Building Block Integration

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This powerpoint goes over building blocks at a high-level and highlights some of the more common integration points.

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  • And here are tangible examples of where they show up at in the GUI
  • Large, stable developer community over 300 members of which contribute to open source educational tool development, most of which is specifically for Blackboard’s platforms. Join us later this week to get a more hands-on feel for what is possible.
  • Building Block Integration

    1. 1. Blackboard Extensibility and Integration<br />
    2. 2. Extensibility and Integration<br />Extend the functionality of the user-facing application<br />Institution-specific needs (administrative or pedagogical)<br />Discipline-specific needs<br />Integrate features of tools developed by third parties (commercial and institutional)<br />Collaboration and Communication<br />Content offerings (publisher tools)<br />Integrate enterprise systems<br />SIS data, inbound<br />Reporting data, outbound<br />
    3. 3. Building Blocks<br />Extension framework using a “drop-in” model – packages of application code can be deployed dynamically<br />Well-defined integration points in the UI<br />Custom Content Types<br />Course-level tools<br />Administration Panel Tools<br />Community System Modules<br />… and more<br />Standard, commodity programming model (Java Web Applications)<br />
    4. 4.
    5. 5.
    6. 6. Web Services<br />Framework and infrastructure for consistent Web Service development<br />Management console<br />Common authentication, logging<br />Standard, shipped Web Services (SOAP/HTTP)<br />Content<br />Calendaring<br />Administrative data (Users, Courses, Enrollment)<br />Gradebook data<br />…more<br />Framework for extending set of supported Web Services<br />
    7. 7. Proxy Tools<br />Extension framework using a “link to and launch” model<br />Preferred framework for “distributed” tools<br />Basis for the IMS LTI specification<br />Integrates/Builds on Web Services<br />Well-defined UI extension points, similar to Building Blocks<br />Technology and framework agnostic – tools can be written in PHP, Ruby/Rails, .NET, etc.<br />Only requirement is support for HTTP, SOAP, and basic cryptography<br />
    8. 8. Standards Initiatives<br />IMS Enterprise<br />Support for XML imports for student, course, enrollment data<br />Web Services implementation in 9.1<br />IMS Common Cartridge<br />Working on 1.1 support (incorporates Basic LTI)<br />Actively engaged in defining 1.1 and 1.2<br />IMS Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI)<br />Contributed technical specs for Proxy Tools as input to the specification process<br />Specification is progressing to final draft<br />Accessibility<br />Section 508<br />
    9. 9. Developer Community<br />First commercial VLE with APIs & plugin framework (2001)<br />Large community of ~2000 developers<br />300+ member Open Source Community for Educational Learning Objects & Tools<br />Almost 70 open source projects that plug into Blackboard VLEs<br />Organizes “Open Source Day” – a community driven supplement to Blackboard DevCon<br />
    10. 10. Developer Community – Examples<br />iTunes U Building Block, Vanderbilt University<br />Self and Peer Assessment Tool, Dundee University<br />Acquired by Blackboard for inclusion in the product<br />Sign Up Tool, Durham University<br />See http://extensions.blackboard.com/ for a more complete list of contributed solutions (community and vendor sourced)<br />

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