Skip to end of metadata
Go to start of metadata


With the implementation of the Integration Framework, UMassOnline will continue to support this command line method, but strongly encourages campuses to develop and implement the new Framework as no further additional development will be done by either Blackboard or UMassOnline for the command line system.

Please Note

  • This information should be used as a general guide for your planning purposes and is likely to change and get updated as we roll out Bb Learn 9.1. To be sure you are updated as these changes and additions occur be sure you "watch" this page.
  • Bb Learn introduces some cross campus unique data considerations. Details of this can be found here Uniqueness of Data

All files should be posted campus specific SFTP accounts. SFTP Hosting

Each campus has their own accounts assigned. If usernames and passwords are needed please contact UMassOnline. 


One file will be created for each type of import record - Courses, Organizations, Users, Course Enrollments and Organization Enrollments.

Information on the naming conventions that should be used when generating these files can be found on this page. Batch File Naming Conventions

The first record in each file will be a header record, specifying which columns are included in a given CSV file. The headers should be taken from the ‘CSV Header’ entry in the following format descriptions.

A summary of CSV formatting:

  • Fields are separated with commas.
  • Fields may always be delimited with double quotes.
  • Fields with leading or trailing spaces must be delimited with double-quote characters.
  • Fields with embedded commas must be surrounded with double-quote characters.
  • Fields that contain double quote characters must be surrounded by double-quotes, and the embedded double-quotes must each be represented by a pair of consecutive double quotes.
  • Leading and trailing space-characters adjacent to comma field separators are ignored.

If any questions exist as to what constitutes a valid CSV file, please contact UMass Online Support by opening a support ticket.

Bb Learn courses can be created or updated by uploading a file formatted with the fields described below. Each record in the file represents a single course. The record format is the same for creating or updating.

All Learning Contexts must have a unique ID. No two courses may duplicate an ID.

A trailing comma in the last column field is not necessary.

CSV Record Types

Header Row

The Header Row in a Feed File contains Field Names, which are the exact names of the fields included in the file. These names are listed in the tables ->HERE<-. The header fields are delimited with the same character as the data records.

Fields can appear in the header row in any order, but fields not recognized by Blackboard Learn cannot be included or errors will occur or the operation will fail completely.

Note feed files work in both Right to Left and Left to Right operating system environments. The order of the fields in the header row is not important, only that it matches the order of the data rows. The delimiter for Snapshot feed files used in a Right to Left environment must be a Tab or Comma. (If you choose to use Tab seperated flat files please let UMassOnline know so they can configure Learn accordingly.)

Each Feed File type has a minimum number of required fields that need to be identified in the header row.

Specifics on each file type and format can be found on the following pages.

Invalid data

Incorrectly formatted data is handled as follows:

  • Strings that exceed the specified max length for that column will be truncated. Data Source Keys that exceed the specified max length for that column will cause the record to fail.
  • Data types that cannot be converted (such as dates) are ignored. (They are treated as a space or as missing.)
  • Invalid column headers are ignored.

Note Unsupported feed elements will not cause the feed to fail---they are ignored to preserve backward compatibility with older feed generators.

  • No labels