Communication and collaboration

See the Succeed in your studies website for advice on successful group work.

Discussion forums

Discussion forums may be used for a variety of purposes on your course, from general introductions to discussions about the academic work on the course.

In general, you should keep messages fairly short and respond positively to messages from other people. It's a good idea to change the title of your message to reflect the content, to make the discussion forum easier to read. Otherwise all the messages will have the same title as the original message in the thread.

For more information, see Blackboard's help page on Discussions.


In some cases your tutors may create groups in Blackboard as a way for you to work together. Depending how they are set up, these groups may include tools such as group discussion forums, blogs and wikis.

If you are a member of a group, you will see this at the bottom of the course menu on the left:

Groups - student view


VoiceThread allows you to share images, documents and videos to which others can add voice or text comments. You can draw on the screen while you are talking to highlight what you are talking about. Your tutors may use VoiceThread for assessments or audio discussions.

See VoiceThread's help pages for more information.

Points to watch out for

VoiceThread may not work correctly when using Internet Explorer, so it is best to use another browser such as Chrome.

When you click a VoiceThread link in Blackboard, you may see a screen with a Launch button for a few seconds. Do not click Launch as this can cause problems, simply wait for the VoiceThread to open..

If you see a VoiceThread Account Verification message, this is usually because you have a VoiceThread account already and the system is trying to connect this to Blackboard. In this case, set the password and login as directed. You should only see this message once.

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