Blackboard Accessibility Interest Group

Campus Information Technologies and Educational Services (CITES) and Disability Resources and Educational Services (DRES)

University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign


In order to utilize every member's time, effort, knowledge, and expertise, we decided to organize our collaboration level with Blackboard into the following 4 sub-groups. Members have been asked to join one or more sub-groups and many members have already joint these groups.
The Blackboard Accessibility Interest Group will have monthly general meeting/teleconference on 1st Monday of each month.
Each sub-group meets as many times as needed while working on a particular project. The date/time and location of sub-group specific teleconference are set by members of each sub-group. Information for general and sub-group specific teleconferences will be posted at the collaboration home page.

In order to provide an environment for members of this group to share their thoughts and feedback, we have setup a Wiki space for this purpose. You can contribute and add your feedback at Blackboard Accessibility WIKI Area

If you are a member of the Blackboard Accessibility Interest Group and would like to join one of these sub-groups or if you have any question about any of these sub-groups, please send an e-mail to Hadi Rangin at

Design sub-groups

The Design sub-group acts and works with Blackboard as an advisory group at very early stage to discuss the new features and techniques that Blackboard is considering to incorporate in new products or new versions of existing products that haven't been released yet.
The goal is to help Blackboard to evolve to apply Universal Design. This way will we can make sure that the accessibility of the intended technologies to be used is going to be accessible. This subgroup will be testing new products or upcoming releases for accessibility features to make sure that accessibility features are incorproated in them.
Members of this subgroup are required to sign an NDA agreement with blackboard. If you are interested in joining this subgroup, please drop a note to the leader of this subgroup (see below) or to hadi Rangin at

Members of Design sub-group

Testing sub-group

The Testing sub-group will be testing and evaluating the accessibility of the existing products. All already recorded accessibility issues at our collaboration site and any new accessibility issues will be reported and recorded via the leader of this group in the Behind the Blackboard, the Blackboard bug reporting system. The leader will follow up with blackboard regarding the reported issues and the leader will report to the list about their progresses.
The recorded issues at the Behind the Blackboard is mirrored with the Collaboration Issue List to reflect up-to-date information about the already identified issues.

The leader and the members of the bb-testing subgroup use the bb-testing/Wiki environment to collect the necessary data and discussion on issues that are currently being identified.

Members of Testing sub-group

Documentation sub-group

The Documentation sub-group will work with the Technical Communication team at Blackboard to improve the contents and layout of accessibility related materials. Providing Inline instruction incorporated in the application is another factor in improving the usability/accessibility of the product. The documentation sub-group will also work with the Technical support Team and educate them about the basics of Assistive Technology hardware/software and the potential accessibility problems related to each disability group. The goal is to incorporate information about accessibility in the support documentations, a typical technical support understand the basics about the accessibility and can route the accessibility related problem to the right people in Blackboard if he/she can not resolve it by himself/herself.

bb-doc wiki area

Members of Documentations sub-group

QA sub-group

Note: This group has been eliminated and doesn't exist anymore.

The QA sub-group will be working with the QA department to help and educate them how to test for accessibility and define testing procedures that can be integrated in the standard QA processes.

Members of QA sub-groups