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Blackboard’s Open Innovation Initiative Now Supported via Amazon Web Services AMI


At BbWorld 2017, Blackboard announced the Open Innovation Initiative. This program provides a way for developers using the IMS Global Learning Tools Interoperability® (LTI®) standard and Representational State Transfer (REST) developers to collaborate with Blackboard and develop integrations and extensions to Blackboard products without the cost-barrier of a formal Blackboard Partnership. Developers participating in the Open Innovation Initiative receive:

  • Access to documentation and development tools
  • Open access to REST API documentation in the Blackboard Development Portal
  • Support via our Blackboard Community site
  • Support for a dedicated development, testing and demo environment

To further allow developers to take advantage of our open platform, we are pleased to announce that the Open Innovation Initiative now provides access to a developer’s version of Blackboard Learn SaaS via an Amazon Machine Image (AMI) through Amazon Web Services, Inc.’s  (AWS) Marketplace. The Blackboard Learn AMI makes it possible for an AWS Marketplace account owner to publicly access Blackboard Learn SaaS once they have accepted the Open Innovation Initiative Developer Agreement through the AWS Marketplace. We are very excited to offer this opportunity to our developer community as a way to expand access and encourage innovation, and the AWS Marketplace platform is the perfect vehicle for providing ease of access and flexible use.

The Blackboard Learn AMI allows anyone to develop, test, demo, and launch REST and LTI integrations with either the Original or Ultra experiences of Learn before deciding to join our Blackboard Member Partnership program. By leveraging the Blackboard Learn AMI, developers will have access to Blackboard’s latest Learn SaaS production releases.

Blackboard’s decision to use the AWS Marketplace to support the Open Innovation Initiative was a natural extension of the relationship between Blackboard and AWS; that relationship is transforming Blackboard’s approach to software development and delivery.

Hosting more than 4,200 software listings from than 1,280 software sellers across 35 catgories, Andrew Ko, director of global education at Amazon Web Services, Inc., believes that “The AWS Marketplace is one of the cloud industry’s most utilized one-stop-shop to find, buy, deploy, and manage software solutions, including SaaS applications, for AWS” and “AWS is excited to support Blackboard’s AWS Marketplace deployment to drive further innovation and ease of deployment for Blackboard’s customers and Blackboard Partners.”

Under the Open Innovation Initiative, Blackboard limits entry production-level rates and the number of production deployments. Working with the Blackboard Learn AMI enables developers to prepare for additional potential Blackboard Partnership opportunities. Once a developer makes his or her integration or extension available, Blackboard will offer the opportunity for partnering with the company in a more strategic and robust way via the Blackboard Member Partnership program.

To access the Blackboard Learn AMI, visit the AWS Marketplace and search for “Blackboard” in the AMI & SaaS search bar at the top of the marketplace page.

To learn more about the Blackboard Learn AMI, visit our Developer Community site. To learn more about how you can extend and enhance the learning experience with Blackboard, visit our curated Extensions Catalog today.