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Why use audio?

Audio is great for when you want to have conversations with your students. Audio helps you transfer your passion through tone and inflection. And if your students also share their audio, you can get get a sense of how they are doing through their expression.

Tip: If you use audio, you might also consider using video in your session.

What if my students don’t want to turn on their audio? That’s ok. Not everyone is comfortable turning on their audio right away. Audio is just one way to talk with your students. You can also engage with your students with chat, polls, feedback, and so on.

Let’s get started and turn your audio on

Turn your audio on

After you set up your audio and video, turn on both your camera and microphone to been seen and heard.

Tip: Moderators can mute attendees anytime during the session. You are notified, if a moderator has muted you. A good practice is to turn off your microphone when you’re not speaking. Learn more tips in Session Best Practices.

Use the microphone and camera icons along the bottom of the main stage or content presentation area. With your keyboard, press Alt + M to turn your microphone on and off. Press Alt + C to turn your camera on and off.

The microphone is active after you turn it on.

Audio set up

You must give your browser permission to use your microphone and camera to use them in a session.

Note: Some browsers need access to your microphone to play audio, even if you don’t plan to speak. To hear others in the session, give the browser permission to access the microphone.

You are asked to do this when you first join a session or when you first turn on your audio. Follow these steps to run the audio and video set up any time:

  1. Open My Settings. Select your profile pictures and select your name. Or open the Collaborate panel and select My Settings.
  2. Select Set Up your Camera and Microphone.
  3. Choose the microphone you want to use. Collaborate tells you that you sound great when it is receiving your audio. Select Yes, it’s working to proceed.
  4. Choose the camera you want to use. Collaborate tells you that you look great when it is receiving your video. Select Yes, it’s working to proceed. Your video will appear backwards to you. This is normal.

By default, you are muted after you complete the setup. Turn your audio on when you are ready.

Having trouble setting up your audio and video with JAWS and VoiceOver? Jump to Troubleshooting and find the support page for your browser.

Mute attendees

Moderators can mute individual attendees or everyone in a session. This includes attendees using the Blackboard app or the Blackboard Instructor app.

  • Mute individual attendees: Point to an attendee with their audio on. Select Attendee Controls and select Mute
  • Mute all attendees: Select More options at the top of the Attendees panel. Select Mute All.

Muted attendees see a notification telling them that the moderator has muted their microphone.

Note: Attendees can turn their microphone back on after being muted.

Audio and video issues

If you are having issues with your audio or video, please check your session and browser settings.

  • Are the audio or video controls on? A line through the icons means that a device is not enabled.
  • Are you using the latest version of your browser? Update your browser.
  • Does the browser have permission to access your camera and microphone?

More on troubleshooting audio and video issues for your browser of choice

Dynamic adjustments

Collaborate dynamically adjusts to sending and receiving connection bandwidth changes in the quality of your internet connection. As your connection improves or degrades, the bandwidth use for video is adjusted up and down.

Some situations may require additional adjustment. Collaborate adds explicit experience changes to accommodate a wider range of connectivity blips.

When the experience changes, you are notified and told why.

More on Network Connection


I can’t hear anything. Can I change the volume?

Adjust your microphone and speaker volume in My Settings. Point to your avatar image to open My Settings. Select Audio and Video Settings.

I can’t find my audio button. How do I turn my audio on?

The moderator may have turned off your audio in their session. Moderators can turn off audio, video, chat, and edit tools in their sessions.