What to Expect When Connecting to Blackboard Collaborate

Are you about to connect to a Collaborate session for the first time? Here's what to expect:

  1. If this is your first time joining a Collaborate session, you will be prompted to download and install the Collaborate Launcher.   Use the menu to select your platform (Windows or Mac) and then click on the Download button:  

  2. Installation instructions for the Collaborate Launcher will depend on your operating system, as well as which Web browser you are using.    Windows users please see Installing the Launcher on Windows.   Mac users please see Installing the Launcher on Mac

  3. After installing the Collaborate Launcher, return to your Web browser and click on the Join button: 

  4. On the Session Login page, type in your first and last names (a space between them is fine):

    Enter your first and last name

  5. Wait a few seconds for the meeting download to begin. Collaborate will download a tiny file to your computer (which is a "pointer" to the session).   The file will typically be named either "dropin.collab" or "meeting.collab".  

    What you do next will depend on your operating system and the Web browser that you are using.  Windows users please see Joining a Session on Windows.  Mac users please see Joining a Session on Mac.

  6. After opening the .collab file, the Collaborate session will launch.   The first time you join a Collaborate session, it may take a few minutes for the application files to download, during which time you may see no sign of activity.   Do not worry.   Eventually, you should see an application verification window similar to the following:

     Collaborate Launcher Verification Window

  7. Shortly thereafter, you should see a Blackboard Collaborate status window while the session is loading:

    Blackboard Collaborate session is loading

  8. The first time connecting from a new computer, you will be asked to accept the Session Participant Agreement. Click on the Accept button:

    Blackboard Collaborate session is loading

    Also, the first time connecting from a new computer, you will be asked to set your connection speed. Use the pulldown menu:

    Select appropriate connection speed

  9. You'll wait while the connection is established and authentication is completed:

    connection indicator

  10. When you see this screen, you'll know your connection was successful. You'll see your name in the list of participants in the upper left of the screen:

    After connecting, see your name in the participant list

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