Merging Multiple Bb Sections

Merging Multiple Bb Sections

A new course is created when sections are merged in PS. Students will be able to enroll in separate sections of your course, but only the new course will appear in Blackboard. Merging multiple sections of the same online course prevent the instructor from having to access several different Blackboard shells to upload materials, check course messages, etc.

Merging in PeopleSoft

Coordinators may consider combining multiple sections in PeopleSoft by increasing the class capacity of a single section. For example, PSY 223 has a cap of 32. An instructor teaching three PSY 223 sections could have one PeopleSoft section with 96 students. As a result, this would prevent the need to merge the three sections and the instructor will still carry a three-course load.   

Important reminders:

  1. You must be listed as the instructor in PeopleSoft. Also, instructor name changes are not automatic in Blackboard. Blackboard and PeopleSoft synchronize at 4:00 a.m. each morning. Therefore, the course will not appear on the instructor Blackboard course list until after 4:00 am the next day. For example, if your name is added to a section in PeopleSoft today, your name will not be attached to the course in Blackboard until tomorrow at 4:00 am. The instructor name needs to be attached to the course in PeopleSoft and Blackboard before merging. This process will take two days.
  2. Sections in escrow cannot be merged. The section must be open with an enrollment capacity.
  3. No instructor changes can be made after merging sections. Your schedule should be final before requesting merged sections.
  4. Technical problems can occur when merged sections are cancelled. For that reason, course merges will be processed after a healthy enrollment has been met. Contact your coordinator for the magic number. Typically, one section needs to be closed and at least 12 students enrolled in the other section. A reminder that sections may be rolled into other sections due to low enrollment. Take home point: request the merge after sections have adequate enrollment.
  5. Instructors can request a Blackboard development shell to begin working on a course. The course copy feature can be used to move the content to the new merged section after adequate enrollment has been achieved. Please send an email to or to request a development course shell. Please include the course (e.g. PSY 223) and your Username (e.g. jsmith0001).
  6. Are the Blackboard shells empty? If so, no problem. If not, content should be exported to your computer before requesting a merge and imported into the new merged course once it is created. Warning! Extremely Important! Content will disappear into Cyberspace after the merge. Consequently, export, export!
  7. Have students accessed the course? Sections that have been made available to students cannot be merged. The content and student work will be lost in Cyberspace after the merge. This has implications for reporting “no shows”. Even if instructors export the content and archive the student work, some students may enter the course and submit work after the archive (before the merge occurs). Take home point: sections need to be merged BEFORE the course is opened for business.

Please send an email containing the following information:

  • Term (e.g. 4146 or spring 2014)
  • Session (e.g. Regular Academic Session) Sections must be offered in the same session to be merged. The class dates must be identical. How do you locate the Session? Access PeopleSoft and click the course prefix and number in the Faculty Center for each section. Refer to Session under Class Details.
  • 4 Digit Class Number for each section to be merged.
  • Course Prefix, Number, and Section (e.g. PSY 223-19Z1)

Emails should be sent to:

Cynthia Ingle: Online sections only

  • Computer Science and Information Systems
  • Communications, History, Language, and Social Sciences
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics and Statistics
  • Natural Sciences

Marshall Robertson: Online sections only

  • Business

William Davis: All others