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Getting Started with Blackboard Collaborate!

for Students and Faculty

Blackboard Collaborate is the University's web meeting software for online classes and/or student/staff collaboration. Used primarily in teaching e-Learning courses, Blackboard Collaborate bridges the gap between campus, instructor, and student. It can be used to present guests speakers, hold virtual office hours, and bring together colleagues from all over the US and the World.

We highly recommend completing the Blackboard Collaborate Setup PRIOR to your first class.

You will need speakers and microphone or a headset.

STEP 1:  Login to Blackboard

  1. there are two ways to access Blackboard Learn; one is through the UAS Online Portal, the second is through the shortcut ribbon at the top of each UAS webpage.
  2. Click the bookmark to your course.
  3. Once connected to your Blackboard course, look at the menu on the left.
  4. Click WebMeeting  Note which of the two screens you receive. (Note: It is possible that the Webmeeting link in your class may be hidden or been given a different name.  Contact your instructor if you have questions about the sessions planned for your class.)

Old WebMeeting System

webmeeting old

New WebMeeting System

webmeeting new

STEP 2:  Check System Requirements

  • The new WebMeeting version uses a launcher and doesn't need to rely on the computers Java but Tech Check is provided here for support.
  • The older legacy version of webmeeting works using Java 7, therefore needs no update. Users updating Java might actually encounter more problems.
  • Review the results of the “Checking System Requirements” section to verify your computer is compatible.
  • Close the Tech Check page.

STEP 3:  Initial Setup (New Collaborate System)

  • Visit the v12.6 Collaborate Configuration Room (US-SAS)
    • Open the meeting.collab file using the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher
    • If you have never installed the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher app, click Cancel and click the link to download and install the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher application.
    • Important Note: The software installation requires Administrator access on your computer. People connecting from a managed computers like an office, will need to work with their local IT support staff to install the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher. 

STEP 3: Initial Setup (Old Collaborate System) 

  • WebMeeting needs Java 7.x that can be downloaded here.
  • Configure Java Security Settings: Java is fundamental piece of software needed for Blackboard Collaborate. Versions vary based on the operating system of your computer and the version of browser.
Java Web Start: 
  • Java is a multifunction product.  If you are having difficulty opening your webmeeting, make certain it is opening in Java Web Start.  This is located at:
    • PC: C:\Program Files\Java\jre7\bin\javaws.exe OR C:\Program Files(x86)\Java\jre7\bin\javaws.exe 
    • Mac: /System/Library/CoreServices/
  • Java Security Settings: Set the security settings to enable webmeetings before your first meeting. To update Java security settings, go to:
    • Windows Users: go to Start > Control Panel > Java > Java Control Panel, click Security tab > add AND https://* AND to the Exception Site List. 
    • MAC Users: go to the Apple icon > System Preferences > Java icon > Java Control Panel, click Security tab > add AND https://* AND to the Exception Site List.
    • MAC Users: when users receive this message "this application is from an unidentified developer", go to the Apple icon > System Preferences > Security and Privacy > General tab. Click on the lock icon in the lower left corner and enter in your administrator credentials for that computer. Then, where it says "Allow apps downloaded from..." select "Anywhere".
      • (If you update your operating system or Java during the semester, many times the exceptions list will be erased. Just repeat the set-up process. ) PDF MAC instructions here!
  • Configure WebMeeting - Audio Setup:  Complete the steps shown in the Audio Setup video.

STEP 4:  Revisit your UAS Blackboard class: Revisit your UAS Blackboard course site and confirm that you can join the WebMeeting.

Additional Resources

Contact the Helpdesk at 877-465-6400 or 796-6400 (in Juneau) 


  • Your class webmeeting session is available to you 24/7
  • You can use it to connect with classmates, any time your instructor does not have it scheduled 

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If you have problems contact the Helpdesk for support toll free at 877-465-6400 or 796-6400 (in Juneau).


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