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Blackboard 9.1 Testing Best Practices for Students

Preparing for an online test

Make sure you are using a supported browser and operating system

The list of supported browsers and operating systems for the current version of Blackboard can be found at

Please note that mobile devices (smartphones, tablet computers) do not have supported operating systems and should not be used for Blackboard testing.

Run the “Test Your Browser” Module


The Browser Test tool performs a series of diagnostic tests to help users identify and/or resolve common configuration problems. The Browser Test module provides ample data for configuring your computer to work more efficiently with Blackboard. If you haven’t installed this module, visit the Browser Test Module PDF document for instructions.

This module will check for:

    • Supported Browsers
    • Check to ensure you have a compatible version of Java.  Click the “Java Test” button on the Browser Test results page. You should have Java version 6 . If you don’t, click the free download link on the Free Java Download at the java website All you need is the “JRE” file.
    • Check to ensure pop-ups are turned off.
    • Check to ensure third party file types can be viewed.
Do not rely on your battery Be sure to plug in to an outlet.
Do not use wireless internet connection and  avoid hotspots Plug your Ethernet cable directly into your router or modem.  If this is not possible, use one of our labs to take your exam. Lab availability information is found at


While Taking an Online Test

Save as you go

Save at least every few minutes  BUT if you’re answering questions quickly, don’t click Save repeatedly. Blackboard has an automatic save function that runs in the background during a test and clicking save repeatedly can interfere with the auto save process.

Allow time for the system to respond


(Look for the green progress bar at the bottom of the screen.) If the test presents one question at a time, your answers will be automatically saved as you go. You do not have to save each question.

Do not type essay questions in the test Always use Notepad or Wordpad, save the essay to your computer, and then copy and paste it into the Bb essay dialogue box.
Do not rely on your battery Be sure to plug in to an outlet.
DO NOT DOUBLE-CLICK Double-clicking either the Save Answer, Next Question, or Submit buttons may cause an error.
Do not use the browsers arrow buttons to go backwards or forwards

If the exam allows you to go back to a previous question, use the back or forward buttons provided in the test window.

Use of the back or forward button triggers the Blackboard autosave function.

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Last updated or reviewed on 8/18/14

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