I have found that in order to stay organized across all my courses (and daily life), it is necessary to centralize and consolidate important dates, requirements, and assignments. This task is especially time consuming if course updates are not standardized (email vs BB announcements, external websites, etc...) or when an instructor is not fully leveraging blackboard to host the course (private course webpage off of their academic website). I've been successful in centralizing my updated "to do" list by spending time each day carefully checking the different possible sources of information for each course (blackboard, instructor's website, email, lecture announcements, etc...) and pushing updates to a private web and messaging sever...this is not efficient or possible for the less technical student. I think BB is in a unique position to create a solution to centralize and organize across desperate information sources for real-time course management, even when information is not being published to BB directly.
Two ideas that quickly come to mind:
To Do List:
Is there any way that BB can add a persistent and centralized "To Do" list feature that allows users to add items such as assignments, readings, worksheets, etc... To my understanding, the BB calendar is only effective when a task is assigned. I would like the ability to create my own tasks that are centralized and can be eliminated/ "crossed off" even when there is no submission (i.e., reading a large document). And exposing to an API would be helpful too.
Creating the ability for instructors and students to feed tag with a "task", "summary" and a "due date" for automatic ingestion into the "to do list." For instance, an instructor mentions in class, "please read chapter 1 by next class"...a student then sends an email to their account with "Read Ch 1 #InternationalAffairs101 #DueThursday" and then it gets added to the central "to do list." Or in another instance, a professor updates his website with assigned readings for different class dates, having BB ingest the webpage and appropriately add it to the subscribed class calendar?
Just some suggestions...I think BB would be an ideal place to put something useful into prod.
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