Blackboard Communities of Practice Forum Live Online
WASHINGTON, Nov. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB) today announces the launch of its new Communities of Practice Initiative(SM) to encourage increased interaction among the ever-growing community of Blackboard users. The initiative centers around a new online forum located at http://communities.blackboard.com. Members of the Blackboard community can access this central meeting ground anytime and from any location in order to share e-learning strategies and practices.
The new site features two new e-learning initiatives, the Blackboard Bbionic Course Contest(SM) and the Blackboard Greenhouse Project(SM), to foster collaboration among Blackboard users and to encourage them to get involved in this new community.
The Blackboard Bbionic Course Contest challenges teams from Blackboard institutions to submit technologically rich, pedagogically sound online courses to win one of five $5,000 awards. The Blackboard Greenhouse Project is a granting program open to faculty, staff and administrators of Blackboard higher education institutions around the globe. Two $25,000 grants will be awarded for programs that support the Blackboard community’s discussions on e- learning and provide solutions for greater adoption.
Complete rules, guidelines and entry forms for both contests can be accessed through http://communities.blackboard.com. Submissions for the Blackboard Bbionic Course Contest are due by January 25, 2005 and for the Blackboard Greenhouse Project by January 7, 2005. Winners for both will be announced at the Blackboard Users Conference, in Baltimore, April 12 through 14, 2005.
“Through Blackboard’s new Communities of Practice initiative, we hope to build on our tradition of providing and rewarding thought leadership in e- learning,” said Adrian Alleyne, Manager of Blackboard’s Communities. “Faculty and administrators who use Blackboard have taken some important first steps to reach out and share knowledge and best practices through online discussion forums and email list serves. This new initiative aims to strengthen these relationships and leverage the power of the existing network of users.”
Several regional user groups have already signed on to Blackboard’s new communities of practice site, including the Rocky Mountain Blackboard Users Group (Rocky BUG). Jane Maurer is a member of Rocky BUG and regularly participates in discussions with other members.
“We started the Rocky BUG about a year and a half ago; our initial goal was to create a regional support group of users in the Rocky Mountain region, from Colorado, Wyoming, and the surrounding vicinity,” said Jane Maurer, Electronic Course Management System Coordinator of Colorado Mountain College. “We are really excited about the new communities of practice space. We already have a listserv, but this site provides an expanded environment in which we may have discussions, share training and support ideas, post announcements of our monthly meetings and more.”
About Blackboard Inc.
Blackboard is a leading provider of enterprise software and services to the education industry. The Company’s product line consists of five software applications bundled in two suites, the Blackboard Academic Suite (TM) and the Blackboard Commerce Suite (TM). Blackboard’s clients include colleges, universities, schools and other education providers, as well as textbook publishers and student-focused merchants that serve education providers and their students. Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices and staff in North America, Europe and Asia.
Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Blackboard and other statements containing the words “believes,” “anticipates,” “plans,” “expects,” “will,” and similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including the factors discussed in the “Risk Factors” section of our most recent 10-Q filed with the SEC. In addition, the forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Company’s views as of November 16, 2004. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause the Company’s views to change. However, while the Company may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the Company’s views as of any date subsequent to November 16, 2004.