Currently, the time zone used in Blackboard Learn is the time zone set by the institution. This causes confusion for an online user base that is scattered all over the world. My idea is that a user should be able to set their time zone in Bb Learn and have all of the times related to their course content shown their time zone in Due Dates, To Do modules, Streams, Item dates, and Calendars.
Our campus is located in US Central Time.
We have a campus in Madrid, Spain that is 7 hours ahead of us (except for 2 weeks a year when they are 6 hours ahead because our changes to/from Daylight Savings Time do not occur on the same day).
When an instructor in Madrid posts an assignment and wants it to:
A) be available on a Tuesday at 6am Madrid time, it must be set to Monday at 11pm except in those 2 weeks a year when it is set to Monday at 11:59pm (midnight).
B) set a due date of Saturday at 11:59pm in Madrid, it must be set to Saturday at 5pm again except those 2 weeks when it's set to 6pm.
A student in Madrid will see the assignment open at 6am, no problem, but will see the due date as 5pm (or 6pm in those 2 weeks) on Saturday and have to remember that it is really due at midnight.
A student in the same course that is located in Los Angeles, will see the assignment open Monday at 9pm. That's probably ok since all the students see the assignment open at the same time...but...
that LA student sees a due date of 5pm Saturday. That student must know that the due date/time is in US Central Time and then calculate that it really means that they need turn the assignment in by 3pm Saturday to meet the Madrid midnight due date.
Example of future:
The Madrid instructor sets a time zone in Personal Settings.
The LA student sets a time zone in Personal Settings.
The instructor creates an assignment to be available at Tues 6am without making any adjustments for the main campus time zone.
The instructor sets the assignment with a Due Date of Saturday 11:59pm without making any adjustments for the main campus time zone.
A student in Madrid sees the Due Date as Saturday 11:59pm.
A student in US Central time zone sees a Due Date of Saturday at 5pm (or 6pm depending again on the date).
A student in California sees a Due Date of Saturday at 3pm (or 4pm depending).
The student and instructor calendars all show the correct due date for their time zone.
Everyone gets their work turned in on time. The instructor wakes up on Sunday and sees all of the assignments turned in without having any emails from the CA student about being late because of time zones.
Everyone is happy. Everyone gets an A. Everyone is focused on doing the work for the class instead of doing the math for the time zones.
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