In order for Blackboard to run smoothly, you’ll need to have the right hardware and software on your end. You may be able to get by with less than is required, but it’s likely that certain features won’t work or won’t be as reliable.

Here are the recommended specs for using Blackboard:

Operating Systems

An operating system (or OS) is the software that manages a computer’s basic functions, such as scheduling tasks, launching applications, and controlling your external devices. It’s important that this software is up-to-date.

For a laptop or desktop computer you’ll need:

  • Windows users: Windows 10 or 8, preferably Windows 10
  • Mac users: Macintosh OS 10.8.4 or higher preferably 10.14 Mojave or newer

Blackboard can also be used on a mobile device. The Blackboard app is available for iPhone, iPad and Android. You can also log into Blackboard directly from the browser on your mobile device. Make sure to update both your mobile OS and the app itself to avoid any potential operating issues.

Internet Speeds

Blackboard can be accessed from any computer or mobile device with Internet access. However, it’s important to remember that slower Internet access speeds might make Blackboard work more slowly, especially when trying to complete data-heavy tasks like an upload/download or streaming video files. This can be a problem when working on time-sensitive tasks.

It is recommended that you have at least 1 Mbps or higher for cable connections or 512 Kbps for DSL, though the faster the speed, the better the performance.


Browsers are the software that is used to access the Internet on your computer or mobile devices. Blackboard should work on most desktop and mobile browsers including: Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. It is important that these browsers are up-to-date. For these supported browsers, these are the supported versions:

  • Google Chrome™, most recent stable version and two preceding versions.
  • Mozilla® Firefox®, most recent stable version and two preceding versions.
  • Apple® Safari® for MacOS and iOS, two most recent major versions.
  • Microsoft® Edge®1 most recent stable version and two preceding versions

Not sure if you’re covered? Run the browser checker to see whether Blackboard Learn supports your browser.

NOTE: While Blackboard technically runs in all of these browsers, we heavily recommend using either Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. Some features in Blackboard do not work well in Safari or Edge.

Also, your browser settings should be set at the following:

  • Accept all cookies
  • Allow cross-site tracking (on Mac, iPhone, and iPad)
  • Enable Java and JavaScript
  • Disable pop-up blockers

If you have any questions or notice features aren’t working in specific browsers, please let us know!

Computer Settings

Commonly used virus protection software products, like McAfee or Norton, should not interfere with accessing Blackboard, however, Ad blockers can sometimes interfere with Blackboard integrations. We recommend disabling ad blockers for Blackboard. 

If you access Blackboard at home and you use firewall protection, you may have issues with accessing your course materials. You will need to adjust your firewall settings to resolve this. If you’re having these problems on a COD device, please call or email the IT helpdesk.

Please let us know immediately if you’re having repeated issues with accessing or operating Blackboard. We can work with our IT department to resolve them.