skip to main content
Close Icon We use cookies to improve your website experience.  To learn about our use of cookies and how you can manage your cookie settings, please see our Cookie Policy.  By continuing to use the website, you consent to our use of cookies.
Global Search Configuration

Ovum view

Summary

Ovum recently attended BbWorld 2015, Blackboard's education technology conference, in Washington D.C. The event built on Blackboard's 2014 theme of "reimagining education" through its New Learning Experience (NLE) offering. The NLE is Blackboard's approach to encouraging better engagement, interaction, and quality learning between students and education providers. In recent years, Blackboard has placed much greater emphasis on the learner, and in particular, on nontraditional learners and their expectations and preferences. The NLE supports this focus by providing students with a collaborative, integrated, and flexible learning environment. This gives Blackboard a clear competitive advantage, but the market is highly competitive and it is likely that other vendors will respond by bringing greater choice to institutions.

Consider Blackboard a citizen of the higher education industry

Throughout the conference, Blackboard spoke about nontraditional learners and reiterated the importance of placing the learner at the center of the process. To that end, it has enhanced its approach to solutions, support, and services with the NLE, which includes a new user experience entitled Ultra. This allows institutions to bring together different types of students, and integrates the following:

  • Blackboard Learn (Ultra)

  • Blackboard Collaborate (Ultra)

  • Bb Student (new mobile app)

  • Blackboard Transact

  • MyEdu

  • Blackboard Student Pathway Services

The NLE is focused on the wants and needs of the learner. It also includes enrollment services, student services and technology support, enterprise consulting services, and data and analytics capabilities. The Ultra user experience is currently only available for software-as-a-service (SaaS), with no current plans to offer an on-premise version. Ultra is much more than a usability makeover; the new architecture has the ability to capture an array of real-time learning analytics data, hence the difficulties in installing locally.

In the past, higher education has been primarily concerned with metrics rather than creativity. However, as student learning preferences have changed, Blackboard has aimed to create flexible products that minimize anxiety in learners and support their needs. Blackboard usability experts examined how students learn to inform the development of an empathetic design to support their preferred choice of learning. Although higher education cannot be reimagined overnight, Blackboard is continually providing tangible evidence of its commitment to closing the gap between what today's students want, and what the higher education system is providing. It is evident that Blackboard is not just a technology provider, but a citizen of the higher education industry.

Appendix

Further reading

Innovation Case Study: Executing a Student Experience Strategy at NUI Galway,IT0008-000231 (April 2015)

Student Mobile Consumption: Enabling the Freedom to Choose a Learning Path,IT0008-000230 (April 2015)

"Blackboard rethinks education at BbWorld 2014,"IT0008-000208 (July 2014)

Author

Navneet Johal, Research Analyst, Education Technology

navneet.johal@ovum.com

Recommended Articles

  • Service Provider Markets, Consumer & Entertainment Services,...

    MWC 2018 Highlights

    By Ronan De Renesse 27 Feb 2018

    Over 20 of our senior Ovum analysts and consultants attended this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona at the end of February. In between meetings, briefings and presentations, our analyst team were blogging and tweeting about key developments, trends and rumors. Have a look through our daily MWC 2018 Highlights to find out what happened.

    Topics 5G AI IoT Cloud Payments SDN/NFV Smart home

  • Internet of Things

    IoT Viewpoints 2018

    IoT Viewpoints explore the IoT opportunity in 2018 and beyond. Download our latest e-book to get our newest collection of thought leadership articles on the emerging IoT trends, technologies and opportunities.

    Topics IoT

  • Consumer & Entertainment Services

    US pay TV: Is it facing an existential threat?

    By Adam Thomas 28 Mar 2018

    With US pay TV having endured the worst year in its history, thoughts have inevitably turned to the future. The likelihood remains that the immediate future will remain highly uncomfortable for everyone except the scaled multinational digital platforms.

;

Have any questions? Speak to a Specialist

Europe, Middle East & Africa team - +44 (0) 207 017 7700


Asia-Pacific team - +61 (0)3 960 16700

US team - +1 646 957 8878

+44 (0) 207 551 9047 - Operational from 09.00 - 17.00 UK time

You can also contact your named/allocated Client Services Executive using their direct dial.
PR enquiries - Call us at +44 788 597 5160 or email us at pr@ovum.com

Contact marketing - 
marketingdepartment@ovum.com

Already an Ovum client? Login to the Knowledge Center now