Blackboard LTI 1.3 (External Tool) Release Notes
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There are two versions of the Blackboard LTI integration: LTI 1.1 and LTI 1.3. The release notes found on this page are for LTI 1.3. To view changes to our LTI 1.1 integration, check out the relevant release note page.
We've made improvements to the the Assignment Inbox for large class sizes
We have resolved an issue that caused long load times in the LTI Assignment Inbox for courses containing a high volume of students.
We've made some changes to the Analytics Dashboard
We have fixed an issue where the date and time of assignments did not reflect accurately in the Analytics Dashboard. Please note the times in the ‘Submissions Timeline’ are rounded to the nearest hour.
We have fixed an issue that would display incorrect grading calculations when displaying custom rubrics in the Online Grading Report section of the Analytics Dashboard.
We have also improved the display of information in this area. The bar graph no longer shows up when there are no assignments, and the date formats have been made consistent.
Instructors can now save "allow any file type" as default in Assignment Settings
We have resolved an issue that was preventing instructors from saving assignments with the “allow any file type” setting in the Assignment Settings area for future use. Previously, the administrator account’s default settings were overriding this instructor setting in the LTI assignment setup.
Expect accurate submission timestamps again within Blackboard Learn Grade Center
Some institutions reported occasional timestamp discrepancies between when a student makes a submission in Turnitin and the corresponding timestamp displayed in the Blackboard Learn Grade Center. This issue was due to some submission callbacks being skipped caused by delays in the report generation process. This has now been resolved for all future submissions following this release.
Paper deletion requests can now be made from within the LTI inbox
Building on the global release of paper deletion requests on April 13th, users can now directly request a paper deletion from within the LTI inbox.
For Administrators, the experience will continue to be exactly the same by managing requests via turnitin.com/turnitinuk.com. Check out the admin guide to learn more.
For Instructors, we’ve replicated the workflow from the core experience, but made it available in the LTI inbox itself. Check out the instructor guide to learn more.
Grades now pass back to the Gradebook in Ultra courses
Automatic grade pass back now works with all Ultra courses, regardless of the number of assignments included. Grades will now also automatically pass back to the Blackboard Learn Gradebook once the feedback release date passes, without the need for instructors to initiate this by interacting with the assignment.
This resolves the known issue.
Turnitin can now be embedded in a learning platform when 3rd party cookies are disabled
We have made changes to allow Turnitin to remain embedded in the learning platform, regardless of whether 3rd party cookies are enabled or disabled. Previously when 3rd party cookies were disabled, Turnitin would open in a new tab and would also occasionally fail to launch. These changes currently apply to users of Blackboard Learn, and will be available with other learning platforms in the future.
Ultra Courses can now automatically pass back their grades
As a partial fix to the known issue, Ultra Courses will now automatically update the Gradebook once the Feedback Release Date has passed. We’ll update the Gradebook after the first interaction of an instructor or student with Turnitin after the Feedback Release Date has passed.
Automatic grade pass back currently only works with courses with fewer than ten assignments. Courses with more than ten assignments must still manually add grades to the Gradebook. We are currently working on a further fix to add automatic grade pass back to all course sizes.
Access restored to users within the People's Republic of China
A pathing issue between Turnitin's servers and users within the People's Republic of China had prevented these users from using our integrations. This has now been resolved and access has been restored.
This change resolves the known issue.
Online Grading Report will load in classes with more than 100 submissions
A bug would cause the Online Grading Report to get stuck in a loading state when a class had more than 100 submissions. We've fixed this bug and this unintended limit should no longer prevent the report from loading.
Unnecessary pronouns removed from the paper view request email
Turnitin is committed to providing an equitable and inclusionary experience for everyone who uses our products. While this may be a relatively minor change, we are actively looking for areas we can improve in all aspects of Turnitin.
In this change, we found that the Paper View Request email unnecessarily gendered the instructor and did not account for users who do not identify as a binary gender.
Before this change:
This instructor has found a '23%' match to this paper in a paper submitted to his or her 'Natural History' class.
After this change:
The requesting instructor has found a '23%' match to this paper in their 'Natural History' class
Introducing the Learning Analytics Dashboard
Available from within the LTI Assignment Inbox, these summary statistics show how students have engaged with their assignment and gives instructors actionable insights into the similarity found within an assignment. With a visual view of student progress, it can allow instructors to reflect on what is working within their class and how to adjust their strategy to meet learning aims. Read more about the features of the Learning Analytics Dashboard.
Also as a part of this release, the Online Grading Report has moved from its own tab to be included with the other statistics in the Analytics tab. All functionality is the same with the only difference being that reports are now downloaded via the Export Data button with the rest of the data about the assignment. Learn more about the online grading report, or how to download it.
Flags in the LTI Assignment Inbox
We’ve added the ability to view which documents have document Flags in them directly from the LTI Assignment Inbox. Now, you can focus your investigations into problem papers without having to look through all of the submissions in an assignment.
