Web Conferencing

What is it?

‌‌NUI Galway's main web conferencing service is Blackboard Collaborate Ultra which utilises highly responsive audio and video features along instant chat and interactive white board features to create a real time environment for all users. Blackboard Collaborate has a streamlined user interface which is very intuitive for all users. Web Conferencing solutions support live synchronous online learning, collaboration, and communication.

At NUI Galway, Blackboard Collaborate is embedded into the Blackboard Learn platform. This means that a Blackboard Collaborate meeting room is automatically created and ready for instructors and student use at the start of the academic year in all Blackboard modules. In addition to supporting live real-time teaching and learning, live sessions can be recorded and archived for review. 

A Quick Orientation for Blackboard Collaborate Ultra

‌ Video: Blackboard Collaborate with the Ultra experience user interface tour

The Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Interface

Benefits & Uses


Blackboard Collaborate can be used for:

  • Blended Learning delivery, providing a virtual classroom from anywhere both on and off campus
  • Collaborative Projects in research or administration providing virtual offices/meeting spaces both on and off the campus

Use Cases @ NUI Galway

At NUI Galway we have worked with teaching staff to identify four common use cases that Blackboard Collaborate is being used for:

Teaching and Learning online / Webinars allow flexible approaches to on and off-campus live online learning. This offers a useful solution for students who may be working and studying at the same time; for programmes with work placement components; and for those taking an Erasmus break overseas. 

Blackboard Collaborate can be used to enable external experts to contribute to teaching and learning programmes as Guest Lecturers. In this way they can deliver live webinars, participate in rea-time question and answer sessions; and permit those sessions to be recorded. A great way to enhance the teaching and learning experience.

Learning Support Tutorials can be managed online through scheduled timeslots allowing flexibility for instructors and students. Indeed, students can use Blackboard Collaborate to provide live online peer support to each other and for group work - all at the convenience of your keyboard.

Drop-In Student Time (Office Hours) allows instructors to operate a casual drop in session online. This can be schedules for particular periods for students to soundboard ideas, difficulties and to provide updates to their reserach work.

Online Workshops can be facilitated through Blackboard Collaborate through direct instruction, break-out group rooms, flipped classroom and open discussions by using the the shared tools and live audio/video facilities afforded by this learning platform.


Pedagogical Case Studies @ NUI Galway

Siobhán Smyth, School of Nursing and Midwifery
Tuesday 22 April 2014 1:00 – 2:00

Laura McLoughlin, Discipline of Italian; Schools of Languages, Literacies and Cultures
Wednesday 23 April 2014 1:00 – 2:00

Dorothy Ní Uigín & Éamon Ó Cofaigh, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge
Tuesday 29 April 2014 1:00 – 2:00

Paul Gormley
Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT)
Wednesday 30 April 2014 1:00-2:00


Get Started

New to Blackboard Collaborate Ultra?

Want to share help with your participants?

  •  Participants' Portal: help for participants on getting started, joining a session, viewing recordings, etc.


If you are giving a Blackboard Ultra Collaborate session, it is recommended you access it up to 30 minutes prior to your session start time, in order to prepare and upload any presentation slides. If you have any technical difficulties prior to or during your session, please report the issue to blackboard directly from within the application, or check out their troubleshooting advice. 

Troubleshooting: Known issues, reporting an issue