Ally: Student Frequently Asked Questions

This service is for students.
  • Ally by Blackboard creates alternative files that are easier to use by all students. Ally by Blackboard works within your online course so it's available right where you need it.
  • Alternative files include readable text for screen readers, pictures with captions, and easy-to-navigate content. Ally by Blackboard creates multiple alternatives from the original documents in your course. You can download these alternative formats anywhere that files are used.

How do I download alternative formats?

Easy as 1-2-3. Your instructor probably has many different files uploaded in your course. Ally creates alternative formats for those files. You can download the alternative formats anywhere that files are used. Just choose the version that is best for your needs.

  1. Find a File: Log into your course and find the file you want.
  2. Open the file menu: Select the menu beside the file and select Alternative formats.

  3. Choose a format Don’t stick to just one format! Use as many formats as you want. Need help choosing? More on alternative formats


What alternative formats does Ally generate?

Ally provides alternative formats for these file types:

  • PDF files
  • Microsoft® Word files
  • Microsoft® Powerpoint® files
  • OpenOffice/LibreOffice files
  • Uploaded HTML files

These alternative formats can be generated:

  • OCR’d version (for scanned documents)
  • Tagged PDF (currently for Word, Powerpoint and OpenOffice/LibreOffice files)
  • Mobile-friendly HTML
  • Audio
  • ePub
  • Electronic Braille
  • BeeLine Reader
  • Translated Version
    • Translated Version is disabled by default. Administrators can submit a support case to have it enabled.

Learn more on alternative formats

Are alternate formats generated when a request to download is made?

  • When a particular alternative format for a particular content item is requested for the first time, Ally generates this on demand. In most cases, this completes within 1-2 minutes.
  • As soon as it has been generated, the alternative format is downloaded. Ally then also caches the result, so any additional requests for the same alternative format can be served and downloaded from cache immediately.

Does Ally generate alternative formats for student content?

Ally currently only processes instructional content. For example, content added by someone with edit permissions in the course, such as the instructor or instructional designer. Ally currently does not process student content or student submissions.

Which Braille code does Ally use for the Electronic Braille Format?

Can the Ally Electronic Braille Format be printed using a Braille printer?

Why do I see "The alternative formats for this file have been disabled"?

Instructor and administrators can turn off alternative formats for an individual content item within a course. For example, on a file uploaded to the course.

To report a problem or receive additional troubleshooting, please contact the Tech Desk
Request Service


Article ID: 113800
Thu 8/13/20 2:28 PM
Sat 11/4/23 9:34 AM

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