Wednesday, October 23, 2013

New Blackboard Feature of the Week: Inline Assignment Grading and Retention Center

Inline Grading for Assignments

Previously, instructors had to download student-submitted files in order to view, grade or edit assignments. Now, instructors can view, comment on, and grade student-submitted assignment files without leaving the Grade Assignment page.

Additionally, annotation tools are now available via the inline viewer, enabling instructors to provide feedback (e.g. comments, highlights, and annotations) directly on the document. Supported document types that can be graded this way are Word (.doc, .docx), PowerPoint (.ppt, .pptx), Excel (.xls, .xlsx), and PDF (.pdf). Once you have saved your feedback, you can download the original (unmarked) assignment file or a marked up version in PDF format. If a student submits an assignment via the Assignment Manager that is not in one of the aforementioned formats, you will have to download their submission and view it using the native application as you did before.

Note:  If you work on grading a student’s assignment for more than 30 minutes without saving, you may receive the following error message and be returned to the Grade Center:
“The requested page could not be displayed. Please try again. If this continues, please contact your system administrator for assistance.”
Your input will be saved and you can resume grading the assignment.

For more information on Inline Grading, click here.

Retention Center

The Retention Center, which replaces the Early Warning System, helps instructors identify which students are at risk of failing a course. Based on both pre-configured and customized rules, students’ engagement and participation are visually displayed, alerting instructors to which students are at risk. From the Retention Center, instructors can communicate with struggling students and help them take immediate action for improvement. The Retention Center is on by default and visible in the "My Blackboard" menu. It is also accessible in the Evaluation section of your course Control Panel. The information in the Retention Center is for instructors only and is not visible to students.

For more information on the Retention Center, click here.

For video on Getting Started with the Retention Center, click here.

For further details and videos on the new Blackboard 9.1 SP13 interface and features, please visit What's New for Faculty - Blackboard 9.1 SP13. Here you will find a list of new features and links related to this new service pack. Please visit this site and get acquainted with the new features available this fall semester.

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