Changes to the Assignment Tool in Blackboard

One of the most commonly used features of Blackboard on our campus is the Assignment tool in Blackboard. This allows instructors to receive their papers digitally, cutting down on printing and the possibility of losing a physical paper. The options for Assignments are now much more streamlined and provide the option to incorporate SafeAssign into every assignment. Let’s explore them by setting up a new assignment.

 

view of the edit assignment page

The new Edit Assignment page breaks down the options into collapsable groups.

 

When you enter a new assignment, many of the options that were formerly listed on the main screen are now in collapsable sections.  If you click on any of the headings, they will expand. Let’s explore each of these new sections and where we can find commonly used features.

 

The Submission Details area includes attempt and SafeAssign options.

The Submission Details area includes attempt and SafeAssign options.

 

Under the first section, Submission Details, we can adjust the information on how many attempts students receive and if this assignment will be treated as a SafeAssignment.

For those of you who have used SafeAssign in the past, you no longer have to go to a separate tool to create a SafeAssignment or to grade them. These are now fully integrated into the main Assignments tool (including In-Line Grading) so that your workflow is simplified! You can select your options for SafeAssign right from this page, and all submissions submitted after SafeAssign is turned on will generate a report on the work.

PLEASE NOTE: There is currently a bug with SafeAssign that causes SafeAssign to turn itself off when an assignment is made unavailable by an instructor. This does NOT happen when using availability dates.

To fix this, when you manually enable the assignment, be sure to check the SafeAssign option.

To use the In-Line Grading tool for previously created SafeAssignments, you will need to re-create these with the new Assignment tool.

 

The Grading Options section allows you to set up Anonymous and Delegated Grading.

The Grading Options section allows you to set up Anonymous and Delegated Grading.

 

Grading Options allows instructors to make changes to the default set up. You can choose to make grading on the assignment Anonymous Grading, which can help prevent any bias in the process. You can also enable Delegated Grading, a new tool in Blackboard that allows you to set up more than one grader in a course and have each assignment reviewed by more than one grader, then reconcile that information.  This is great for classes with portfolio reviews or other special features not easily served by the basic grading options.

For more information on Delegated Grading, Blackboard has resources available online that walks through the options and features here.

 

The Display of Grades area includes Grade Center preferences for the assignment.

The Display of Grades area includes Grade Center preferences for the assignment.

 

Last but certainly not least, the Display of Grades section details how the instructor and students view the grades. You can opt to make a draft assignment not included in Grade Center calculations, or hide the grades on a pre-test from students. Each of these options is straightforward, and there are many scenarios in which they are very useful.

 

If you are ever uncertain or have questions about these options, please don’t hesitate to ask Tom or Lily.