Recording your Blackboard Collaborate Session

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Blackboard Collaborate has a 250 attendee limit. If you wish to use Blackboard Collaborate with more than 250 attendees view our guide.

In this guide

Important note about recordings and breakout rooms

No Breakout Group content should get recorded, if you’re recording a session it will automatically end when you start the Breakout groups (unless a moderator stays outside the groups in the main room) and you’ll have to start a new recording once the groups are finished if you wish to record that post-group content.

If, whilst Breakout Groups are underway, a moderator returns to the main room and starts a recording, the content of Breakout Groups will not get recorded, nor will the audio/video shared, but text chat will – this is a bug, and that text chat shouldn’t be captured.

Recording Sessions

Moderators have the ability to record their sessions in a standard format accessible by a wide array of devices for their learners to review on demand. Recorded sessions are saved as MP4 format.

If you record a session your students will be able to view it and will be able to download a copy of the text chat.  Recordings become available on average between 20 minutes and one hour after the session recording is stopped.  In busy times this may take longer.

If you enabled “Allow recording downloads” in the session menu, both you and students will have the ability to download the recording video file.

Important

  • Due to limited space to host Collaborate recordings, we recommend that, where appropriate, you as instructors download recording from Collaborate and then upload them to the Recorded Session section of Blackboard courses via Panopto.  Having done so, delete the Recording from Collaborate.  See the recording options menu in step 4 below for the location of the delete link.
  • You may only download a recording if you have enabled Recording Downloads in the session settings.
    • You may change this setting later if you did not set it when you created the setting, but may have to edit dates or make it open-ended to be able to make the change, since the validation rules will enforce the other settings “making sense” e.g. the session cannot already have ended.
  • It is not possible to allow staff to be able to download the session but not students.
    • So if you download the recording, then delete the recording from Collaborate, and upload to Panopto this gets around this constriction somewhat, although any digital information that can be seen by a user can be downloaded with some tool or other.

Making Recordings

To start recording your session, select Start Recording, located in the Session Menu. The button will then toggle to read Stop Recording to visually indicate the recording is in progress and to allow you to stop it at any time.

Start Recording

Notification Dialog

Stop Recording

Recording In Progress

Blackboard Collaborate notifies session attendees that the session is being recorded in two ways: 1) visual notifications are enabled by default and a notification dialog displays indicating that recording has started and/or stopped, and 2) Collaborate indicates recording is in progress by placing a recording notification icon next to the Session Menu.

It is good practice to remind attendees that the session is being recorded throughout the session.  Late arrivals may not notice the recording indicator.

Likewise, Blackboard Collaborate notifies session attendees that the recording has been stopped by displaying a notification dialog, as well as by removing the recording notification icon from display on the Session menu drop-down.

Once the recording is available it can be shared with those who missed the session, or those who attended but would like to review the session. You can also use the recording feature as a lecture capture to create asynchronous learning opportunities.

Keep the following in mind regarding recordings:

  • Each time a moderator stops a recording during a session, a separate sequentially named recording is created and an email is sent to the moderator.
  • Session recordings include the displayed content during the session, active speaker video, the room audio, public chat, and captions entered during the live session or added later by a moderator.
  • Everyone who has access to the recording can view it from any device as often as they want. There are no view limits.
  • Moderators have the option to customise the name of the recording to make it easy to identify. To rename a recording, locate Recordings in the Collaborate hamburger menu find the recording you want to edit and access the recording options to select Edit name. The recording name always begins with the session name which is a portion of the recording name that cannot be changed.

Where to find your recordings

Recordings become available on average between 20 minutes and one hour after the session recording is stopped.  In busy times this may take longer.

1. Access the Bb Collaborate menu in your course.

2. Select the Hamburger icon (three horizontal lines).

3. Select Recordings from the side menu.

4. Any recordings will be shown.  Select the ellipsis icon (three horizontal dots) for options such as playback and download (if enabled).

Don’t see a download link?

If you did not enable session recordings to be downloaded you will not see a download link.

If you wish to download the recording despite saying elsewhere that you did not want the recording to be downloaded, you can change the setting by:

1. Enter the session menu and click on the … (ellipsis) icon to the right of it. If the session was in the past you may need to filter by previous sessions before you can see it.

2) Choose to edit the settings.

3) Expand session setting and enable recording downloads.

3. Save the session settings.  If the session already ended you will likely have to extend the end date of the session or make it open-ended because validation rules prevent changes being made to a session that attendees can no longer access.

4. You should then be able to see the download link when accessing the session as described above.

 

It’s too much hassle, is there another way?

There is an undocumented and unsupported method illustrated in the video below. This method may stop working without notice.

Downloading chat messages

1. Access the Bb Collaborate menu in your course.

2. Select the Hamburger icon (three horizontal lines).

3. Select Recordings from the side menu.

4. Any recordings will be shown.  Select the ellipsis icon (three horizontal dots) select Watch Now.

5. Open the session menu (on the top left) to download a chat transcript, which depending on the options you set when creating the session may have been anonymised.

Uploading a recording to Panopto

Once you have the video file on your computer, you may upload it to your course’s Panopto area by following this guide.

 

Deleting a recording

Follow these steps to delete a session recording.

1. Access the Bb Collaborate menu in your course.

2. Select the Hamburger icon (three horizontal lines).

3. Select Recordings from the side menu.

4. Any recordings will be shown.  Select the ellipsis icon (three horizontal dots) for options such as playback and download (if enabled).

5. Only when you are 100% certain you wish to do so (there is no undo and no recovery of accidentally deleted recordings), choose to delete the recording.