In August we offered an online event called 21 Days of Blackboard Data, in which members of the Blackboard community with SQL expertise could learn how to use the Developer Tier of the Blackboard Reporting Stack to answer common educational questions. We gathered a lot of feedback during and after this event, and have been making some changes in preparation for re-releasing this as a self-paced course.
Previously, the course ran over 21 working days, with a new challenge released each day. We still recommend this as the best approach as it helps to build a habit, but we're aware that this isn't always possible. For this reason we've made the course self-paced - when you achieve at least 50% in a challenge the next becomes available to you - so you can choose to complete the course over a few days or spread it over a few weeks - it's entirely up to you. Each cohort will have access to the course and demo environment for 60 days, which we feel is plenty of time to complete the course and to dip back in when you want to retrieve something.
We've also improved some of the challenges, assessments and queries used, and included a solution script in addition to the solution walkthrough videos, so you can get help in your preferred format. These solution resources appear after your first attempt at the assessment.
One thing we've removed is the competition element - in this version you'll be competing against yourself. We would like to give some form of acknowledgement for those completing the course though, so we'll see if there's something we can add in the new Community site relating to this.
We think every institution will benefit from having one or more (there's no limit) member of staff participating on the course, regardless of whether you are currently eligible for Blackboard Data. But don't just listen to me - here's what our previous participants have to say:
Having completed the 21 Days of Blackboard experience, I am confident that our eventual migration to SaaS will greatly enhance our current reporting capabilities.
Josh Carroll, Atlantic Cape Community College
21 Days was excellent way to explore the offerings of Blackboard Data. Combining guided walkthroughs of the data structures with hands-on activities using real data helped illustrate some of the ways we we will be able to use our own environment in order to address some of our institutional data needs. I look forward to using Blackboard Data at our institution and integrating it into our analytics toolkit.
Jeffrey Berman, Drexel University
We're nearly finished with these changes, and we're taking registrations for the course over at http://go.blackboard.com/21days. If you register before December 9th, you'll be included in the first cohort and receive access on or before December 13th. We'll then enrol a new cohort monthly. Note that if you've already registered your interest prior to November 27th, you'll need to re-register as we need a little more detail. And of course, if you already participated in a previous cohort you are more than welcome to re-register (note however that your previous progress and grades won't be there as it's a separate course).
Looking forward to taking another giant leap into Blackboard Data