A New Term

If you are trying to remember how to get going at the start of term, read on…


The easiest way to access Blackboard is via vle.aston.ac.uk. Log in using your Aston username and password. You can also find links to Blackboard in MAP, and on the staff intranet.

Welcome page

The courses you are enrolled on are listed on the right-hand side, under the My Courses heading. If you are missing modules from this list, please contact the relevant Programme Support Team for your School.

Prepare your course

Reading lists

In your new course, there will be a link to the reading list for the current academic year. In many cases, last year’s list would have been duplicated for you. If your previous reading list contained any specifically cleared copyright material please contact your Information Specialist.

Course Copy

Blackboard Courses, are created in 1 of 2 ways.

If a module ran during the previous academic year (and keeps the same module code) the course will be created completely empty. This reduces tutor workload by greatly simplifying the course copying process:

    • No unnecessary items are introduced into the course area by the template, that will need to be removed.
    • The structure and hierarchy of the source course will be preserved exactly, requiring no additional editing and correction. 
Please note that these benefits will only be realised if you select the correct options when performing the course copy. Please pay special attention to the “Making a duplicate of a course” section of the Course Copy instructions for guidance. 

If the module is new or has a new module code the course will be created with the standard template.

If you believe that your course has been created incorrectly, either:

  • created empty but you do not have a populated course to copy into it, OR
  • created with the template but you have a populated course you wish to duplicate,

Please get in touch with the TEL Team and we will work with you to resolve the situation.

Tidy up

Once you’ve completed the course copy, you’ll need to tidy up. Delete any unwanted content areas you don’t need (eg ones that were created as part of the template or that you brought over by mistake).

Date management

Depending upon what type of content you have copied from your old course you may need to adjust the dates relating to content such as adaptive release. You can do this in bulk using the Date Management tool.

View your course as a student

Use the Student Preview feature to see your course as a student. This will create a temporary student user and log you in as them.

Make the course available to students

By default, new courses are unavailable to students. They must be made available by the start of term, please see Making a Course Available or Unavailable if you do not know how to do this.