New Release of Blackboard Academic Suite(TM) Boosts Productivity and Promotes 21st Century Skills

Developed in Collaboration with Blackboard Users, Release 8.0 / Features Powerful Tools to Drive Student Achievement

Washington, DC, (PresseBox) - Blackboard Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBB) has announced the general availability of Release 8.0 of the Blackboard Academic Suite ((tm)), a standards-based product suite that engages learners and drives student achievement. The new release includes a number of important enhancements that empower education institutions to cultivate 21st Century Learning skills.

Drawing upon one of the industry's largest communities of practice, Blackboard has collaborated with its innovative user community to enhance the Blackboard Academic Suite, making it a more powerful instructional tool for teachers and learners at all levels.

One of the premier enhancements is the Blackboard Grade Center (tm), a completely redesigned smart grading tool with an easy-to-use interface that simplifies the grading process while providing powerful analytic capabilities for teachers. Additionally, teachers can now email students directly from the Blackboard Grade Center and create and share printable progress reports for better student feedback and communication.

"We are constantly seeking feedback on how our products can enhance teaching and learning," said Juan Lucca, President of Blackboard International. "By partnering with our valued user community to develop Release 8.0, Blackboard was able to design a solution that meets the needs of every institution. The Blackboard Academic Suite empowers students and teachers to foster the 21st century skills that today's students need to succeed."

Using the new Self and Peer Assessment tool, students can better cultivate important critical thinking skills. Created by a Blackboard user, the tool enables students to review and grade their own work, based on teacher-set criteria, so they can easily monitor their own progress. Students can also anonymously review and grade work submitted by their classmates, encouraging them to learn from their peers and build important critical thinking skills while monitoring their own progress.

For Librarians and IT Managers, employing multiple systems across an institution can be costly and inhibit collaboration among different departments and campus groups. The Blackboard Content System(tm), a collaborative content management solution, now includes enhancements to make it possible for institutions build learning communities by creating, managing and distributing digital content. Students and educators can share, discover and reuse materials through collaborative workflow and Reusable Objects. Librarians and Administrators can monitor how content is being used with the new 360(degree) view that provides statistics, tracking, permissions and other information about specific content.

Additionally, the enhanced suite integrates SafeAssign(TM) by Blackboard, a plagiarism prevention service that not only helps students learn crucial citation and plagiarism rules, but also helps students and educators ensure originality without time-consuming investigations.

To learn more about specific features and view purchasing information for the Blackboard Academic Suite, please visit www.blackboard.com

Blackboard Inc.

Blackboard Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBB) is a leading provider of enterprise software applications and related services to the education industry.

Founded in 1997, Blackboard enables educational innovations everywhere by connecting people and technology. Millions of people use Blackboard everyday at academic institutions around the globe, including colleges, universities, K-12 schools and other education providers, as well as textbook publishers and student-focused merchants that serve education providers and their students. Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia.

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