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Faculty Services: Blackboard Support

A guide to services for Faculty at Texas Tech University School of Law Library

Helpful Information fro TTU Worldwide eLearning

Blackboard courses are categorized into two types – the development shell and the live shell.  The development shell is where we apply a course design template that includes student and instructor resources as well as other tools to jumpstart the development of your course. 

A development shell is strictly an area for developing your course.  This request can take up to three business days to complete.  You would choose this option if you planned to develop a course for the future. 

To request a development shell, go to the main campus Blackboard page and fill out an individual request form for each Blackboard course you wish to develop. 

Before the semester begins, you will need to request the semester-based live shell (see the schedule below for semester availability dates) connected to the Banner SIS and auto-populated with all the students enrolled in the course, which then stays synced with the Banner enrollments for the course.

To request a live shell, go to the Blackboard live shell request page.

A list of all the courses for which you are the instructor of record in Banner will be displayed – select the ones you wish a Blackboard live shell to be created. The live shell request is processed within an hour of submitting the request, and you will not receive a confirmation email.

Fall shells – July 20

Spring shells – November 20

All Summer shells – May 20

Since the live shell does not contain content at the time of creation, you can use the following instructions to copy an existing Blackboard development or live shell into your new semester-based live shell.

  1. IMPORTANT: Open the BB9 original course that contains the content you want to copy.
  2. On the Control Panel, expand the Packages and Utilities section and click Course Copy.
  3. Click the Browse button to select the “Destination course.”  Locate the live shells from the new semester - make sure to select the course starting with the current Banner term code.  Click Submit.
  4. Check the Select All box to duplicate the existing course into the Live Shell.
  5. Scroll down to the File Attachments section -  it is very important that you select the third option, “Copy links and copies of the content (include entire course home folder)
  6. DO NOT check the box to copy enrollments!
  7. Click Submit.  Do not open the newly copied course until you have received the email confirmation sent to your TTU address – this usually takes just a few minutes depending on the size of your course.  Opening the Live Shell before the copy process is complete can disrupt the copy process and cause some content to not copy correctly.

Courses will be available, by default, the first day of classes. You can override this to make the course available sooner by doing the following:

1. From the Control Panel, click on Customization

2. Click on Properties

3. Set Availability to YES – this overrides the term start date

4. For Course Duration, choose Select Dates

5. Choose the start date and end date that you would like the students to be able to view the course

6. Click Submit

You will be able to login to Blackboard Learn at  Click the “login to Blackboard” button.  Logging into Blackboard requires an active eRaider account. 

The Blackboard Support team is located in the office of Worldwide eLearning in the Texas Tech Bank Plaza on the corner of 19th and University (parking is free!). They can also be reached by email at or by telephone at 806-742-7227.

We recommend attending Blackboard training.  Go to the TLPDC event calendar to enroll for upcoming Blackboard training sessions. All Blackboard training takes place at the Teaching, Learning, and Professional Development Center (TLPDC) on the first floor of the University Library on campus. 

Visit and bookmark the Blackboard Instructor Support FAQs website to view detailed instructions and how-to guides for the most commonly used tools in Blackboard Learn. 

For assistance and tips on designing, developing, and/or teaching an online course, TTU Worldwide eLearning's Instructional Design Team can assist you through one-on-one consultations (by appointment for face-to-face consultations). For more information, contact TTU Worldwide eLearning via email at, or telephone (806-742-7227). 

The Instructional Design Team is located in the office of Worldwide eLearning in the Texas Tech Bank Plaza on the corner of 19th and University (parking is free!). 

Documentation and Helpful Guides