The ability to make evidenced based decisions on Blackboard (Course Resources) performance, engagement and achievement should offer opportunities for us to enhance the student learning journey and empower both staff and students alike.
The Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) team are now supporting academic staff to access various actionable reporting dashboards, which will illuminate areas of the digital student journey previously difficult to reach. In doing so, it is envisaged that academic colleagues will better understand student learning activity to inform appropriate academic advice and guidance, such that students are enabled to reach their goals and maximise their academic potential.

Alongside the implementation of Blackboard Analytics for Learn, the TEL team are also working with colleagues across the institution to implement a wider suite of reporting tools for additional learning technologies. By contributing enhanced learning analytics to institutional business intelligence, Derby is pursuing its ambitions to become a sector lead in personalising the student experience. ​

If you would like to access the Learning Analytics dashboard or would like more information please contact the TEL team via or via ext. 1865


HEFCE Experimental Innovation Catalyst Project

Blackboard TEL Usage Statistics Dashboard

This dashboard is primarily designed for TEL staff to track tool usage at Department, College and Institutional levels. It may give valuable insight into how and when the system is broadly being used by staff and students.​ Information here may be particularly useful if TEL Staff are asked to demonstrate how TEL is being used within a subject area for Periodic Review or Validation purposes.​​

Blackboard Module Activity​

This tab will show how many active modules have been established on the system during an academic year. By active, we mean has any student engagement. Currently this data goes back to Academic Year 2010-11.

  • Staff module management and workload
  • TEL College resource spread

Student Interaction

This tab pulls together reports on how students (and tutors) have been engaging with the Blackboard discussion forums. We can query number of forums, posts and threads in any particular subject area as a possible indication of how effective tutors are at giving students an active voice in their learning. Also included within these measures are the number of mobile accesses through the Blackboard app.

  • Student voice
  • More tutor posts, more student post
  • Mobile friendly content?

Tools and Items

This tab is potentially the most useful at being able to ascertain overall engagement with Blackboard at College, Departmental and Module level. We should be able to identify hot and cold areas of practice by using this tab, as well as possibly identifying champions. Choose a tool and academic year to query, then click on the College to drill down. We can see the number of tools established within a module and the degree to which they have been accessed.

  • Identify champions
  • Identify hot and cold areas of usage

Assessment, Content and Tools

This tab give a broad indication of the types of practice we are seeing with Blackboard usage from 2010 onwards. It may be that the use of Blackboard native tools have slowed down as Blackboard has become more effective at aggregating and synthesizing external tools. Also, we may note that in most cases, Blackboard is becoming more central to the assessment process.

  • Native tool usage
  • Grade centre usage

All Measures over 4 Years

This tab gives us an indication of how certain engagement criteria have either grown or shrunk in usage as compared to the previous term (academic year). This type of information may be useful to Heads of Department when identifying staff development needs, or for the TEL team when looking at resource allocation across Colleges.

  • Growth areas
  • Shrinkage

Month on Month (College and Institution only)

This tab gives us insight into when tools are being accessed across a calendar year. If we view this as a heat map, we should be able to allocate resource to more effectively meet the needs of staff, as their priority naturally changes throughout the course of a year.

  • Staff priority
  • Appropriately timed staff development

Module Investigation Dashboard

This dashboard is primarily to be used by the TEL Team to investigate how Blackboard is being used by individual members of staff at Module level. It may be useful to understand a user’s historical relationship with Blackboard when preparing for a staff development session, or a one-to-one with a member of staff. Information here may be particularly useful if TEL Staff are asked to demonstrate how TEL is being used within a subject area for Periodic Review or Validation purposes.

User Activity

This tab allows us to view any current member of staff or student and investigate their Blackboard activity in terms of minutes, interactions and accesses. We can also see at a glance all of the modules that staff or students are enrolled onto in descending order.

  • Engagement
  • Trend analysis
  • Which modules does the user have active enrolment on?

Module Snapshot (last completed term)

This tab gives us insight into how any given module is being used, in terms of tool and content type. We can see all enrolment activity and query the relationship between grade point and activity. Please note that this data is always from the last completed academic year and therefore isn’t current.

  • Overall student engagement with module tools and content
  • Individual student engagement with module
  • Reflection and planning for next academic year

Module Trend Analysis

This tab gives us access to up to date module trend analysis on student activity, grade points, number of modules and enrolment.

  • Have interventions had any causational impact on student activity or performance?

Module Investigation

This tab gives us insight into how Blackboard within a particular Department is being used. We can also see where there is high usage of the native Blackboard Assignment tool and no usage of the Turnitin plugin. Departmental leads (HoD, DHoD) may find this dashboard useful.

  • Large file sizes may indicate that the student experience is adversely affected by not being mobile friendly
  • Is the eSubmisson process not being used in certain modules, if not, why?
  • Are there areas of good practice in modules with high levels of engagement that we can assist with disseminating across a Department?

High Enrolment Modules

This tab shows high enrolment modules within a particular Department. By targeting these modules for ongoing improvement, we are potentially improving the student experience for a high number of users.

  • Is the group tool being used?
  • Are there any opportunities to talk to staff about the use of peer marking?
  • Are staff aware of adaptive release?

User Investigation

This tab allows us to investigate a particular user in terms of their module access. We can also see the average measures for module access here, this may give us early warning if a student or member of staff is struggling to engage with the system in relation to their peers. We can also identity potential super-users or champions of a particular tool.

  • Can a super-user write a small case study for the Ideas Factory?
  • Can we capture good practice for staff development purposes and the TEL Showcase?

Personal Tutoring Dashboard

This dashboard has the scope to be used with Personal Tutors to give them insight into how their personal tutees are using Blackboard. We would recommend that this resource is always used in conjunction with the Academic Workspace on PeopleSoft.

Current Student Activity

This tab gives up to date metrics on student Blackboard engagement against the module average. To understand further how students are engaging with a particular module, we would recommend that Personal Tutors make use of the Performance Dashboard and Retention Centre within Blackboard itself.

  • Have students been making use of Blackboard by accessing digital course material?
  • Is low Blackboard engagement an indication of below average performance?

Student Performance History

This tab pulls in all student Blackboard engagement data across all enrolled academic year periods. This tab doesn’t contain up to date performance history, grading data is always from last completed term. To understand further how students are engaging with a particular module, we would recommend that Personal Tutors make use of the Performance Dashboard and Retention Centre within Blackboard itself.

  • Has student activity had a positive or negative relationship on grade points?
  • How has the student fared against the module average?

At-Risk Students

This tab shows in descending order the least 25 active students within a particular Department. These students all have active enrolments, as indicted by the interactions metric.

  • Is this data actionable in terms of making an intervention before the retention rate is adversely affected?