Blackboard Faculty Manual - The Assignment Feature

The “Assignment” feature

In addition to the Digital Drop Box, Blackboard provides an “Assignment” feature which allows greater interactivity (file exchange and feedback) between the instructor and a single student and can automatically link the grade to the appropriate item in the grade book. This makes it easy to keep track of files submitted by students in relation to the associated assignment.

The Assignment feature differs a bit from the digital drop box which is a separate function within Bb. Using the Bb Assignment feature will eliminate emailed files getting “lost in cyberspace”, additionally, all information will be located in one place.

Setting up the Assignment feature

  • Go to the Control Panel
  • Click into the menu item in the Content Area in which you want to hold the assignment exchange; for example, you might want it in a menu item you created for “Assignments” or you might want it in an "Assignment" folder that you create and made available under "Course Documents".
  • Select “Assignment” from the drop-down list on the top right of the screen.


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  • Click “Go”.
  • Complete the “Add Assignment” page (including the point value; attach the file which contains the assignment if you are initiating the file exchange with students).
  • Provide clear and concise directions for students.  Bb will automatically create a button that reads "View/Complete," but this might be confusing for students without explanation about how to proceed. (See below for an example of instructions to students.)
  • Click Submit. (The assignment will now appear in the content area you selected.)

Viewing submitted Assignments

  • Go into the grade book via the Control Panel.
  • Click on the exclamation point in the grade column for the item. (The exclamation point indicates that something needs graded, in this case the assignment submitted by the student.)
  • Click on “view”” on the next screen.
    • Download the file that the student submitted.
    • Review file.
    • Add comments/feedback for the student within the document if you want.

 

Returning Assignments to students

Assisting students know how to use the Assignment feature

  • Make sure students understand that an assignment either begins with: 
    • a file that you, as the instructor, post and that they will need to reply within the file (for example, a worksheet), OR
    • a file that the student creates from your instructions.

 

Below are sample instructions to students about use of the Assignment feature. (These are adapted from Lynne Smith’s set of instructors to her courses here at Carroll.)



All assignments may be found in ASSIGNMENTS


Do not send any assignment to me via email. Instead, you will post your assignment directly on Blackboard. The computer will keep track of when the assignment is posted, and you will be able to see that it is correctly located there. Only you and I (the instructor) will be able to access your assignment.
 

To access the assignments:

  • Click on the ASSIGNMENTS button in the course menu
  • Locate the assignment you want to see
  • Click on “View/Complete Assignment”
  • Review the assignment instructions
  • Click on “Assignment Files” if you see a file listed
  • Do not open the file, but
  • Save the assignment file to your computer or any other portable drive (disk, memory stick, CD).

 

To complete the assignment:

  • Complete the assignment on the file provided by your instructor which you have now saved somewhere on your computer outside of Blackboard
  • Save the file with your completed assignment.

 

To send your assignment to your instructor:

Remember, all assignments must be in Microsoft Word, Excel or PowerPoint format (.doc, .xls, .ppt). Other formats such as Microsoft Works, LotusWorks, Corel, Apple, Mac, etc are not acceptable and will be returned. If you cannot convert your file to the accepted formats, it is suggested that you do your assignments at Carroll Community College since all of our computers have the accepted software.  [These are Lynne’s requirements. You might have different ones, but be explicit in what you will accept.]

  • Click on the ASSIGNMENTS button in the course menu
  • Locate the assignment that you now want to send back your responses to the instructor.
  • Click on “View/Complete Assignment”
  • Click the “Browse” button in the “Assignment Materials” your files” section
  • Locate the file on your computer (disk, memory stick, or CD) that contains your completed assignment.
    • Click “Save” to save your work.
      • The “Save” button does not submit your work to the instructor for grading, but it does shows that the student is “in process” with the assignment.
      • If the assignment requires you to attach more than one file, you may click on the “Add Another File” button and repeat the browse functions like you did to upload the first file.
    • Ready to turn in your assignment for grading?
      • Put your name in the comments field along with any other comments you would like to pass on to the instructor (Blackboard will require you to put something in the comments field)
      • Click the Submit button. You will get a message that says that your assignment has been successfully updated.

 

To make sure that the assignment was posted successfully:

  • Click on the ASSIGNMENTS button in the course menu
  • Locate the assignment you want to check on
  • Click on “View/Complete Assignment”
  • Click on your file link which will now be listed in the “Assignment Materials” section as “Currently Attached Files”. If you can’t read the file, neither can the instructor.
  • If you post your assignment in error, or wish to make changes and re-post it before the due date, you must contact the Instructor to have the assignment deleted so that you can resubmit it.

 

To access your grade and any comments posted by the instructor:

You have two options to view your assignment:

  1. To view the assignment from the ASSIGNMENTS link go into the assignment and look at the “Feedback from Instructor” section. Your grade will be reflected there as well as any comments. Additionally, your assignment, with my comments on it, will be attached under “Files from Instructor”. Clicking on this link will bring up your assignment with my comments in another color.
  2. To view the assignment from the GRADEBOOK, click on STUDENT TOOLS and then click on VIEW GRADES. Click on the grade listed under the assignment and the same information as detailed in the ASSIGNMENTS link will be available to you.

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