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TECHNOLOGY & SUPPORT

Support Services

Technical support is available at your fingertips. The OIT Service Desk is available to assist you with accessing Blackboard, antivirus software, email, and your OHIO ID and PID. If you have problems or questions, call the OIT Service Desk at 740.593.1222 or submit a request online at www.ohio.edu/oitech. Questions about Blackboard can be sent by email to bbsupport@ohio.edu. Please check www.ohio.edu/oit/help for current hours of service.

Technology Requirements

Learn about the technology you are required to use:

Activate Your OHIO ID

After you have been admitted, you will need to activate your OHIO ID, which is the key to most online services at Ohio University. Make sure you have your PID (Person Identification Number) ready when you activate your OHIO ID. Your PID can be found on your letter of admission.

Activate your OHIO ID

If you have any problems activating your OHIO ID, please contact the OIT Service Desk at 740.593.1222 or submit a request online at www.ohio.edu/oitech.

Blackboard 13

Online courses will be held in Blackboard. If your computer does not have the proper hardware, Blackboard may run slowly or may not run at all. Prior to using Blackboard on your computer, compare your current system configuration with the Blackboard system requirements.

Connection Speed
Once you have ensured that your computer has the proper operating system and hardware to run Blackboard, you should verify that your Internet connection is fast enough to support Blackboard. Online courses may require you to download/upload large files and often include streaming audio and video, both of which require faster connections.

Check your Internet connection download and upload speeds using the connection speed test at www.pcpitstop.com/internet/bw.asp. If your Internet connection is slower than the recommended speed, you may encounter difficulties when loading pages, especially during peak usage times.

Browser Compatibility
To see if your Web browser is compatible with Blackboard, click here. Blackboard requires that your Web browser conform to certain standards. If you have an out-of-date or unsupported browser, you will need to download either a certified version of your current browser or a different certified browser before attempting to log into Blackboard.

Browser Configuration
Your browser must be configured properly as follows:

  • JavaScript must be enabled.
  • Cookies must be enabled.
  • Pop-up windows must be enabled.

Browser Plug-ins
At a minimum, you will need three browser plug-ins to use Blackboard: Adobe Reader, Adobe Flash Player, and the Java Runtime Environment plug-in. You may need additional plug-ins if the course you are taking includes multimedia elements. To download the plug-ins you need, visit the Blackboard system requirements page.

Administrative access to the computer you are using is required, in case there is a need to install new or updated software. Since you will need to have the ability to install software on your computer, it is recommended that you do not rely on a computer at work or at a public library.

Firewall Setup
Many computers use a firewall to block harmful programs and data from their computers. The default settings of the Windows and Mac OS built-in firewalls will not interfere with Blackboard; however, if you have customized your firewall settings or installed a third party firewall, you may need to reconfigure those settings to allow Blackboard to operate properly.

For assistance making changes to your computer's firewall, contact the Office of Information Technology by email at bbsupport@ohio.edu or call 740.593.1222.

Getting Started with Blackboard

Access Your Online Course(s)

  • Locate the "My courses" box on the "My Ohio" page. Click the name of your course.
    • If you don't see your course, don't worry!
    • Some instructors make their courses unavailable while they are finalizing course content, but they will make it available when it is ready for student access or by the first day of the term.
    • Allow four hours from time of online registration before accessing.
    • If you still don't see the name of your course, contact 1.888.551.6446.
  • When your course appears, read the instructor's welcome message. Then explore!

How to Find Help

CatMail

The Ohio University student email system, called CatMail, will be available for use upon activation of your OHIO ID. Your CatMail email is your OHIO ID@ohio.edu.

Your OHIO ID and password are the key to numerous online services, including:

1. Class registration and schedules
2. Online billing statements and payment options
3. Grade reports
4. Free software downloads
5. Access to online classes

To keep in touch with professors and classmates, you need to use your Ohio University CatMail account. Please check your CatMail email regularly for official University correspondence. Many Ohio University departments and professors depend on CatMail for both announcements and assignments. We do not recommend forwarding your CatMail account, as you will likely not receive important email messages.

If you have problems accessing your email or have questions, call the Service Desk at 740.593.1222 or email servicedesk@ohio.edu.

Email Etiquette

When you write an email to your advisor/instructor:

  • Always include a clear subject at the top. This helps the person to know the email is not spam.
  • Include your full name and PID number at the end.
  • Reread your email before you send it—is it well-written (grammar, spelling, punctuation)? Is your purpose clear? Is your tone polite and respectful?
  • Do not use text abbreviations (use "you" instead of "u" and "are" instead of "r") or emoticons (smiley faces, etc.).
  • Never write in all caps (in email terms, it represents shouting).

Bobcat Depot

The Bobcat Depot is your one-stop shop for textbooks, computers and software, and apparel and gifts. As an OHIO student, you are eligible to purchase laptops and desktop computers, tablets, and software at discounted prices. For information about purchasing software, including Microsoft Office for Windows or Mac OS, visit www.ohio.edu/oit/techdepot/software.

The Bobcat Depot also offers repair services. For more information, visit http://bobcatdepot.ohio.edu, call 740.597.DEPO (3376), or email bobcatdepot@ohio.edu.