Blackboard steps toward sociability

Since the beginning of the Winter semester, MCCC’s Blackboard website has allowed students to put a profile picture on their account. 
For some students, this upgrade is a good tool. For others, it seems like Blackboard is trying to be like every other social media platform.
MCCC student Andrew Barnes said he sees some value to the new policy.
“I don’t know everybody in my class, so if I could see a picture, it would benefit me at some point,” Barnes said. “But normally, I wouldn’t use it.”
Student Abraham Styles said he thinks the change should be targeted at younger students.
“I think the profile picture setting could be a good thing for the younger crowd, like the middle college students, but I don’t think it would be necessary for older college students like me,” he said. 
Katie Lutz said the only time she gets on Blackboard is for school, not for socializing,
“I don’t think I would use the new setting. I only really get on for homework,” Lutz said. “I just use Facebook when I need to talk to people.” 
Jeff Peters, MCCC’s coordinator of E-learning and Instructional Support, manages the Blackboard system.
“We wanted it to be like a Facebook page, where students could put a picture of themselves up so that they could customize their profile,” he said.
Peters said the profile picture benefits not only students, but teachers as well.
“It adds some degree of personality, so it benefits students who take online classes to know what their teacher looks like, and it also benefits the teacher to know who the student is,” he said.