Mac - System Preference Settings to Use Blackboard

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Mac Users Don't Have Scroll Bars in Blackboard

System Preferences from Apple Menu
Accessing System Preferences from Apple
If you are using Chrome, Safari or Firefox web browsers and are missing the Scrollbars when viewing the Grade Center in Blackboard, there is a quick and easy way to fix this issue. Blackboard is aware of the problem and will be addressing this in a future release, but for now, you will need to change your system preferences. Follow the steps below and click on the thumbnail images to expand:
System Preferences Show Scroll Bars
Show Scroll Bars Option
  • Click on the desktop to get to the Finder menu bar
  • Click on the "Apple" to reveal the Systems Preferences menu option
  • Click System Preferences and then click on General
  • Under the General Preferences, you will need to change the Show Scroll Bars to Always
  • This will allow the horizontal scroll bar to appear in the Grade Center. and make your experience much less frustrating!

Mac Users Having Problems with Blackboard Ultra and Cameras for Browsers (O/S 10.14 & 10.15)

"Browser settings that are enabled with checkbox selected"
Browser settings that are enabled with checkbox selected
If you are having problems trying to enable the camera/microphones on your system when using Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, you may have to adjust your System Preferences. Instructions to enable browsers access to webcams and microphones with the updated security settings introduced in macOS Mojave 10.14, macOS Catalina 10.15 are below:

Apple introduced new security settings in macOS Mojave 10.14 which may require users to manually grant their browsers permission to access the webcam and microphone. Note that the browser may indicate that it already has access to these devices, but will be unable to use them. (see Blackboard article 000050308)


  1. Quit any open browser windows for which permissions will be enabled.
  2. Click the Apple menu.
  3. Select System Preferences.
  4. Select Security & Privacy.
  5. Select the Privacy tab.
  6. Locate and select the Camera listing in the panel on the left.
  7. Ensure that the box is checked for each browser that should have permission to use this device.
  8. Locate and select the Microphone listing in the panel on the left.
  9. Ensure that the box is checked for each browser that should have permission to use this device.
  10. Close System Preferences, relaunch the browser and test the device in a Blackboard Collaborate Ultra or Blackboard Collaborate Original session.

In the example to right, Chrome has access to use the Camera while Firefox does not.

Mac Users Unable to App Share in Collab Ultra (OS 10.15 Catalina)

Users running Mac OS 10.15 Catalina may experience issues starting appshare while using Ultra, preventing them from sharing (Blackboard known issue - article 000052024)


  1. Select the Apple in the upper left-hand corner of the screen
  2. Select System Preference
  3. Select Security & Privacy
  4. Note:  You will need to unlock this window to make changes by clicking on the lock in the bottom left corner of this window.
  5. Select the Privacy tab at the top of the dialog box
  6. Scroll down on the left-hand side of the screen to Screen Recording
  7. Check the box next to Google Chrome or whichever browser you are running
  8. You will then be prompted to restart your browser
  9. Launch your Ultra session again and start appshare

Mac Users Having Zip Files Automatically Opened

For importing and exporting tests, surveys, rubrics and more in Blackboard, the Zip file format needs to be preserved. Users may have to adjust a setting on Safari to do so.


  1. Open Safari.
  2. On the tool bar, Select Safari and select Preferences.
  3. Under the General tab, uncheck the option Open “safe” files after downloading.

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