Preparing Blackboard Courses for Migration to Brightspace

In order to ensure a smooth transition from Blackboard to Brightspace, the first step is to prepare your courses for migration. 

On this page:

Introduction to the premigration process

Overview of the migration process

The resources on this page have been designed to help instructors prepare for the upcoming Learning Management System (LMS) migration from Blackboard to Brightspace. Taking the actions outlined here and in the downloadable, pre-migration checklist will support a smooth migration from Blackboard to Brightspace when courses are automatically batch migrated in early 2023. 

Batch migration will occur in three phases: 

  • Phase 1: Courses from the spring 2022 through winter 2023 semesters will be migrated to Brightspace in February 2023.
  • Phase 2: Courses from the spring 2023 semester will be migrated to Brightspace in June 2023.
  • Phase 3: Courses from the summer 2023 semester will be migrated to Brightspace in September 2023.

You will be notified by email as your courses are migrated to Brightspace. Please refer to the Learning Management System Transition web page for further information and details about the transition process.

When should you finish reviewing and preparing your courses for migration?
  • Spring 2022, Summer 2022 and Fall 2022 courses – Dec. 30, 2022.
  • Winter 2023 courses – Jan. 28, 2023.
What content will be migrated to Brightspace?

Only the course content and the course structure will be migrated. Student rosters, activity data and submissions will not be migrated. 

Pre-migration workshop video

The Office of Curriculum, Assessment and Teaching Transformation is dedicated to supporting you in preparing your current Blackboard courses to migrate over to Brightspace. Click here to watch a recording of our pre-migration workshop to learn more about the transition timeline and how to prepare your course for the move from Blackboard to Brightspace.

Review and prepare your courses for migration

Prior to your course migrating to Brightspace, it is important to review and revise your course. The pre-migration checklist, as well as the pedagogical strategies below, will help you with the review and revision process. Please see the steps below.

Prepare your courses for migration

Review your courses for pedagogical best practices

Additional considerations: The OSCQR Rubric

Follow the OSCQR Rubric to review and improve course quality and accessibility for Brightspace.

Cleaning up your course content

Prior to migration, it is important to remove the clutter in your Blackboard courses, including identifying and removing unused files and materials, as well as unused tests, quizzes, pools and surveys. This will help improve the efficiency of your courses, reduce the storage size and prepare your course for the eventual migration to a new LMS. For more detailed information, please refer to the document, "How to clean up your course content."

Identifying and removing content

The Files area acts as a repository for all files that you have uploaded to Blackboard. Keep in mind that when you add and update files in your course each semester (e.g., your course schedule or syllabus) Blackboard retains the previous version of your file in the Files area. This adds to the overall file size of the course.

Folders in the Files

In addition to the listing of files, you may also notice several folders within your Course Content. Many of these folders contain unused content from previous semesters. You should open each of these folders (and subfolders) and remove the unused files from them following the same steps as above.

Note: You should never remove an entire folder from the Course Content area before verifying that there are no files within it that are linked in the course.

Deleting unused Quizzes, Tests, and Pools

Prior to migration, check the Tests, Surveys, and Pools areas in Blackboard. When courses are copied from semester to semester, unnecessary files are copied over as well. This can present many challenges in the Grade Center. 

Moving video and recorded content from Blackboard to Panopto

Video recordings tend to take up considerable storage in the courses, causing excessive “bloat”. Any previous versions continue to be copied and saved in the Files area of your course. It is recommended to move these files to Panopto (our recommendation), YouTube or some other service which videos can be linked. Once moved to one of these platforms you can link your video to your course.

Prepare course for Archive and Export

This step-by-step guide shows you how to create an archive file and how to create an export file.

Using the UB Learns Class Setup Tool

As you prepare for the migration to the Brightspace learning management system, you will select a single course site for each course that you teach, which you will prepare for migration. Since most recent course sites have been most recently updated, it is likely that you will want to select the newest version of your course sites for migration. Other course sites that will not be migrated should be archived and then deleted using the UB Learns Class Setup Tool. The following guide will help you navigate the Class Setup Tool and prepare your course for migration, archival or deletion.

Next steps

Be sure to save all files and documentation you create in organized folders on your computer or a cloud storage service (e.g., UBbox) to make it easier to find the information you may need after your courses have been migrated to Brightspace. As a reminder, only course content and course structure will be migrated. The student roster, activity data and submissions will not be migrated.

Premigration resources

These resources will help your transition from Blackboard to Brightspace go as smoothly as possible.