Now available in Japanese
A bug had prevented the interface from appearing in Japanese and would instead default to English. We've fixed this problem and LTI 1.3 can now be accessed in Japanese as intended.
Download the Turnitin Digital Receipt directly from your confirmation message
Digital Receipts can now be directly downloaded from within the confirmation message shown when a file has been submitted successfully. Don't worry if you forget to download it straight away; use the receipt icon to download it anytime after submission.
2021 July 27th
Enhanced synonym swapping detection
One way people try to get around similarity matching is by changing words within plagiarized content to similar synonyms in the hope that we can’t detect these changes. With this release, we will catch more instances of this method of academic misconduct while not increasing false positives.
This enhancement will help to improve the accuracy of the Similarity Report and provide actionable insights instructors can use to promote original writing with their students.
As this is a refinement to how we generate the Similarity Report, you don't have to do anything to enable it. Any Similarity Reports generated from now on will simply be even more accurate than they were before if someone tries to cheat in this way.
Thanks for the Feedback!
Thanks for the feedback! We are so pleased that users are keen to work with us to make Turnitin a tool that truly reflects your needs. The user interview sign-up form will be going away for a little while as we start our first phase of testing. Worry not! It will be back later when we should have some exciting things to show you.
You can opt-out our user research at any time by following the 'Unsubscribe' link found in any email we send you.
Turnitin’s similarity scores become more accurate and informative today
Similarity is at the heart of Turnitin and we always look for methods to make our reports more accurate and representative of the wide variety of sources students now have access to. Recently, we’ve refined how our similarity scores are calculated, and we’re excited to share it with our you.
While any changes to individual reports are relatively minor, it continues our commitment to providing Instructors with a reliable and genuine representation of a submission’s similarity.
This release includes:
- Better detection and exclusion accuracy of quotes
- Better prioritization of internet sources (for example prioritizing a match against wikipedia.com instead of randomblog.com)
- Better matching more content across our various databases
As always, all submissions to Turnitin are checked against our latest and most accurate similarity technologies. You may notice a small percentage of previously submitted papers experience minor changes as we continue to innovate.
Any questions? Check out our FAQ.
User Feedback Button has been added to Feedback Studio
Let’s talk! We want your help to shape the future of Turnitin. A User Feedback Button has been added to the Similarity Report viewer, allowing you to volunteer yourself to possibly become involved with surveys, one-on-one interviews, or previews of potential new products and features. This button is only visible for instructors.
If you would like to get involved, simply select the gray icon of the waving person on the panel within a Similarity Report. Complete the Sign-Up form to be entered into our database of potential participants. If you change your mind at any time, simply unsubscribe to any participation emails you receive.
We look forward to working with you!
Digital Receipts reflect the latest draft
When a file is submitted to Turnitin, we record the date and time it reaches us. A bug had caused us to only show the time of the first upload, even when we have received multiple drafts. Now, the date of the digital receipt will reflect the latest draft.
Faster saving voice comments
Audio comments will now save to Turnitin significantly more quickly. If you've experienced a delay in comments saving in the past, you'll now notice that the process will only take a matter of a few seconds.
Voice comments now use HTML5
At the end of 2020, Adobe will deprecate their Flash technology in favor of other open standards. As a part of this, all major browsers have also announced their removal of support.
To help ensure an effortless transition between the two technologies, we have made the change earlier than the deadline. As of this release, we now use HTML5 to record voice comments for users. You should notice little to no difference in how you use Turnitin (except things might be just a little faster!).
A new 'Paraphrasing' QuickMark set
When referenced correctly, paraphrasing can be perfectly acceptable in a well-written essay. This new QuickMark set will give students an extra helping hand by giving you a simple and clear way of indicating parts of an assignment than might need a little extra attention. You'll find this QuickMark set already available to you in your QuickMark library.
Instructors can now submit on behalf of students for all assignment types
It is now possible for instructors to submit on behalf of their students for all assignment types, including anonymous. In the LTI inbox, there is a new “Submit on behalf of student” field, that can be used to select a particular student in the class. For anonymous assignments, the student submission will continue to remain anonymous within the assignment inbox. If a selected student has already submitted, we will inform you with a pop-up message before you proceed with a resubmission.
Students can now view their submission and instructor feedback without receiving error messages
It was discovered that a small number of students were receiving error messages when attempting to open their submission or view QuickMarks left by their instructor. This has now been resolved and students can view their papers and feedback without issue.
Grading Form bugs have been resolved
Our engineering team have been working on a few intermittent bugs that have been interfering with applying grades to Grading Forms. You may have experienced one of the following:
Grades may not have updated if they were applied or edited by navigating quickly through submissions using the arrows within Feedback Studio.
A grade may not have saved if applied before Feedback Studio had loaded fully after opening.
Selecting Apply to Grade may not have saved the criterion or rubric score.
These have all been resolved.
