Wrapping Up the Semester on Blackboard

As another semester comes to a close, let’s take a minute to wrap up our Blackboard courses. Here is just a brief list of actions you can take to clean up after another busy semester and maintain your courses and their data.

Make Your Course Unavailable to Students

Why?

If an instructor has assignment files, uploaded copyright materials, or other information in the Blackboard course, the course should be made unavailable when the semester ends. Copyrighted materials, even when qualifying for fair use, are only to be made available to students during the time of their class. Assignment files can be shared by students with other students planning to take the class in the future. And of course, there are many other files that an instructor may wish to restrict access to.

How?

  1. Go to the Control Panel and click Customization.
  2. Click Properties.
  3. Under 3. Set Availability, click the radio button for No.
  4. Click Submit at the bottom.
location of radio button to change

Set Availability is located under Properties in the Control Panel

Exporting the Grade Center as a Spreadsheet

Why?

Just like keeping a paper grade book or an Excel spreadsheet, many instructors like to keep copies of their grade data beyond the end of the class, in case of grade challenges or student requests for recommendations. While we keep Blackboard classes on the system for two years after their completion, you may want those grades for recommendations down the line. Downloading the grades from Blackboard is very straightforward and can be opened in any spreadsheet program, including Microsoft Excel.

How?

  1. Go to Control Panel and click Grade Center.
  2. In the Work Offline box, click Download.
  3. On the Download Grades page, adjust the options for:
    • Data – select Full Grade Center
    • Options – select the delimiter type as Tab
    • Save Location – select download location as My Computer
    • Click Submit
  4. You can then click the link to download the file to your computer.
the options for downloading grade center data

The initial settings for downloading your Grade Center data will provide you with all the information you need.

Saving Student Assignments

Why?

In the case of final papers or projects, an instructor may wish to keep papers for record keeping, for longitudinal assessment, or for using as examples in future classes.

How?

  1. Go to Control Panel and click Grade Center.
  2. Click on the grey arrow next to the name of the assignment/column.
  3. Select Assignment File Download.
  4. Select Check All or select individual users.
  5. Click Submit.
  6. Click Download Assignments Now.
  7. Click Save and choose a location and name. The file will be a .zip (compressed) file that contains each of the individual assignment submissions.
location of the assignment file download link
The option to download all assignment files is located under the options menu for the Grade Center column.

 

Hiding Completed Classes from My Courses

Why?

The My Courses area in Blackboard can get pretty cluttered. Hiding courses that have ended make locating the current classes very easy.

How?

  1. In the My Courses box click the Gear icon in the upper right.
  2. In the Display Course Name column, uncheck the box.
  3. Click Submit.
location of the gear icon

If you cannot see the gear icon in My Courses, click in the gray box.