Using the Assignment Tool

Blackboard Assignments Quick Start

Grading in Blackboard Quick Start



Online assignments allow you to create coursework and manage the grades and feedback for each student separately or as groups of students. In an assignment, you may include a description, point value, and file attachments. You may create assignments in several courses areas, including content areas, learning modules, lesson plans, or content folders.

Using the Assignment tool is an easy and efficient method of submitting and retrieving assignments, and providing grade information (including feedback) to your students. With this tool, students submit their file(s) and/or typed responses electronically through the View/Complete link associated with the assignment.

When an Instructor, Teaching Assistant or Course Builder sets up an assignment, a column is added to the Grade Center where the students’ assignment files and text comments are stored and retrieved. Instructors, Teaching Assistants and Graders may download all, or selected submissions, and provide grades and additional feedback through the Grade Center.

Creating an Assignment

      1. Navigate to the content that you wish the Assignment to appear in.
      2. Click on the Assessments button and then select Assignment from the drop-down menu.
        Create Assignment menu choice in the Assessment menu.
      3. In Section 1: Assignment Information, type a name for your Assignment in the Name and Color field. Use a descriptive name to help users identify the Assignment. If desired, choose a color for your assignment by clicking on the arrow to the right of the Name and Color field.
        Type descriptive name in Name and Color Field
      4. Enter any instructions that may be necessary to complete the Assignment in the Instructions field. You may format the text and include images, links, multimedia, mashups, and attachments using the functions in the content editor. Attachments you add using the content editor can be launched in a new window and have alternate text added to describe the attachment.
      5. If you wish to upload your instructions into CourseWeb, click on the Browse My Computer, Browse Course, or Browse Content Collection button in Section 2: Assignment Files and locate your file name. Optionally, you may enter a Link Name. If you do not provide a Link Name, then the file name is used as the link name. Be sure to remind your students to attach any required files to the assignment before clicking Submit, as their assignments are not completed until they are submitted. You might also tell them that they must contact you if they submit the wrong file, forget to attach a file, or have any other problems so that you can reset the assignment attempt.
      6. In Section 3: Grading, enter the Points Possible for the Assignment. If no points are entered, the assignment column is still created in the Grade Center and the Points Possible can be edited by editing the column directly from the Grade Center. After students complete and submit an Assignment, the Instructor, Teaching Assistant or Grader may enter a score in the Grade Center. A grade is calculated based on the score and the Points Possible.Add points possible
      7. Plagiarism Checking with SafeAssign — Under Submission Details, you’ll find a check box that allows you to enable Plagiarism Tools, which uses the SafeAssign service. You can view the results in the Grade Details tab in the Grade Center.
      8. Check the first check-box to enable the tool. The second one allows students to view the report generated. The third allows students to submit their assignment as a draft, and not include the upload to be checked against future assignments.
      9. Under Grading Options, you’ll find options for Anonymous and Delegated Grading. Click the links to learn more.
      10. If you do not want your assignment to be immediately available to your students, uncheck the Make the Assignment Available box CheckBoxIcon in Section 4: Availability. If you want to make the link to the assignment available to your students for a specific window of time, check the box and complete the Limit Availability fields. If you select the Display After option to make your assignment available to students at a later date, you must also check the Make the Assignment Available to Students check box.
      11. Select the appropriate option for Number of Attempts.
      12. Optionally, use the Due Date fields to enter a due date for the Assignment.
        Due dates for assignment
      13. Choose whether you want the students to complete the assignment individually or as groups in the Recipients area of the form:Check for group or individual assignments
      14. Click Submit Submit button when you are finished.
      15. Students will click on the title of the Assignment you created, where they will be able to complete, save, and submit the Assignment.
        Sample Assignment course link.

Back to Top

About Multiple Attempts

You can allow more than one attempt on an assignment. This is a good way to permit students to send in drafts and earn credit on improvements. You can provide feedback on a large assignment so students can demonstrate mastery. Be sure to inform students which of your assignments allow multiple attempts and what the expectations and grading policies are for each attempt. Providing multiple attempts can help students stay on track, raise the quality of assignments, and ultimately improve student success and retention.


When you allow multiple attempts for an assignment, you can also select which attempt to use in the Grade Center from the Score Attempts Using drop-down list.

Back to Top

Deleting Assignments

You may delete assignments. When you delete an assignment in your course that has student submissions, you are also deleting all the submissions. You have two options available:

      • Preserve the scores in the Grade Center, but delete all assignment attempts. Though the scores remain in the Grade Center, you cannot access the students’ submissions again.
      • Delete the assignment and the Grade Center column with the assigned grades.

To prevent submissions from being deleted, choose Cancel and make the assignment unavailable rather than deleting it.

Back to Top


Viewing Submitted Assignments

Students who have submitted an assignment will have a green exclamation point Green exclamation point in the cell that corresponds to their name. This symbol indicates that the assignment has been submitted and needs to be graded. To view submitted assignments for each student and to provide grades and feedback, complete the following steps:

  1. Go to the Grade Center area of the Control Panel and click on Full Grade Center.
  2. In the column for that assignment, hover your mouse in the cell containing the green exclamation point Green exclamation point.
  3. Click on the Action Item Button Action Item Button that appears to the right of the exclamation point Green exclamation point.
  4. Click the Attempt [Date] from the drop-down menu.
    Viewing specific attempts

All submissions for a particular assignment can be viewed and graded in succession, from the start to the finish of the class roster by clicking on the Action Item ButtonAction Item Button that appears in the header of the grading column, and selecting Grade Attempts.
Image of the Grading Column menu with "Grade Attempts" highlighted

Back to Top

Grading and Providing Feedback to Students

You can leave a score or grade, feedback and annotations directly on students’ papers electronically with the Inline Grading features available in Blackboard. Please see the Inline Grading for Assignments article for details.

Downloading Assignments (Blackboard OnDemand Video Presentation 1:35)

download assignments

Back to Top


Download Assignments All At One Time

To download the submitted assignment files all at one time, complete the following steps:

  1. Go to the Grade Center area Link to Grade Center of the Control Panel and click on Full Grade Center.
  2. Click on the Action Item Button icon Action Item Button to the right of the column heading for the assignment. Sample Assignment Grade Center Item Heading
  3. Select Assignment File Download from the drop-down menu.
    Assignment file download
  4. Click on the check boxes Check Box Icon for the students whose assignments you want to download. Notice the links labeled “Select All,” “Select Ungraded,” and “Unselect All.” These may simplify this task for you.
    Select Users Box
  5. Click on the Submit button. This creates a zip file with the selected assignments to download.
  6. Before you click the OK button, click on the “Download assignments now” link to save the file to your computer or personal storage device.
    Download assignments link

Back to Top



One Comment

  1. Hi CIDDE, I just wanted to say thanks for all these helpful web pages regarding Blackboard. This is making it much faster and easier to use!

Comments are closed.