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Online Rooms

Online rooms allow you to collaborate with your class in an online environment.

This page has information on how to:

Add Online Rooms to the Navbar

First, you must add Online Rooms to your course navigation bar, as it is not added by default.

  1. Hover over the navbar and click the small pencil that appears on the left-hand side of the navbar. edit pencil

  2. The Edit Navbar screen appears. Scroll down to the Links section and click Add Links in the desired section.

  3. In the Add Links window that  appears, scroll down and select Online Rooms from the list.

  4. Click Add.

  5. If desired, you may change where the Online Rooms link will appear in the navbar by clicking and dragging the link to the desired location.

  6. When the Online Rooms link is situated as desired, click Save and Close. Notice that Online Rooms now appears in the navbar.

Create a Room and Add Attendees

  1. Click Online Rooms in the navbar.

  2. Click New Room.
  3. On the screen that appears, you give the online room an appropriate name and, if desired, a description.

  4. There are two options in the Room Visibility section:
    1. Restricted Room indicates that the room will only be available to part of the class.
    2. Public Room indicates that the entire class will have access to that room.

  5. In the Availability section, choose the start and end dates and times.

  6. In the Advanced Properties section, click Show Room Restrictions to view the options.

    Note: It may be beneficial to check the Participants have unrestricted access to all resources option, which gives students access to anything you may upload to the room.

    Note: If you choose to check Moderators can view all private chats, alert the students to the fact that this has been enabled.

    Note: By default, the room will open 15 minutes before the meeting officially starts. You may change this as desired. It is advisable to increase that number (perhaps to 30 minutes) for the first meeting, as students may need more time to get everything set up.

  7. In the Email Notification section, you may choose to send users a notification email.

  8. Click Add Attendees. The following window opens:

    Add Attendees

    Note: There are most likely multiple pages of users. Use the controls near the top right of the window to navigate to subsequent pages.

    Note: You will automatically see all administrators present in lists. Don't invite these users, as they do not require access (they are only there to troubleshoot).

  9. There are multiple options in this window for viewing users:
    1. In the Users tab, you will see users listed individually. Simply select what users you wish to include.

    2. In the Groups/Sections tab, you will see individual sections of the course. You select the desired section, and all users included in that section will be added.

      Note: If you wish for attendees to have different roles, you will need to add the users individually instead of as a group. When you add a group, you may only designate one role for the entire group.

    3. In the All tab, you will see both individual users and groups. Select the desired individuals and group

      Note: No matter how you view the users, you can scroll down to the bottom of the window to view the users you have selected thus far.

  10. When you have selected all the desired users or groups, click Add.

  11. You will then be returned to the New Room screen. You can see that the users or groups you have selected appear in the Attendees section near the bottom, along with their roles. To edit an individual's role:
    1. Click the edit pencil corresponding to his or her name that appears in the Role column edit 

    2. Choose from the dropdown menu whether you wish the user to be a Participant, Moderator--Limited, or Moderator

    3. Click Apply.

  12. When you are finished, click Save.

Online Rooms System Check

Follow the directions below to run a system check, which will ensure that all the features of D2L will run properly on your computer. Specifically for Online Rooms, you must have a compatible version of JavaScript.

  1. Go to the D2L homepage at

  2. In approximately the middle of the page, you will see a section that states: To ensure that all of the features of D2L will work properly with your computer system, do a System Check. Click the words System Check to run this check.

  3. You will see a list of the checks run on your computer system, along with the results.

Join an Online Room

  1. To join your online room, click Online Room in the navbar.

  2. If a room is active, you will see Join to the right of the room name. Click Join to enter the room.

    Online Rooms Join

  3. Blackboard Collaborate will then begin launching.
To view directions for accessing collaborate in Internet Explorer or Firefox, follow the directions below. If you are using Safari, follow the directions for Accessing Collaborate in D2L with Safari.

Accessing Collaborate in D2L with Internet Explorer or Firefox

Instructors may use Collaborate for class participation and to share information and documents in an online session.

  1. After you click on the link, a yellow and white banner will appear at the bottom of the page. Click Allow Once.

    Online Rooms Popup
    Online Rooms Popup
  2. A pop-up window may appear, asking you if you would like to try again. Click Retry.

    Online Rooms Retry

  3. Click on the Join button again.

  4. A new window will open to launch Blackboard Collaborate. Another yellow and white bar will appear at the bottom of the page. Click Open. Java will begin launching Collaborate.

  5. The application will download and another security warning will appear. Check the box next to Always trust content from this publisher.

    Online Rooms Allow

  6. Click Run.

  7. A Collaborate dialog box will appear. Click Accept for the Session Participant Agreement.

    Online Rooms Accept

  8. From the Select connection speed pull-down menu, select your connection. If you are not sure what your connection type is, choose a low-speed connection (users accessing this tool from on campus should select Cable/D2L or LAN).

  9. Click OK. You are now a participant in the online room, and will see a window resembling the one below:

    Online Room Screen

Establish Audio and Video Settings

You are now a participant in the online room, and should now determine your audio and video settings.

Audio Settings

  1. Click the Audio Setup Wizard icon Audio Setup, found in the upper left of the screen, to change your audio and microphone settings.

