Collect work from students, review it, grade it, and provide feedback.

Teachers can grade assignments using a numerical or custom scale, or an advanced grading method such as a rubric. Final grades are recorded in the gradebook.

When reviewing assignments, provide feedback. Leave feedback comments, upload files such as marked-up student submissions, or spoken audio feedback.

View submissions

You can grade assignments from several areas in your course.

  • Open Grader: Open Grader displays grades in an adjustable, two-pane view. You can view, grade, and navigate through submitted assignments. Assignments and Open Forums are currently supported.

    Steps in Snap: Course Dashboard > Open Grader > Show Activities Requiring Grading

    Steps in other themes: Course administration > Open Grader > Show Activities Requiring Grading

  • Assignment activity: You can grade submitted assignments directly from the assignment activity in your course.

    Steps in Snap: Assignment > View all submissions or Grade

    Steps in other themes: Assignment > View all submissions or Grade

    Select the link available to access the submitted assignments for grading.

  • Gradebook: All graded items appear in a table, where you can override grades and give feedback. You can enter a grade for each student directly in the table or select the column heading to view submissions.

    It is not recommended to override grades in the gradebook. We suggest grading from within the assignment submissions page or from the Open grader.

    Steps in Snap: Course Dashboard > Gradebook

    Steps in other themes: Navigation block > Grades

More on grading


Grade assignment submissions

How it looks in the assignment activity

How it looks in the Open Grader

In both the assignment activity and the Grader, student submissions appear in the left pane. If students submit files as their submission, the assignment activity converts the file to PDF for annotation. If you are using the Grader to view the submission, select Launch PDF editor to convert the file to PDF for annotation.

We recommend using the Open grader, if you want an accessible view of the submission.

Grade student submissions in the right pane. If an assignment uses an advanced grading method such as a rubrics, checklist, or marking guide, you can view them from here.

Select Save changes in the assignment activity or Save grade and next in the Grader to move to the next student who has submitted that assignment. Grades saved here are recorded in the course Gradebook.


Mark up PDF submissions

If you want to mark up student submissions you need to do these things when you create the assignment:

  • Select File submissions for the assignment Submission types.
  • Select Simple direct grading for the assignment Grading method.

Use these tools in the PDF editor to mark up the submission:

  • Use the right and left arrows to move between pages.
  • Search for comments in the submission.
  • Add comments to the submission. You can change color of the comments.
  • Move or delete the comment or mark up.
  • Mark up the submission with free-hand drawing, lines and objects.
  • Highlight words and sentences you want to stand out. You can change the color of the highlight.
  • Stamp the submission with a happy face, sad face, checkmark or red x.


Source: /Blackboard_Open_LMS/Teacher/Grading/Open_Grader. Copied in /Blackboard_Open_LMS/Teacher/Content/Activities/Assignments/Grade_Assignments_and_Provide_Feedback

Be sure to update in both places: Marking workflows, Allocate markers, notify the allocated markers, allocated markers FAQs


Marking workflows

With marking workflows, marks go through these stages before being released to students.

  • Not marked: Marking hasn’t started.
  • In marking: Marking is in progress.
  • Marking completed: Marking is finished but the marker might need to go back for corrections.
  • In review: Marking is being reviewed the teacher in charge for quality checking.
  • Ready for release: The teacher in charge is satisfied with the marking but is waiting to give students access to the mark.
  • Released: The student can access the grades and feedback.

Marking workflows are ideal when you have more than one marker. For example, a teaching assistant can mark the submission and mark it complete for the teacher’s review. The teacher can then release the mark to the student.

If you want to use marking workflows you need to do these things to set it up.

  • Select Use marking workflow in the assignment Grade settings.
  • Give another user marking permission. From Course administration select Users. Select Enrolled Users and Assign Roles. Select non-editing teacher. Choose who you want to give permission to. You can then give them give them assignments to mark.

    You must have permission to assign markers to this.

If you want to release grades to more than one student or all students at the same time, grade from the assignment instead of the Grader. The Grader enables you to release a grade only one student at a time.

Allocate markers

Steps in Snap: Assignment > Grade All Submissions > Set allocated marker

Steps in other themes: Assignment > Grade All Submissions > Set allocated marker

You can designate one marker for all student submissions, or designate several different markers across student submissions.

  1. Access the assignment and select Grade All Submissions.
  2. Select a set of students by checking the boxes.
  3. Select Set allocated marker in the With selected menu.
  4. Select Go.
  5. Select an Allocated Marker from the menu.
    • Only users with grading permissions appear in the menu. To add a user to the list, select Locally assigned roles in Administration. Select Non-editing teacher and select a Potential user. Select Add.
    • When allocating markers to several students at one time, it is possible to allocate a marker to their own submission. Double-check the grading list to ensure this doesn’t occur.
  6. Save changes.

Notify the allocated markers

Allocated markers aren’t notified that they are assigned to student submissions. Tell your markers so they know to check for submissions.

If you enable notifications in the assignment settings, an email is sent to markers telling when students submit something for them to mark. Let your markers know to expect these emails and how to mark the submission.

What do allocated markers see?

The user specified as the allocated marker for the activity sees the student’s submission in these locations:

  • Grade All Submissions in the assignment: Only assignments that are submitted and allocated to the marker are listed.
  • Grader: Allocated markers see only their own submissions for all gradable activities except for the activity that they were assigned to mark. For that activity, the drop-down menu shows the current user’s name as well as the name of the user to mark. After a marker assigns a grade, the marker can change the workflow status.

Do both instructors and allocated markers grade submissions?

The student receives only one grade. Both the instructor and allocated marker can update the grade and change the Marking workflow state as many times as necessary. The workflow state is visible in the grading grid.


Give feedback

The feedback you provide extends the learning process. Adding your insight to student submissions reinforces key concepts, and encourages further analysis. Recognize exceptional submissions. Use them as a standard for quality or correcting misconceptions to benefit all students.

Select the feedback options that are most useful to you and your students.

Optionally, you can upload feedback files . They are available when you select Feedback files while creating or editing the assignment. Feedback files are visible to both students and teachers.

Students view overall feedback in Feedback comments when they access a graded assignment.

Activity comments

Activity comments appear for submitted assignments by default. Both students and teachers can add comments to a submission. You can add comments before or after assignment grading. Activity comments do not appear in the gradebook.

Teachers view and add comments for submitted assignments in these areas:

  • Open Grader under Activity comments.
  • Through the assignment by selecting Grade all submissions, and scrolling to Submission comments column.

Students view and add comments in the Submission Comments section.

If you turned on the comments in assignment settings, the Activity comments will sync for assignments.