Blackboard Instant Messenger

Blackboard Instant Messenger (formerly known as Pronto) is a free instant messaging and voice chat tool that allows students and instructors to spontaneously meet live, online at any time to discuss their coursework. Blackboard Instant Messenger works with Blackboard Learn to automatically populate students' contact lists with their classmates' names, thereby making it easy for students, faculty and teaching staff to spontaneously collaborate live online. Blackboard Instant Messenger can also be used as a regular modern Instant Messenger, outside of Blackboard on Windows and Mac systems.

While Blackboard Instant Messenger offers many similar features as other instant messaging tools such as Windows Live Messenger, Skype, Google Hangouts, Yahoo, AIM and Jabber, Blackboard Instant Messenger is unique to education because it integrates seamlessly with Blackboard Learn, thereby automatically populating each student's contact list each semester with the names of every student in their classes (and Blackboard Learn committee/group sites). When one logins to Blackboard Instant Messenger, one instantly sees who's online from their classes and other Blackboard Learn sites (without even logging into Blackboard Learn). 


  • Ideal to complement faculty and teaching staff office hours.
  • Provides natural text and/or voice-chat capabilities inside and outside of Blackboard Learn.
  • For Blackboard Learn sites, Blackboard Instant Messenger automagically pre-populates everyone in the class :: no need to figure out what Instant Messenger software to use and what everyone's IM logins and handles are.  Blackboard Instant Messenger and Blackboard Learn know and take care of these details. You simply login and start chatting with your fellow students, instructors and other collaborators.
  • Blackboard IM is very easy to use, for both, one-on-one and group text and/or voice-chats (inc. text-chat archives)
  • Use the Blackboard Instant Messenger Contacts to save Blackboard Instant Messenger addressbook information for past and current students and instructors, for anyone at UIC, and for any other Blackboard Instant Messenger users in the world.

For More Information

See the Blackboard website for more information on Blackboard Instant Messenger.

Last updated: 

May 26, 2016