  2. You will see a list of the audio devices you have available. Choose the desired device and click OK. It is recommended that you use headphones instead of speakers.

  3. The Speaker Setup screen appears. Follow the directions on the screen to adjust the volume to a comfortable listening level. Click Stop once it is set to a good volume level.

  4. The Speaker Setup Confirmation screen will appear. Click Yes to continue.

  5. The Audio Setup Wizard will then bring up the Select Audio Input Device screen. Choose the desired microphone device from the list and click OK.

  6. The Microphone Setup screen is displayed. Follow the directions to adjust the microphone volume. Click Stop when you are done. You will then be able to play what you recorded to see if the volume level is acceptable. The Microphone Setup Confirmation screen appears. Follow the directions and click Yes or No as applicable.

  7. The Setup Complete screen appears. Read what is stated on the screen, then click OK.
You will be returned to the main screen. Here, as the moderator, you have the power to set the maximum number of simultaneous talkers you wish to allow.

  1. Click Tools in the top menu.

  2. Go to Audio and choose Maximum Simultaneous Talkers...

  3. The default is automatically set to one, which means that when one person has Talk selected, no one else can speak. The maximum number of speakers can be set to six.

    Recommended Setting: It may be a good idea to change the setting so the number of simultaneous talkers is equal to the number of moderators in the room plus one.

  4. Click OK.

Video Settings

If you have a different video source you wish to use, or if your computer doesn't have a webcam, you should have this source connected to the computer before entering the online room.

  1. When in the Online Room, Video found in the sidebar on the left. Video will start transmitting, as you can see in the preview window.

    Online Rooms Video

  2. If you wish to change the video settings, click the dropdown menu found in the top right corner of the sidebar and choose Camera Settings from the list.

    Camera Settings

  3. In the window that appears, you will see a variety of options. If you have another video source available you wish to use instead of the default webcam of the computer, you can select it from the dropdown menu.


You will be returned to the main screen. Here, as the moderator, you have the power to set the maximum number of simultaneous talkers you wish to allow.

  1. Click Tools in the top menu.

  2. Go to Video and select Maximum Simultaneous Cameras...

  3. The default is automatically set to one, which means that when one person has Video selected, no one else can speak. The maximum number of cameras in use at one time can be set to six.

  4. Click OK.

Record and Archive a Session

  1. In the upper right-hand corner of the screen, you will see a Record button. Click this to begin recording your session.

  2. A window will appear, asking for confirmation. Click OK to continue. You will also receive voice confirmation that the session is indeed being recorded, and the button will change to indicate that the session is being recorded: Recording Session

  3. To stop recording at any time, simply click the Recording button again. A window will appear, asking for confirmation. Click OK to stop recording. You will also receive voice confirmation that the session is no longer being recorded.

Add Content

To upload files to your online room, you will want to use the File Transfer Library.

  1. Select Window at the top of the screen and choose Show File Transfer Library.

  2. From the window that appears, you can upload documents to the library. Click the select a file icon in the upper left of the window: Select File

  3. Browse to the desired file and click Open.

  4. Depending on the size of the file, it will take a minute or two to upload to the transfer library. You can watch the progress of the files uploading. When they are finished, the file will say Complete.


  5. Once you have uploaded the file, you can prompt the attendees of the room to alert them that the documents are available. To do this, select the document from the list and click the prompt recipients icon at the top of the window: Prompt Recipients

  6. If you wish to delete content from the File Transfer Library, simply select the document from the list and click the trash icon at the top of the window: Trash

Add PowerPoint Presentations

  1. Click the Load Content button at the top right of the screen. Note that only moderators will be able to use this function.

  2. Browse to the desired PowerPoint presentation and click Open.

    The PowerPoint will take some time to load (the amount of time depends on the size of the file).

  3. Once the PowerPoint has loaded, it will appear in the Collaborate screen. The Page Explorer automatically opens. This allows you to navigate by double-clicking on the desired slide. You may keep this open if you wish, or close it.

  4. You can also navigate through your PowerPoint using the arrows near the top right of the screen. Jump several slides at once using the dropdown menu to the right of the arrows.

    PowerPoint Navigation

    Note: It is important to know that when you bring a PowerPoint presentation into an Online Room, the slides are inserted as images. Therefore, any active hyperlinks or animation you had included in the PowerPoint will not work. If you wish to link to a website, it is easiest click the Web Tour icon near the top of the screen and follow the directions provided on that screen (note the Follow Me checkbox option, which forces students to view the desired website).

    Web Tour Page

  5. Optional: If the Follow checkbox is selected, it requires the students to follow along with the PowerPoint as you view it.

  6. Optional: Click the Explore More icon Explore More at the top right of the screen to explore other pages while leaving others on the current page. When this is selected the arrows will turn red and you will see a red outline around the slide you are viewing.

  7. Optional: You can add or delete a page of your PowerPoint directly in Collaborate using the New Page and Delete Page buttons near the top left of the screen.

Help Desk

For more information or to request a service, contact the LTS Help Desk:
HelpDeskLogo715-836-5711 | | OL1106