KU's Learning Management System

Grade Center

The Grade Center in Blackboard is a place for instructors to track student performance. The Grade Center can calculate grades, organize student-submitted assignment documents, record the last time each student accessed the course and include point-and-click rubrics that can be used to facilitate scoring of assignments.

The Grade Center is customizable. Instructors can select which grades are displayed to students on their My Grades page, supply feedback to the students, create weighted columns and exclude certain assessments from final score calculations. Faculty can create grade columns for any graded activities they want to record such as projects, class participation or attendance. 

Students can benefit from seeing grade progress or instructor feedback and, if necessary, adjust their approach to learning to improve performance. NOTE: Students can access their own, individual grades from the “My Grades” page. Instructions for adding a My Grades button to the course menu are below.

For more information about Grade Center, select from the following:


Create a My Grades Button on the Left Course Menu

  1. Confirm Edit Mode is set to ON in the upper right.
  2. Click the plus + symbol at the top of the left menu.
  3. Select Tool Link.
  4. Type the name. For Type select My Grades from the pulldown menu.
  5. Click the checkbox Available to Users.
  6. Click Submit.

Create a Grade Column for Manual Grade Entry

  1. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  2. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Click the Create Column button.
  5. Type a Column Name. Tip: A space-saving short name is best.
  6. You may skip Grade Center Display Name and Description.
  7. Select Primary Display (optional). Score is the default and is recommended. Secondary Display allows you to display an alternative grade category (e.g. percentage, letter). Secondary Display is visible only in the instruction view of the Grade Center. In other words, it is not displayed to students.
  8. Enter Points Possible.
  9. To show the due date to students, select a Due Date (optional).
  10. Select other Options if necessary. To hide the grades from students, select No for Show this Column to Students.
  11. Click Submit.
  12. To change a column setting, click the arrow to the right of the column heading and select Edit Column Information.

Manually Enter Grades

  1. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  2. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Click a grade cell.
  5. Type the grade.
  6. Hit the Enter key on your keyboard to move to the next student.
  7. Repeat to enter additional grades.

Column Organization: Change Column Order, Hide or Reveal Columns

Change the Column Order

  1. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  2. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Put your cursor on the Manage button.
  5. Select Column Organization.
  6. Position the mouse pointer on the cross icon to left of the column you wish to move. Press and hold the left mouse button, drag the column up or down, to change the order or the columns. Release the left mouse button.
  7. Click Submit.

Hide Columns from the Instructor View of the Grade Center

To clean up your view of the Grade Center, you may selectively hide grade columns. Hiding columns from the instructor view of the Grade Center does not delete columns permanently. Hidden columns may still be visible to your students.

  1. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  2. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Click the arrow on the right of the column heading you would like to hide
  5. Select Hide Column.
  6. To hide the column from students, select Hide from Students (on/off).

Make Hidden Columns Visible to the Instructor View

  1. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  2. Click Grade Center in the Control Panel.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Put your cursor on the Manage button.
  5. Select Column Organization.
  6. Scroll to the bottom of the page, click the checkboxes to the left of the columns you would like to make visible.
  7. Put your cursor on the Show/Hide button at the bottom or top of the screen.
  8.  Select Show Selected Columns to make the column visible. (The column name will appear in a black font.)
  9. Click Submit.

Hide Grade Columns from Students

  1. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  2. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Click the arrow on the right of the column heading you would like to hide.
  5. Select Hide from Students (on/off).
  6. You will see a red slash by the column heading when the column is hidden from students. If you would like to make the column visible to students, repeat the steps above.

Export/Import Grade Center

You can export the Blackboard Grade Center as an Excel file. You can choose to download the entire Grade Center or one selected column or student data only. Any downloaded student or grade data should be stored and handled appropriately.

Some instructors enter grades offline and then upload them to Blackboard. The column headings in the import document must match the existing Blackboard Grade Center columns. New columns cannot be created outside of Blackboard and then uploaded to the Grade Center.

For instructions on downloading a final letter grade column from Blackboard to then be uploaded to Enroll & Pay please see the Enroll & Pay webpage ».

