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Bb Tip #67: Course Structures and Course Themes

Two new features included in the Blackboard Learn 9.1 SP9 upgrade are course structures and course themes. (See Bb tip #55 for more information on the upgrade.)

Course structures are predefined structures that correspond to teaching styles. There are five categories of course structures you can use as a launching pad to create content and to organize your course. Each course structure contains materials such as Course Menu links, instructions, and content examples you can add to your course to begin the design process quickly.

Course themes add a background image to the course display and change the color of the menu, buttons, controls, etc.

Setting up your course for the start of the semester is good time to try course structures and/or course themes.

Important: Adding a course structure does not replace existing Course Menu items or content. When using a course structure, its content is added to the existing content and Course Menu in your course. After applying the new course structure you will have to delete content and Course Menu items you do not want.

Themes do not affect course content or a chosen course structure. You can change the theme at any time. Unlike course structures, changing to a new course theme will not affect your course content or structure.


Follow these steps to do it.

To apply one of the predefined course structures to your course:

  1. Goto the [Control Panel] for the course and click on the [Customization] link to expand it. Click on [Teaching Style].
  2. Scroll through the course structures in the list on the left of section 1 and click one that you are interested in. A description will appear in the middle box and an example of the Course Menu for the selected course structure will be displayed to the right of the description. Each time you click on a course structure you will get a description and an example of the corresponding Course Menu.
  3. To select a course structure to apply to your course, select it from the list on the left and then click the [Use This Structure] button which is located under the course structure’s description.
  4. Optionally, you can check the box to include content examples for the selected course structure. If you choose this option sample content and instructions will be copied to your course.
  5. Click [Submit] to apply the selected course structure.


To apply a course theme to your course:

  1. Goto the [Control Panel] for the course and click on the [Customization] link to expand it. Click on [Teaching Style].
  2. Scroll through the course themes in section 3 and click on the one you want to use.
  3. Click [Submit] to apply the selected course theme.

Note: You can change the course theme without going through the control panel by 1) clicking on the color wheel icon which appears to the left of edit mode when edit mode is on, 2) scroll through the list of available themes, and 3) click on a new theme.

Want more information?
Selecting a course structure [HTML].
Setting Course Style Options [HTML].
Explore Blackboard's On Demand Learning Center [HTML].
Blackboard How-To documents [HTML]
Visit the Blackboard FAQs for additional blackboard information
or email or call Janice Florent: (504) 520-7418

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