Blackboard SaaS Migration

College of DuPage will soon be moving from a self-hosted instance of Blackboard to a SaaS (software as a service) instance. While it might sound like a big leap, the upgrade to SaaS itself does not impact the design and functionality of individual courses and may offer a better overall user experience, despite downtime during set up.  Learn more below.


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The Basics

Self-Hosted vs. SaaS: What’s the Difference?

Currently, COD hosts Blackboard Learn on our own on-campus servers. This is known as being self-hosted. We will be moving to SaaS, or software as a service, hosting. This means that our instance of Blackboard will be hosted on Blackboard’s servers and will be accessed via the cloud. We will migrate existing content from our servers onto Blackboard servers. You will not lose access to any of your information (within the time span being migrated over), it will simply live in a different place. 

Learn More About SaaS Deployment

Head to Blackboard’s website to learn more about SaaS.


Blackboard Migration


The timeline will be updated as the migration plan is developed. 



Summer to Fall 2021

Migration and Update Planning

During the Fall term, COD will be working with Blackboard to plan the migration.

Fall 2021

Informational Sessions

LT will be providing information to faculty and staff on the migration process and impacts of SaaS, with training sessions as needed. 

December 2021 to January 2022

SaaS Migration

The system will be migrated to the SaaS environment between December 23, 2021 and January 17, 2022. 

Making the switch

Benefits of Migrating to SaaS

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Less Downtime

Updating Blackboard will no longer require periods of system downtime, allowing important updates to be made without service interruptions. 

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Fewer Bugs

Smaller, more frequent updates to the system allow known issues to be addressed more quickly and efficiently, making for a better user experience.

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Greater Stability

In the SaaS model, system resources are balanced in response to system load, providing greater stability during periods of peak usage.  

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Ultra Upgrade with Ease

Moving to SaaS provides the option to work towards the future implementation of the Blackboard Ultra experience. 

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24/7 Server Management

Blackboard staff manage and monitor server operations around the clock, keeping service interruptions and issues to a minimum. 

What to Expect

 How Will the SaaS Migration Impact Me?

Concerned about how the update will affect you? Here are some common questions and answers.

How will the update impact individual courses? Will I need to rebuild my courses?

Nope!  The upgrade to SaaS itself does not impact the design and functionality of individual courses, though it may offer a better user experience overall. Your courses will remain in the “Original” course view after the migration and you will use the same course content and functions after the migration.

What can I do now to prepare for the migration?

Prior to the SaaS migration you should:

  • Spring clean your courses. It is helpful to reduce your course size by moving course files to cloud storage solutions like YuJa and OneNote. Learn More
  • Export FA19 and SP20 courses you want to use or save going forward.  Courses that have not already been exported, backed up, or copied into more recent courses must be exported by Nov. 15th. 
  • Prepare for the SP22 term. Blackboard will be unavailable from December 23rd until January 17th. If you need to work on courses prior the completion date, you can do so now as any changes will be migrated over. 

Will any functions not carry over to SaaS?

While there are not any anticipated changes to Blackboard functions or integrations on SaaS, we will provide additional updates once we have consulted with Blackboard. If there are any issues, we will notify you ahead of time.



More About SaaS

Read more about the SaaS migration process on our blog.

Preparing for SaaS Part I: Exporting and Saving Course Content
Preparing for SaaS Part I: Exporting and Saving Course Content

Due to storage limitations on the Blackboard SaaS system we will be migrating to over Winter Break (learn more about SaaS here), IT will need to remove courses from FA19 and SP20 from our system earlier than the usual deletion dates. Courses from these terms will be...

Changes Coming to Bb in 2022: What to Expect for the SaaS Migration
Changes Coming to Bb in 2022: What to Expect for the SaaS Migration

You’ve likely heard that there are going to be some major changes coming to Blackboard next year. The first of these changes is that we are moving from our self hosted instance of Blackboard to a SaaS model. Here, we'll share what this change means, how it will impact...

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Learning Technologies

College of DuPage, BIC 3401

Phone: (630) 942-2490