Control Panel

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The CONTROL PANEL contains all of the tools needed to manage a course. Only instructors have full access to the Control Panel. Teaching Assistant, Grader and Course Builder roles have some access to the control panel; students do not see this interface.

The control panel is located below the COURSE MENU, on the left-side of the course page. The control panel is a collapsible menu that lists several tool categories. Each tool category contains a sub-menu that specific tools associated with that item.

Tool sub-menus can be expanded or collapsed by clicking on the name of a tool category. A tool can be accessed by clicking on its name in a sub-menu. All Course administration is accessed through links in the Control Panel.

The Control Panel Tool Categories

The Control Panel expanded to display all tool categories. The following tool categories are available (see Table 1 for details):

  1. Content
  2. Course Tools
  3. Evaluation
  4. Grade Centre
  5. Users and Groups
  6. Customization
  7. Packages and Utilities
  8. Help

The Course Tools Sub-Menu

The Control Panel with the Course Tools category expanded to display the sub-menu. By default the following tools are available in Course Tools sub-menu:

  1. Announcements
  2. Blog
  3. Collaboration
  4. Contacts
  5. Course Calendar
  6. Course Portfolios
  7. Discussion Board
  8. Glossary
  9. Journals
  10. Rubrics
  11. Send Email
  12. Tasks
  13. Tests, Surveys and Pools
  14. UT Manage Users
  15. Wikis

Please Note: Some Course Tools must be activated before they appear in the Course Tools sub-menu (e.g., UT Opscan Upload). To activate a tool got to the Control Panel, click on Customization and then click Tool Availablity. On the Tool Availability page you can activate or deactivate tools. 

Table 1: Control Panel Tools and Functions

Control Panel Area



A new Content Area (folder) for the course. This folder is specific to each course. Copies of files uploaded from your personal computer to the course are automatically added to this area.

Note: Access to this folder and files stored here are no longer available when the course expires, roughly a year following the end of the course.

If you would like to copy course files and settings to a new course taught next term, perform a Course Copy (see Control Panel area called Packages and Utilities). If you would like to have access to these files after the course expires, transfer them to your personal folder in the Content Collection.

Course Tools

Contains all available Tools for the course. Communication tools such as Announcements and Send Email are included here, as well as links to Interactive Tools—Blogs, Wikis, Journals, and the Discussion Board. UT Manage Users and UT Manage Groups tools created at the University of Toronto are also listed here. 


Provides links to Course Reports, the Performance Dashboard, which are used to view information about Student activity and content usage, and Retention Center. Instructors can create rules using the Retention Center so they can be notified about student performance based on criteria created by the Instructor.

Grade Center

Provides links to the Needs Grading page, the Full Grade Center, default Smart Views of the Grade Center, and any Smart Views created by the Instructor. Smart Views appear in an indented list under Full Grade Center.

Users and Groups

NOTE: Unavailable to users. To create course groups, click UT Manage Groups under the heading Course Tools. See Blackboard Known Issues.


Change the properties of the course, such making the course available to students, and Language Pack; and change the appearance of the course. Additional tools can be made available (e.g., UT Opscan) by clicking Tool Availability.

Packages and Utilities

Check Course Links is available to check if links from files posted from the Content Collection to the course are active.  Course Copy can make an exact copy, or copy some the materials from an original course to a new course.  Export Course creates a package of course content that can later be imported into another course. Unlike Archive Course, Export Course does not include any user interactions; it only includes Content, Settings, and Tools, not student enrollments.  Archive Course creates a permanent record of a course including all the content and user interactions available at the time the Archive was created, including student enrollments. Only the instructor can create a course archive.


Offers support contacts to and online documentation developed by Blackboard.