More accurate bibliography exclusions
For English language papers, Turnitin no longer requires the use of beginning and terminating phrases to identify a Bibliography. We now use a machine learning algorithm to understand the paper on a deeper level and dynamically exclude content with much greater accuracy. You should notice far fewer 'false positives' in your Similarity Reports when excluding the bibliography.
Read more on our bibliography exclusion page.
Code no longer automatically replaces certain text within Feedback Studio comments
If an instructor were to include an ampersand (&) or the word "prompt" within their inline comment on a student's paper, it would appear as & and < respectively. This has now been resolved and these phrases and symbols can be used as normal.
A new notification before your session expires
Striking a balance between user convenience and account security is important to us. When we expire a session, we only do it to ensure that the person who returns to continue the session is still the person who started it.
We start the clock once we stop receiving any active input from the user. After three hours have elapsed without input, we will show a notification. This notification says that in 10 minutes your session will expire, but that you can use the Extend Session button to keep grading. Once the 10 minutes have passed, you'll have to log in again.
If you are writing a particularly long comment, and know you are about to take a break, navigate outside of the comment box to ensure that it saves.
When we expire a session, all unsaved work is lost. Saving happens automatically when we detect input from the user. However, in some cases, it's possible that the sync didn't happen because the rest of the page wasn't interacted with.
e-Rater settings now included when using the ‘save as default’ option
In the assignment settings, the e-Rater settings weren’t being saved when the ‘save as default’ option was being selected. We’ve fixed this now, and all e-Rater settings you have set will be saved correctly.
Turnitin Feedback Studio Viewer session extension
After listening to customer feedback, we’ve extended the session time for our viewer from one hour to three. This change means instructors will have longer to grade and leave feedback without worrying about being timed out.
Rubric manager issues have been resolved
Some users had experienced varying problems with our rubric manger such as not being able to select a rubric, create a new one, and formatting issues. The bug that caused this issue has been fixed and users should be able to use rubrics again as a part of their assignment.
‘Save as default’ assignment option now supports more settings
Previously, the ‘Enable Translated Matching’ and ‘Allow submission for any file type’ options would not be saved for future assignments when the ‘save as default’ checkbox is selected. We have now ensured that these settings will also be carried over to new assignments if the ‘save as default’ option is selected.
We are now fully compliant for the release of Chrome 80
With the release of Chrome 80 fast approaching, we have ensured that users will be able to use our products in Chrome without further disruption. We have made the required changes to our cookies for all of our LMS integrations and Single Sign-On integration Shibboleth to ensure that users will no longer encounter warnings about 3rd party cookies if they are enabled.
Star rubrics and grading forms for easy access
Time for a little (early) Spring cleaning! This new feature allows you to star up to five rubrics and grading forms. Starring a rubric or grading form will move it to the top of the Rubric and Form manager for easy access. Starred rubrics and grading forms will stand out amongst all the others in this and future assignments.
Improvements to anonymous marking
Previously, if an instructor were to grade a paper within an anonymous assignment, the grade would appear alongside the student’s name within the blackboard grade book. To improve the anonymity of the assignment, grades will now only be passed to the grade book once the feedback release date has passed. Instructors will now see the “Grade Now” prompt for all students within the assignment, which will allow a grade to be manually entered in the Blackboard grade book, if required. Once a student submits their paper, instructors will be alerted with a “New Submission” notice beneath the “Grade Now” option.
A new sub-menu for rubrics and grading forms
By default, we provide many rubrics and grading forms to help you get started with your Turnitin account from the very first time you access it. However, as we have a global community of instructors and institutions, it is only natural that not every rubric is relevant to every instructor. To help with the organization of rubrics and grading forms, we’ve moved them to their own sub-menus within the Rubric and Grading Form Manager. This sub-menu is more visible on the screen, making it easier to scroll through and find the one you would like to attach to an assignment. The currently attached rubric or grading form is always visible from the top-level of the menu.
Assignment instructions are now editable
When creating a folder in Blackboard, you can set a description for the folder. Unfortunately, this clashed with the assignment instructions you can add to a Turnitin assignment passed during a deep linking launch. This clash caused both to display, but it would lock the field so you could not rectify the problem. We are working with Blackboard to prevent the clash from happening in the future, however, until then this field is now editable, and you can modify these fields on a case-by-case basis.
Instructor preferences can be saved when using Deep Linking
When creating a content item, you'll now find the option to 'Save these Settings for future use'. If you select this option, any settings you have chosen will be set as defaults the next time create an assignment.
The following settings will not save when using this option
- Enable Translated Matching
- Enable grammar checking using ETS® e-rater® technology
- Allow submission for any file type
Maximum grade will now lock after the initial deep linking launch
The maximum grade for an assignment can be edited anytime before the first LTI launch. After the initial launch, it will be locked to prevent any accidental changes. A bug had allowed editing after the initial launch, but it has now been fixed.
You can now use more than ten groups in an LTI 1.3 course
We are now able to support more than ten groups when using groups in a LTI 1.3 course. Would you like to learn more about using groups? Check out our guide.