Export Grade Center

  1. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  2. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Put your cursor on the Work Offline button in the upper right
  5. Select Download.
  6. Select Full Grade Center, one Selected Column or User Information Only to be downloaded.
  7. Under Options leave the default settings (Delimiter Type: Tab and Include Hidden Information: No).
  8. Under Save Location be sure My Computer is selected.
  9. Click Submit.
  10. On the Download Grades screen click Download.
  11. Save the file.
  12. Click OK to return to the Full Grade Center view.

For more information on working offline please see Blackboard's webpage Work Offline with Grade Data ».


Import Grade Center

  1. Click Grade Center from Control Panel.
  2. Ensure the Edit Mode is On, found at the top-right of your course window.
  3. Click Full Grade Center.
  4. Put your cursor on the Work Offline button in the upper right
  5. Select Upload.
  6. Click Browse My Computer.
  7. Select the correct file to upload.
  8. Click Submit.

Weighted Total Setup

The Weighted Total column in the Grade Center can be set to assign percentages of the final grade to columns and categories. This is an alternative to using a straight points total.

Below is an example showing how to set up columns, categories and the Weighted Total settings in order to calculate weighted grades. Your Grade Center may use columns or categories or both. There are many options for customizing these settings for your grading workflow. Contact the Educational Technologists at 785-864-2600 and itedtech@ku.edu to discuss any questions you have about grading and using a Weighted Total in your course's Grade Center.

Here is a simplified syllabus to use as an example:

Homework (10 assignments) 25%
Quizzes (5 quizzes) 25%
Oral Presentation 15%
Group Project 10%
Final Exam 25%
 
  1. Identify which columns and which categories will be used. In this example there are multiple homework assignments and multiple quizzes which can be assigned to a category. The other items are single grade columns.
  2. Create grade columns.
    1. In the Full Grade Center click the Create Column button.
    2. Enter the column name and the points possible, other settings are optional. Click Submit.
    3. Repeat this process to create all the columns.
  3. Create categories.
    1. Navigate to the Full Grade Center, put the cursor on the Manage button, select Categories.
    2. Click Create Category, enter a name, click Submit.
    3. Repeat this process to create other categories as needed. For the example syllabus, you would create categories called Homework and Quiz.
  4. Assign columns to the correct category. 
    1. In the Full Grade Center, put the cursor on the Manage button, select Column Organization.
    2. Click the checkbox next to each column in one category.
    3. When they are selected click the ‘Change Category to…’ button and select the correct category name. For the example syllabus, the ten homework columns should be assigned to the Homework category and the five quiz columns should be assigned to the Quiz category.
    4. Click Submit.
  5. Set the Weighted Total percentages for columns and categories.
    1. Columns
      1. In the Select Columns section of the settings page, in the upper left box, click on the name of the column (Ex: Oral Presentation).
      2. Click the small arrowhead to the right of the Columns to Select box to move the column (Ex: Oral Presentation) into the Selected box on the right. 
      3. Click the textbox and enter the percentage of the final grade for the selected column. In our example, we would enter 15 for the percentage of the final grade for the Oral Presentation.
      4. Repeat this process to assign the percentage of the final grade for other single columns (Ex: Group Project and Final Exam).
    2. Categories
      1. In the Select Categories section of the settings page, lower left box, click on the name of the category (Ex: Homework).
      2. Click the small arrowhead to the right of the Categories to Select box to move the category (Ex: Homework) into the Selected box on the right.
      3. Click the textbox and enter the percentage of the final grade for the selected category. In our example, we would enter 25 for the percentage of the final grade for Homework.
      4. Repeat this process to assign the percentage of the final grade for the other categories. (Ex: Quiz)
  6. Decide whether to use the Calculate as Running Total setting. This is the default setting and if you use it you will need to enter zeroes for uncompleted work. Otherwise students’ Weighted Total grades will appear inflated.
  7. Click Submit at the bottom of the Weighted Total settings page.

Additional Resources from Blackboard:

For more information about grading in Blackboard, visit Blackboard's Grading ».


Source: Blackboard Help »


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