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Blackboard Adds Multimedia Content from NBC News to the Blackboard Learn Platform

Digital Content and Supplemental Resources Help Bring Courses to Life

WASHINGTON, Oct. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB), a global leader in education technology, announced today that a wealth of multimedia content from NBC News - covering decades of historic and current events - is now accessible to educators and students through the Blackboard Learn(TM) platform.

Through a partnership with NBC Learn, the educational arm of NBC News, thousands of K-12 and postsecondary institutions in North America now have access to NBC News Archives on Demand, enabling them to more effectively engage 21st century learners with digital content directly in their online courses.

With this unique resource, educators can easily search for instructionally relevant content about real world events - including audio, text and short-form video files - that can be embedded directly into courses on the Blackboard system to enrich the learning experience in a wide variety of subject areas.

As a result, educators can complement courses and lectures with historical and up to the minute video clips and other content on topics ranging from politics, the economy and climate change to health issues related to pandemic preparedness including the H1N1 influenza. Students get to participate in a much richer and more engaging course experience and can use the content and resources to support their own research, project work and presentations.

"I'm using the archives to help students place what they are learning in a real world context," said Mark Rains, an associate professor at the University of South Florida. "Very few of my hydrogeology students will go on to practice hydrogeology, but they will all live in a world in which the limited availability of water triggers a range of environmental and social implications. We read and hear about these problems in the media, but few really understand how to connect that news to the underlying principles of their academic work. I previously struggled to bring real time, real world content into the classroom and I'm hoping the NBC Learn Archives can help change that."

"We are excited to offer these exceptionally rich multimedia resources for the benefit of educators, students, and lifelong learners," said Ray Henderson, President of Blackboard Learn. "NBC's brand as a news authority combined with the superb production values of their footage will help educators craft richer and more contextually relevant courses for their students. Providing access to NBC News Archives on Demand is an important step in our strategy to assemble the world's best digital content for the Blackboard community."

In addition to regularly updated audio and video files of news events throughout history, NBC's digital content includes primary source documents, photos, articles, transcripts, analysis, and mini-documentaries that can be used to support instruction in a wide range of subject areas.

"By making the rich resources of NBC News available to educators and students, we are taking another step to bring the digital age and today's interactive media culture to the classroom," said Lisa Gersh, President of NBC News Strategic Initiatives. "It's often been said that journalists help write the first drafts of history. Now, through NBC News Archives on Demand, history can come alive in the classroom."

NBC News Archives on Demand is available as a free Blackboard Building Block(TM) from the Blackboard Extensions catalog. For more information about the Blackboard Content Network(TM), please visit For more information about Blackboard Learn, please visit

About Blackboard Inc.

Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB) is a global leader in enterprise technology and innovative solutions that improve the experience of millions of students and learners around the world every day. Blackboard's solutions allow thousands of higher education, K-12, professional, corporate, and government organizations to extend teaching and learning online, facilitate campus commerce and security, and communicate more effectively with their communities. Founded in 1997, Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

About NBC News

NBC News has been a leading source of global news and information for more than 75 years, first on radio, and today via broadcast and cable television, the Internet, radio and cell phones. Operating around the clock with bureaus in key cities in the United States and overseas, NBC News provides immediate coverage and in-depth reporting of major events to a worldwide audience.

Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Blackboard and other statements containing the words "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "will," and similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including the factors discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of our Form 10-Q filed on August 7, 2009 with the SEC. In addition, the forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Company's views as of October 8, 2009. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause the Company's views to change. However, while the Company may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the Company's views as of any date subsequent to October 8, 2009.

SOURCE Blackboard Inc.

Matthew Maurer of Blackboard Inc., +1-202-463-4860 ext. 2637,, or Lauren Skowronski of NBC Universal, +1-212-664-2432,