Inline Grading for Assignments



You can view, comment, and grade student-submitted assignment files without leaving the Grade Assignment page. When you view a document submitted to an assignment, that document is converted to a format that is viewable inside the web browser. Supported document types that can be converted are Word (DOC, DOCX), PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX), Excel (XLS, XLSX), and PDF (PDF). The new Box View allows you to view other types of files in the inline viewer, such as image files. The converted document is displayed in a viewer on the Grade Assignment page. Formatting and embedded images of the original document are preserved in the conversion. If a student has uploaded a file that isn’t in a format supported by the inline viewer, then instead of seeing the viewer, you are prompted to download the file.

Student submissions made by using the Write Submission button and typing a response directly into the provided text box are not compatible with inline grading. Submissions of this type appear for review on the Grade Assignment page, but annotation is not available. Submissions uploaded via the Browse My Computer or Browse Content Collection buttons are compatible with inline grading, provided they are one of the document types noted above.

Image of Assignment Submission page


For more information about grading assignments in Blackboard, see Using the Assignment Tool.

Information for students about how to view their assignment grades and feedback is available at the Student Knowledge Base.


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Watch a Video (1:30)

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Inline Annotations

Files that have been uploaded and converted for display in the inline viewer can be annotated directly within the browser. Please note that students will not see any of your comments, feedback or annotations until you submit a grade for the assignment.

Inline Grading Interface

Example using Inline Grading

  1. View instructions. Expand the assignment instructions.
  2. Add comments, highlight text, and draw on the document.
    • Comments: Select the Point annotation mode icon and point to wherever you want to add a comment. Select Post. You can continue to add comments in succession.
    • Highlight text: Point and drag your cursor to highlight text, then select Highlight text. Select Add comment to highlighted text to add a comment to a highlighted area. To remove a highlighted area, select Highlight text again.
    • Draw: Select the Drawing annotation mode icon. Then, press down and drag the pointer to draw on the document. Save or Delete your drawing. You can continue to add drawings in succession and save or delete all drawings in one action. You can’t edit or delete drawings after you save them.
  3. Remove or reply to comments. Open a comment again and select the Delete icon in the right corner to remove it. You can also reply and add additional information.
  4. Access additional actions. Point to the bottom of the screen to access functions. You can zoom in and out, and navigate to other pages in a student’s file.
  5. Provide a grade and feedback. In the right panel, grade the submission, provide feedback, attach files, and add private notes for yourself. If you associated a rubric, you can access it in this area. Select the Click to open full content editor icon to access the editor. You can also override or revert a grade. Students can access the annotated files after you provide a grade and select Submit.
  6. Download the student’s file. After you select Submit, a PDF file with your annotations is generated. The time to create the PDF depends primarily on the size of the original file. If you choose to download the Annotated PDF, your comments will appear on the last page of the downloaded document.


Inline Grading Sidebar

From the Inline grading sidebar you can:

  1. Expand assignment details to show the information such as the class average score and name of the assignment.
  2. Type a score or grade for the attempt.
  3. If multiple attempts were permitted for the assignment, you may select the student’s previous attempts from a drop-down list. Click the attempt to load the submission in the inline viewer and update the sidebar with the appropriate attempt-related data.

Inline Grading Options

Click the bar with the small downward-facing chevron to expand more options:

  1. View the grading rubric associated with the assignment.
  2. Type feedback the student can see. Files can be attached to the feedback, and the Feedback field can be expanded to take advantage of the full Content Editor capabilities.
  3. Show grading notes displays where you can add private notes, not visible to the student as feedback.
  4. Download the originally submitted file. If more than one file was submitted for the attempt, all files are available here.

Inline Grading Options

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Record Audio or Video Feedback on an Assignment

You can embed audio/video recordings with your feedback as you grade attempts. Students watch or listen to your feedback alongside any text you include.

  1. In the Feedback to Learner area, click the icon of the capitol letter A to open the full content editor.
  2. Select the microphone icon in the last row of the editor.
  3. You need to give the browser permission to use audio and video the first time you open the recording window. This process will differ depending on the browser you are using.
  4. In the window that opens, select the camera icon on the recording interface to enable your camera. Without the camera enabled, the tool only records audio when you begin. When you’re ready, select the Record button to begin capturing your audio and video feedback.
  5. Get ready to record as the tool counts down. Your recording can be up to five minutes long. You will not see a live video feed as you record if you are recording using your camera.
  6. Click the Pause button to pause and resume recording your feedback. Click the red Record button again to stop recording. You can delete the recording and start over if you want to re-record.
  7. Select Save and Exit if you’re satisfied with the recording and want to share it with the student.
  8. Next, you rename the recording and add alternative text to make it accessible to all users. The system uses the recording time and date for these fields by default, which you may keep if you wish.
  9. Select Insert recording to finish the process and insert the feedback into the editor.
  10. Click Submit on the Feedback to Learner editor.

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