Step 2: Required Technology


In today's digital age, having a solid foundation in technology is more important than ever before. As an online student, technology is not only a tool for communication and collaboration, but it is also an essential component of your learning experience. Whether it's accessing course materials, participating in online discussions, or submitting assignments, technology is at the forefront of this online program. Therefore, it is crucial that you have the necessary technology skills and equipment to succeed in your online courses. This step will explore the required technology for online students and the importance of developing good technology skills to help you achieve your academic goals.

Minimum Technology Proficiencies

You should be proficient in the following:

Computer Hardware & Software Guidelines

Video Conferencing

In addition to having a computer, a large number of classes will require student participation in live virtual class activities using technologies such as Zoom, or Engageli. 

The following recommendations will help you have a successful meeting:

Internet Connection

You will need stable access to high-speed Internet for your courses. Cable broadband in your own home is strongly recommended. Your Internet connection is critical in viewing the content on Blackboard and participating in live virtual sessions. 

Here are some places, in case your home network is interrupted, where you may find internet connectivity:

General Requirements

Internet Browser

Google Chrome is recommended for viewing all hybrid/online courses in Blackboard. However, the three major browsers (Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer/Edge if PC or Safari if Mac) should be installed as a backup for non Blackboard related content.

Download Chrome for free here.

Operating System


The following plug-ins are required for use with our online programs:

Adobe Reader

Apple Quicktime


Accessibility and Screen Readers

This is for information purposes, for any students who might desire to use a screen reader. Note that screen reader capability is  now built into both Mac  (Voiceover) and Windows (Narrator) systems. Informational links are below:

Information on Blackboard Learn Accessibility and Screen Readers 

Screen Readers Info from American Federation of the Blind


Per the campus IT anti-virus policy, we recommend installing the following software on Windows/Intel laptops:

Symantec Endpoint Protection antivirus (available at a discounted price from the UMB campus software office)


Not all functions work on all devices. We strongly advise against trying to complete the OMSW program on a mobile phone or tablet computer since there are functions in Blackboard that ONLY work properly on a laptop or desktop computer. If you try working on a mobile phone or tablet computer and something doesn't work, we suggest trying Chrome, Safari and the Blackboard app - and it if still doesn't work, your only option is to use a laptop or desktop computer. 

All students will need to use Duo multi-factor authentication to enter Blackboard. 

Please see this Introduction video from CITS about getting this set up and entering Blackboard:


Supported Browsers, Operating Systems, and Devices

How Do I Access My Blackboard

To access your courses, you will need to go to You will need a working UMID from CITS before you can log in.

NOTE: logins to Blackboard are managed by the UMB Directory ( There, you can establish, change or update your password.  Any time you need to address your Blackboard login or issues related to it, you should start with the directory, and if you have issues, contact CITS Helpdesk: 410-706-HELP. 

It is also most useful if your campus email address is set up before you log into Blackboard the first time.  

Can I Access Blackboard on a Mobile Device

Click these links to access Blackboard on your iOS, Android, Windows. You can also use Bb Student Mobile app.

PLEASE NOTE: not all functions work on all devices. We strongly advise against trying to complete the MSW program on a mobile phone, since there are functions in Blackboard that ONLY work properly on a laptop or desktop computer. If you try working on a mobile phone and something doesn't work, we suggest trying Chrome, Safari, and the Blackboard app - and it if still doesn't work, your only option is to use a laptop or desktop computer.

What is the Link The Blackboard link is also available on the main SSW website.

General Technology FAQ's

What USERID and Password do I Use

You will need to login into Blackboard using your UMID and password. These are managed in the campus directory system, by CITS

I Cannot Remember My USERID and Password

If you do not know your UMID, please go here.

I Lost My Phone and Cannot Access DUO

You can generate a bypass code to log into Blackboard from anywhere with an internet connection at 

After logging in, select Multi Factor Authentication (Duo) on the left, and the select the yellow "Generate Bypass Code"  button. 

You will be given an alphanumeric code.

When you are faced with DUO, you will then click to submit the bypass code you generated, so you do not need your cell phone. 


Please note that your instructors make the course available to you in Blackboard. Until they do, you will not see your course listed in Blackboard. 

Some instructors open courses early and some do not. If you do not see your course listed and are eager to, please email your instructor.  Neither the IDEA Team nor any other staff entity will make your course available before the semester begins. Only your instructor will do so.

Here is a UMB Directory where you can locate folks by last name:   Another tip, is that in Outlook, typically, when composing a message, if you start typing a last name, it will pull up suggested people from the directory, as well as typically offer up a directory where you can search for folks.

Course Navigation


NOTE: All incoming OMSW students are automatically enrolled in the OMSW SOWK 690 Incoming Student Prerequisites course. This course comprises of three modules. Please complete the Modules in order. You can return to this Prerequisite course at any time to refamiliarize yourself with Blackboard components.

If you log into Blackboard and search but cannot find or do not see SOWK 690 listed among your courses, please reach out to


If you see an Error message, you are probably not logged in. Log in first!