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Current Version: Blackboard 9.1 (October 2014 Update/Version)

Blackboard is one of two learning management system used by the entire Virginia Community College System.   This online program is used by instructors at Southside Virginia Community College to share instructional materials, collect assignments, administer exams, post notices, etc.   Our online courses and hybrid courses utilize this program, but all instructors are expected to use the Blackboard site to display an electronic copy of the syllabus, instructor contact information, copies of supplementary materials and grades.  Instructors for all classes are to make the Blackboard course areas available to students by 8:00 AM the day that the session begins, and links to those courses areas will display for students in Blackboard in the My Blackboard Courses module on the SVCC tab once this access has been given.  Though you should see Blackboard sites for all your courses, if you do not, please ask the instructor if the course has been made available.


Canvas is the second learning management system used by the Virginia Community College System, and will become the only LMS effective Summer 2019. As with Blackboard, this system is designed to allow Southside instructors to share instructional materials, collect assignment, administer exams, post notices, etc. While Canvas is used more intensely for online and hybrid courses, seated courses are required to use the Canvas course shell to post an electronic copy of the syllabus, their contact information, copies of supplementary material and grades for online access. Courses will be made available to students by 8:00 AM on the first day of the session.

For Spring 2019 only, students will access their courses in Canvas by logging in to Blackboard via the MySVCC link on the Southside website, then selecting the course name from their Blackboard "My Courses" list. A link to the Canvas site for that course will be shown, and students can click there to go directly to the Canvas course. Students can also access their courses by going directly to and using their Blackboard credentials to log in.

Beginning Summer 2019, all courses will be in the Canvas LMS only, and a Canvas icon will replace the Blackboard icon on the MySVCC page.

Your Computer and Blackboard/Canvas

Blackboard works with both PC and Mac computers, but you should know that Blackboard does not work well with browsers other than Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. Both are free downloads, so can be utilized by all Southside students, faculty and staff. Please be sure that and that you have all necessary plug-ins and software installed before your course begins.  There is a link in the menu above for technical requirements.  

Canvas works on all computers; unlike Blackboard, it also works well from mobile devices if you use the Canvas Student App. You can download the app free of charge on any iOS or Android device, just seach for "Canvas Student". When using a laptop or desktop, Canvas works very well with most browsers, though Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome are the preferred browsers, simply because of other programs sometimes used within Canvas. As Canvas is cloud based, technical requirements differ from Blackboard, but can be found on the adjoining pages linked above. 

New Online Learning at SVCC

If you are new to online learning and/or the use of Blackboard, we encourage you to go to the "Getting Started" area linked in the menu above or go through the "Getting Started with Blackboard" area in your course site.  These areas walk you through what you need to do to make sure that you are on the correct road towards success in the online learning environment at Southside Virginia Community College.

Within the Canvas LMS, there is a "Using Canvas" button on the course home page. This will take you to a list of resources to help you learn the important aspects of the Canvas Learning Management System. Also, be sure to note the "Help" icon on the bottom left of your Canvas screen ... SVCC students have access to 24/7 support via a phone hotline and via online chat. Do not hesitate to reach out if your question is Canvas related. A button to ask your instructor a question is also included in the help menu, and should be used to ask any course specific questions.

Accessing Blackboard and Canvas
  • Go to the college website and click the MySVCC link on the left side and log-in to your MySVCC page. There is a link to Blackboard from that page.
  • Go directly to MySVCC bypassing the college site, log-in, click on the Blackboard link.
  • Go directly to Blackboard bypassing the MySVCC page and log-in.
  • To access Canvas (spring 2019), follow the steps above to access Blackboard, then click on the link provided on the first page of your Blackboard course to go to the Canvas site.
  • Go directly to Canvas.
User Names and Passwords

When you access Blackboard, you generally do so through your MySVCC page. Even if you go directly to Blackboard, the user name and password is the same as what you utilize to access MySVCC.  

MySVCC User Name and Password Information  

Additional Resources

Go to the Technical and Instructional Support page linked in the top menu.