Blackboard Tips #1 – Adding an Assignment to a Course

This is the first of a planned short series of screencasts that I am creating to help my colleagues at Swansea and further afield do more with Blackboard.

One thing we ask staff to do is provide a receipt for coursework submissions. But if the classes are large, this can be difficult to do. Blackboard has an assignment tool that can be used by students to upload electronic documents. If provides a receipt; can enforce submission deadlines; and the submissions can be graded and feedback provided all from the same interface.

This video, which is best viewed at HD full screen, takes you through this process.

This is what I go through on the video.


  • Change name of Practice Course so that it will stand out later
  • Add test student user so you can see what the student sees.

Add assignment to assignments page

Put text into the assignment field. I explain that your instructions need to be clear and suggest the following:

  • The submission instructions should including clear information about what the students should upload, the file naming convention you want them to use, and the file types you expect.
  • If you want them to enter any information along with the submission, you should specify that too.
  • If only one attempt is allowed, state that and specify clearly the submission deadline. A note about your arrangements for late submission is useful if it is allowed.
  • It’s a good idea to state when they can expect to receive a grade and feedback. On submission, Blackboard has been set to send them an email acknowledging submission. It’s worth telling them to ensure that their email inbox is not full.
  • It may also be useful to explain what they can expect to see when they submit, attempt to resubmit or visit the “My Grades” before the assessment is marked. I plan to make a video about this in the future and as more assignments are used, they’ll get used to the procedure.

I also explain the assignment settings (release date, submission date etc) and discuss some of the options and how I typically set them up.

Login as a student

Finally, using the demo student account that I set up in the setup, I show how a student will submit the assignment, what he/she sees and point out what Blackboard considers a receipt and the various ways that it can be accessed.