Audio messages from instructor to students can be a very important and dynamic part of the online experience. Even if you are meeting in-person with your students, placing audio messages in parts of the course Blackboard site can provide explanations for difficult concepts that the student can play repeatedly while viewing other materials you have placed there. In fact, there are hundreds of uses for audio messages within Blackboard, and now with Blackboard 9 it is easier than ever to create them. I have created the following screen video that explains how (Play time = 8:48):
Wimba was recently acquired by Blackboard, so, as you saw from the video, the voice tools are now built-in to the content creation tools. The most common one, the voice authoring tool, has its own “mashup” creator and it is definitely the one that most instructors will use. Later, I will post on the other Wimba voice tools such as the voice board (an audible discussion board), the voice presenter (a way to audibly tour content slide-show style), the voice announcement tool,and a podcasting tool that has so far not gained any users at our institution.