There are two common problems that affect the smooth running of online seminars in Collaborate: wrong connection speed and audio issues. We have created a Welcome Slide that you can use or adapt for your Collaborate sessions. The slide also points to our Participant Guide [PDF] and Common Problems [Google Doc].
To help your participants prepare for the session as soon as they join a Collaborate room, you can pre-load content. Note: Participants will only see the pre-loaded content if a moderator is in the room. Else, they will see an empty whiteboard. Pre-loading content is a quick way of getting the same content at the start of every time you use your Collaborate room. You can still upload the rest of your slides for that session when you begin.
In order to pre-load content into a Collaborate session or room, you will need to create a Plan file. To do this, download the free Plan program from Blackboard, then add PowerPoint files and other resources to your Plan file. A full guide for Plan [PDF] is provided by Blackboard. Plan can also be used to package up a complete Collaborate session plan, including the session slides, files for participants to download, polls and calls for interactions.
We have created a simple Plan file you can use as a Welcome message based on the PowerPoint slide below. Simply add this to your room/session as the pre-loaded content.
Note: PowerPoint files cannot be uploaded as pre-load content, they must be converted to Plan files. You can, however, upload PowerPoint files during the session.
How to pre-load content in Collaborate
- Create your Plan file/download the Welcome Slide Plan file above.
- Go to the Blackboard Collaborate page within your VLE site: Control Panel > Course Tools > Blackboard Collaborate.
- Click the Edit link for your room/session.
- Within Room Attributes, go to the Preload Content setting and attach the Plan file.
- Click Save at the bottom of the page.