details, details

Posted by Debby on 30th October and posted in Teaching and Learning

I am teaching an online graduate class for a university in Seattle. The college uses Blackboard, and I did my best to be a good adjunct and adapt my class to the restrictive environment that BB (or BlandBoard, as a colleague referred to it) involves. Alas, I found that no matter how hard I tried, BB just didn’t have the tools to set up a good, constructivist learning environment, and I’d just be banging my head against the wall all quarter trying to get it to fit my vision for what a good online class should entail. I did however, play around with some of the settings in BB before I abandon ship (with the blessing of my program director) and even altered the standard buttons from a solid blue to a striped blue. Nothing fancy, but just something to add a little bit of personality while keeping within the blue color scheme of the school.

I mean really, how can they expect me to work with a program that isn’t even sure if I should trust it?

For the last three weeks I’ve been teaching the class in Moodle, shadowed by the program director, who has been thrilled with what I am doing (see previous entry). She’s been showing the class to a select few, including the Dean, and has been getting good reviews from him as well as the students. Last night, she introduced me to a new adjunct and asked if he could get into the class as a guest so he could get an idea of how to teach an online class. I went ahead and set him up with a sandbox course to play with. Sounds good… yes?

Tonight I get an email from the Co-Program Coordinator, Online Programs, that said:

Hi Debby,


I noticed that your button colors have been changed. If you refer back to the Course Shell Preparation Checklist it states that you should not do the following:

  • Do not add or remove ANY other buttons.
  • Do not change the color or style of ANY buttons.
  • Do not change the order of the buttons.

I will return your buttons to there original state as we are trying to maintain a constant look and feel for all our students here at CU.


Thanks for understanding.


um… lol… ok. glad they are policing the color of the buttons and not paying any attention to the ineffectiveness and inefficiency of a certain specific CMS. I guess as long as my button colors are appropriate, they won’t notice there isn’t actually any CONTENT in their CMS… ROFL!!!

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