University of Houston-Victoria


Building Block/LTI Integration Requests

We cannot integrate anything in Blackboard until it has completed the UH Main Campus technology assessment process. FERPA compliance is a priority with all Blackboard integration requests. The technology assessment team has representatives from IT Security, Purchasing, Registrar's office, Legal, etc. to make sure any data shared as part of the Blackboard integration is secure and doesn't threaten the university's compliance. Any contracts may be required to include our specific rider(s) about data privacy and use, etc.

Building Blocks are third-party applications (software programs written and developed by other companies than Blackboard and UHV) that need to be installed on the Linux servers that run the Blackboard Learn 9.1 LMS system. Installation of a third-party Building Block requires developers and programmers at the UH Main Campus to take the Blackboard Learn 9.1 LMS system offline, install the application (software program), configure system and application settings, and bring the LMS system online again. This process can take several hours to a day or longer (depending on the integration) to complete. Building Blocks and LTI integrations can only be completed by developers and programmers at the UH Main Campus. Blackboard system administrators at the UHV campus cannot install Building Blocks or LTI integrations. 

Since there is substantial overhead and resources associated with the installation and configuration of third-party Building Blocks (including maintaining and upgrading the Building Block software when a new release is made available by the third party), all requests from UHV faculty, adjuncts, staff, departments, and colleges for Building Blocks and LTI integrations must be approved by the UH Main Campus and UH IT Security. UH IT Security will confirm that the third-party Building Block doesn't pose a risk or compromise student data, including protected FERPA data. The approval process is lengthy as the application/request is reviewed by more than one department at the UH Main Campus and all Building Block and LTI integrations must first be tested on the quality assurance (QA) version of the Blackboard LMS system before they are made available on the production version of the Blackboard LMS system. 

The third-party LTI integrations usually do not require a software program to be installed; however, they also require the same approval from the UH Main Campus and UH IT Security group as the third-party Building Blocks. 

Additional information about requesting third-party Building Blocks and LTI integrations is made available on the UH Main Campus website