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The guidance in this section relates to live presentations or Vivas delivered via Blackboard Collaborate or Microsoft Teams. If you have been asked to create and submit a video or audio recording then please refer to the guidance on video assignments. For Vivas it is a UCL requirement that these are recorded. Other presentation assessments may also be recorded.

General Guidance

For any presentation it is good practice to reherse your session in advance. To do this you may wish to present to those in your household. As part of your preperations you may want to prepare a script or a series of prompts. This will help you keep on track during your presentation and ensure that you do not miss any key points.

If you intend to share slides you may want to set-up the slideshow so that only the slides are visible. If you are using Microsoft PowerPoint you may want to select the Set Up Show option Browsed by an individual (Window), this feature is available on both Windows and Mac. Unfortunately, Keynote does not have an equivalent feature so you may wish to hide notes and the navigation panel. LinkedIn Learning has courses on Keynote 9 and PowerPoint for both Windows and Mac.

Screenshot showing Set Up Show options.

Blackboard Collaborate

If you have been asked to present via Blackboard Collaborate your assessor will promote you from a Participant to a Presenter during the session. As a Presenter you will be able to upload, share, edit, and stop sharing content. For instance, you would be able to share your screen and show a presentation. You can also see hand raise notifications and can lower hands.

The following guidance will help you present effectively during a Blackboard Collaborate session.

Technical requirements

It is recommended that you have the following hardware and software available:

Share Content

During the session it is highly likely that you will want to sharesome content. The Share Content panel is the primary location from which you can control material within the session.

Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Share Content panel

This panel provides access to:

  • The Whiteboard, which can be shared as a blank space upon which all session participants can draw or write text.
  • Share Files, which can take the format of PowerPoint or OpenOffice files, images, or PDFs.
  • Share Application/Screen, which enables you to share an onscreen demonstration of a specific application or technique. Note that sharing your whole screen takes up significantly more bandwidth than a single application and the latter should be selected where possible.

On this panel it is also possible to:

  • Add a Poll with simple MCQ or Yes/No options.

Sharing Files

Files can be dragged and dropped to the Add Files area, or you can click the same box to locate the relevant file on your device. Once a file is uploaded you can share it to the Whiteboard for participants to view by clicking the 'Share Now' button. Note that presentation files are converted to images and you will not be able to present slide transitions or embedded media. There is a file size limit of 60MB. PDFs and presentations should be limited to 500 pages or slides.

Share Application / Screen

When choosing to share an application, that application needs to be open and active. If it is not, it will not appear in the drop-down list. Once you have made your selection, click on Allow. If you click on Do Not Allow you will not be able to share any applications or your screen. If you accidentally select this open, you will have to leave and rejoin the session.

Window or Screen to share selection pop-up windowWindow or Screen to share op-up window, Allow or Don't Allow permissions

To stop sharing a window or screen, click on the stop button that will appear in the top-right corner of the main session window or on the Share Content panel.

Screenshot of Blackboard Collaborate Ultra showing position of butoons for halting sharing of a window or screen.

Adding a Poll

There are two options for Polls, Multiple Choice and Yes/No Choices. Polls can only be created during the session, they cannot be created in advance. If you choose to use polls, tt is recommended that you have the questions and answers prepared in advance. These can then be copy and pasted into the relevant boxes during a session.

BB Collaborate Ultra Polling Options BB Collaborate Ultra Multiple choice poll creation panel

For Multiple Choice polls you can add additional answer options by clicking on Add choice. Once you have created your Polling question, click on Start to start the poll. This appears at the bottom of the Multiple Choice or Yes/No Choice panel.

BB Collaborate Ultra Multiple poll creation panel - poll Start and Cancel options

Whilst running the poll you have options to view and hide the poll. This can be done by clicking on the Chart icon (square). You can also lock/unlock the poll - allowing or disallowing participants to answer (oval). The poll can be stopped by clicking on the Stop button (hexagon).

BB Collaborate Ultra poll controls

Managing participants and the Interaction Menu

The Interaction Menu appears at the bottom of the main window. They enable you to share and mute your video and audio. You are also able to raise your hand, and view how many participants have raised their hands. If your audio or video are not active a line will appear through the icons. If they are active, the line will disappear and the icon will appear green.

BB Collaborate Ultra Interaction Menu

To facilitate questions and answers during the session you may ask participants to raise their hands. A number badge on this button indicates the number of session participants who have raised their hands.

If a participant raises their hand you can invite them to speak. For them to speak Share Audio needs to be enabled in the Session Settings, this can only be done by a Moderator.

Lower Hand

You can cancel a hand raise, lower hand, in the Attendee Panel. Select the 3 dots next to the name of the participant whose had raise you wish to cancel. From the menu that appears select Lower Hand.

BB Collaborate Ultra - Lower Hand of participant

Microsoft Teams

If you have been asked to present or informed that your Viva will be conducted via a Microsoft Teams meeting. It is likely that you will have been added to a Microsoft Teams team for the purposes of the assessment. Teams can be accessed via Office365.

Office365 Apps menu 

You will receive an email invitation that includes a link, by clicking on the link you will be able to join the meeting. All participants in a Microsoft Teams Meeting have the same privileges.

Screenshot showing Join Microsoft Teams Meeting email include

For more information see the Microsoft Office 365 guidance: Join a Teams meeting.

Using Teams

ISD has produced this video which explains a number of tools available for remote working. This includes Microsoft Office365 tools such as email, calendar, OneDrive and Teams and use of the virtual private network (VPN) and Desktop@UCL Anywhere for accessing central systems and software. This video has captions.

Sharing your screen or presentation

During the meeting it is likely that you will be required to share your screen or a presentation. This can be done via the Microsoft Teams meeting controls via Share Share screen button .

View the Microsoft Office365 guidance:


It is possible to enable live captions during a Microsoft Teams meeting. However, they are only available to those using the Desktop App version of Microsoft Teams and captions are only available in English US at present.

The automatic captions need to be enabled at an individual user level during the Teams meeting and are not saved, they are not available in a recording of the meeting.

Screenshot of MS Teams meeting menu

To turn on the automatic captioning whilst is a MS Teams meeting, click on the three dots in the meeting control panel.

Select Turn on Live Captions (preview, English US only). Live captions should now appear.

To turn off the live captions, click on the three dots and select Turn off Live Captions.

More information

For more information on how to use MS Teams see the LinkedIn learning course Microsoft Teams Essential Training.

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