Can you program a course in 2 languages? We have our course translated into 2 languages - would be good if the student could easily toggle between french and english.
this depends on exactly what you mean and what languages you need.
It is possible for your Blackboard administrator to turn on additional languages and it it possible to allow students to toggle between the different languages. This would only effect the navigation built into Blackboard and will automatically translate and content you may have placed in the section.
You can tell your admin that the setting is in the "International" section of your install's settings.
Hope this helps
Thanks for your response. We have an obligation to offer our course in french and english. I understand that you can switch the BB components to different languages - but what about the course content? Does BB automatically translate the content - we already have it translated ourselves.
Hopefully I can explain this clearly... When you create a section/component - does the content management system provide a container for one language and a container for the other so that they are both associated with the same section and the proper content is displayed depending on the students language selection?
Currently the design of our course is very messy because we have to create 2 pages for each section/component (1 for each language) and this makes navigation complicated.
Blackboard will not translate your content. I don't see a way around you having to create 2 pages (one in each language).
The only suggestion I would have is On you home organizer page have two folders.
One folder would contain the French Content and the other Folder would contain the content Organized in English. This would maybe help in the organization and navigation since it down at th top level of the course.
As Harold pointed out, Blackboard Vista/CE and Blackboard LS "Classic" along with all the other major LMSs (Angel, D2L, Moodle, Sakai, etc) only provide switchable pre-developed language interfaces and do not translate content. If you have ever used Babblefish, Yahoo's Babel Fish, Google's Translate or similar translation services, you will see where automatic translation is subject to errors.
Since we are a Canadian institution and need to support both official languages, to extend Harold's suggestion of organizing English and French content into Folder organizer pages and Learning Modules, we also recommend using Selective Release and a "language preferences quiz" to help students set the correct content based on their language preferences.
Here's the basic steps...
1. Create a "Language" quiz with one multiple choice question with two answers , "Select your language of preference: A. French, B. English" with a correct answer and 1 point for "A". Set the quiz properties so there are unlimited attempts and the last attempt is recorded in the Grade Book.
2. Assuming two folders, one for English and one for French, apply selective release as follows:
For the French folder "Add Grade Criteria" of "Language Equal To 1"
For the English folder ""Add Grade Criteria" of "Language Equal To 0"
When the student takes the quiz, it will display the folder depending on the answer. By using "unlimited attempts" and "last attempt recorded in Grade Book", the student can toggle between the two folder of content.
You can expand the selective release to do either or both folders.
If you don't want to use the quiz, you can also create a column in the Grade Book that identifies the student's language preference to trigger selective release.
Some of the language instructors use a variation of this technique of selective release to hide all English content and only show the content in the language (example Spanish, East Asian, Cyrilic, etc) after the student completes the first or second quiz.
Hope this helps...
Thank you both.
Can I ask you some more questions regarding seperate language folders?
How do you organize assessments? Would all assessments from both languages show up in the same list?
One approach is to hide the Assessment tool in the left hand Course Menu. Put links to all the quizzes in the Folder organizer page or better yet, link the quizzes in a Learning Module along with the content. Same with assignments, web links and other content links unless you want all the students to participate in a single activity.
To clarify, I would suggest trying to put all content and content links (quizzes, discussion topics, assignments, web links, etc) in several learning modules for each language. It will be much easier to manage than putting a large number of content links in a Folder organizer page.
Thanks Bob - this is great. Would you still use the left nav menu and if so what would you show?
The Course Menu would show any tool or component that would be used by all students but cannot be separated through selective release or not worth keeping in separate areas. Calendar, announcements, mail, chat, roster, media library and web links along with My Grades and My Progress are the main ones.
You could also leave Learning Modules, Discussions and Assessments showing in the Course Menu, displaying all the content in both French and English for those students who are bilingual or don't mind seeing content in both languages.
We have set up the "language quiz" as suggested. I feel that this might be confusing to our students however because after they complete the quiz - they are directed to the assessments page. Many of our students are taking this course through adult continuing education and are unfamiliar with BB which is why we are trying to streamline everything as much as possible. The selective release by language is working wonderfully though and making the course more organized.
I guess in my mind I was seeing the language quiz show up as soon as the student enters the course the first time. When they complete the quiz they are redirected to the content page showing only their language of choice. When they leave the course and return - they then go directly to language specific content page depending on their saved answer to language quiz?
Do you have any advice? We are with the Canada govt and are required to offer the course in both english and french - making this look nice and be user-friendly is the challenge.
If you go with the quiz approach, a couple of additional suggestions:
1. In the quiz->Edit Properties, under "Submission Properties", add an additional submission message, such as "Please click on the "Course Content" button in the Course Menu" or something similar. You an even add in a little HTML code so the message stands out to the users.
2. To the quiz link itself, you can add a selective release condition that will actually make the link disappear if you do not want the students to reset the language preference after the first time.
In your previous message, "I was seeing the language quiz show up as soon as the student enters the course the first time. ", did you put a link to the quiz on the Home Page? You can even modify the icon and add a text description to "get their attention".
For example, in a course a colleague and I teach on "games in online learning", we have a fairly large image of the Monopoly (TM) "Go" square as the icon to a quiz link that simulates a dice roll. Once they complete the quiz, it disappears and the content to the course appears. We also have a submission message directing the student back to the Home Page.
PS, I'm at a Canadian university in western Canada and often have requests for assistance in setting up courses for dual languages.
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