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Getting Started Information

Blackboard Online Orientation for First Time Distance Learning Students:

All students must complete the Blackboard Student Online Orientation prior to enrolling in their first online, hybrid, or Blackboard-enabled course.  Students will be introduced to  Blackboard components, learn how to submit assignments, take quizzes and exams, view grades, use the discussion board, send emails, and learn other elements that may assist them in completing their online course successfully.

Click here to register for the Blackboard Student Online Orientation.

Follow the instructions below to access your online/blended course in Blackboard.

NetID Instructions

A NetID is required to access Blackboard and other university computer labs.  (Please choose a NetID that you will remember and that will not be easily hacked.) You cannot proceed until this step has been completed.

Step 1.  From the JSU Home Page login to JSU P.A.W.S.

Step 2.   After you login, from the Main Menu choose Activate NetID, Change NetID Password.

Step 3. Create and confirm a new password that is at least seven (7) characters long and similar to the one of the following examples:

  • Tiger09
  • tiger@09
  • t1ger09
  • tiger09!

**Note:  Your password must include a combination of letters and numbers. It must include at least one capital letter or symbol (for example, &, * @, #).

Step 4. Accessing the Blackboard Learning Management System

To login to Blackboard, go to www.jsums.edu/ and click on Blackboard at the top of the window.

bb login










Or, click on the Blackboard link above and then click Blackboard Login.










Step 5. Enter your Username which is your J-Number (capitalize the J) and Password (enter your NetID) that you setup in Step 1 above.


bblogin screen







Step 6. Press Login.

Please note that you will see ALL enrolled courses in your account (online and traditional).

If you need further assistance with Blackboard ONLY contact JSU Blackboard Help Desk at either (601) 979- 0245.

Blackboard Technical Requirements

Here is a list of operating systems and browsers that will work with Blackboard Learn, however, we strongly recommend using Firefox browser, especially for taking tests.

Supported Browsers

Blackboard supports four primary browsers for Learn releases. Links to the vendor sites for the browsers are included in this topic.

To learn more about Blackboard's general browser support policy as well as information about Javascript, Cookies, and other software, see the Browser Support Policy topic in this section.

The browser versions listed are those that were available when Blackboard Learn 9.1 Service Pack 14 was released in October 2013. These are not the only browsers supported on this release. To learn more, see the Browser Support Policy topic in this section.

Traditionally Released Browsers

The dates listed are the original release dates for general availability.

Logo for Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Internet Explorer® 10 from Microsoft (26 October 2012 for Windows 8,  26 February 2013 for Windows 7)
  • Internet Explorer 9 from Microsoft  (14 March 2011)
  • Some configuration options for Internet Explorer might make some features of Blackboard Learn difficult to use. To learn more,  see the Internet Explorer Security Zones and Compatibility View topic in this section.

Logo for Apple Safari

Automatically Updated Channel-based Browsers

The dates listed are the latest numbered patch release dates.

Logo for Mozilla Firefox browser
  • Firefox® 24 (stable channel) from Mozilla (17 September 2013)
  • Firefox 24 (ESR channel) from Mozilla (17 September 2013)
Logo for Google Chrome
  • Chrome™ 30 (stable channel) from Google (3 October 2013)

Don't See Your Browser or Version Listed?

Both newer and older browsers from these vendors may be supported. To learn more, see the Browser Support Policy topic in this section.

Java and Other Browser Plugins

A handful of features in Blackboard Learn require particular additional software to be installed. Without these, the features themselves do not function. For this service pack of Learn, the following features have plugin requirements:

  • Multiple file uploads in Course Files and Content Collection requires the Java Runtime Environment  (JRE) from Oracle enabled as a browser plugin. The single file upload tool does not have this requirement. The upload applet is signed by Blackboard and includes a timestamping authority that allows the applet to run even after the certificate has expired. 
  • The Virtual Classroom Tools in courses require the JRE from Oracle enabled as a browser plugin. The Virtual Classroom applet is signed by Blackboard and includes a timestamping authority that allows the applet to run even after the certificate has expired. 
  • The Meeting Room and Blackboard Collaborate synchronous communication features, available via Building Block, require the JRE for access to the rooms, but do not require the browser plugin. Blackboard also has additional information about how Blackboard Collaborate uses Java in the Blackboard Collaborate Support Portal.
  • The Record from Webcam feature of the Content Editor requires the Flash Player browser plugin from Adobe to successfully save the recordings to YouTube.

JRE version 7 is the recommended version for features that depend on it. JRE version 6 may work, but could result in unexpected behavior. Oracle has acknowledged some security issues with JRE version 6.

On Apple Mac OS X, Google's Chrome browser does not support Java 7 because of incompatibilities between 64-bit Java and 32-bit Chrome. Firefox and Safari browsers do not have this limitation on Mac OS X. Users of the Chrome browser on Mac OS X must configure Java 6 support in order to access the features listed above.

Adobe Flash Player version 11 is the recommended version of the Adobe Flash Player plugin, but the YouTube service ultimately determines the version required for this plugin. 

Blackboard Learn does not require any other browser plugins. To learn more about browser plugins, assistive technology, and other supporting software, see the Browser Support Policy topic in this section.


Download Mozilla Firefox Software (free download)

For this course, you should install and use Firefox as your web browser. Firefox is a free program that is very similar to Internet Explorer. It can be downloaded from the Mozilla home page. In the experience of the support people at Jackson State University, students using Firefox will experience fewer technology issues when using Blackboard than those who use Internet Explorer. Mac users should use Safari rather than Firefox. Safari is also a free download and can be acquired at Apple.com.

If you are having difficulty with getting your computer set up correctly, you can call the IT HelpDesk at (601) 979-2069.