Access Old Courses
Information Technology Services automatically disables student access to completed Blackboard courses approximately eight weeks after the last day of classes. Student access to spring semester courses is disabled on July 1. Student access to summer semester courses is disabled on October 1. Student access to fall semester courses ends on February 1.
Once student access to a previous semester’s Blackboard course has been disabled, the only person who can access that course or make its contents available to students again is the course’s instructor.
To access course materials or individual grades on assignments from a previous semester’s Blackboard course, please contact the course’s instructor and request that he or she either
- Email you a copy of the content you wish to access, or
- Manually make his or her old Blackboard course available to the students again.
The quickest way to locate an instructor’s email address or telephone number is to use USC’s Faculty, Staff, and Affiliate Directory.
If you are unable to reach the instructor, please contact that instructor’s department chair or curricular dean (see http://academics.usc.edu/).
Submitting your work with the Assignment tool in Blackboard allows you to easily upload your homework files to your instructor and receive files back, along with your grade. There is no need for paper or even email.
You can access an Assignment in Blackboard when it’s been deployed by your instructor in a Content Area of the course. Your instructor may have an entire area in your course dedicated to all assignments, perhaps even linked on the Course menu, or assignments may be placed along with related lesson material.
You can identify Assignments by the icon located to the left of their titles in the content area of the course.
Once the instructor informs you that an assignment is available and where to find it, read and follow all instructions carefully, view the rubric if one has been provided, complete the work as directed, then click Submit to pass in your work.
A Rubric is a tool that lists evaluation criteria for an assignment. Rubrics can help your understand what is expected and how you might best meet the requirements of an assignment. They also help instructors explain how your work is evaluated.
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Submitting an Assignment
Once you click the Assignment link, you will be brought to the Assignment page as pictured here.
Assignments and the Inactivity Timer
Something to keep in mind is Blackboard has a 30 minute activity timer and typing is not a recognizable activity in the Blackboard system. If you are typing an assignment and it takes more than 30 minutes to complete, the page may reset. When the page resets, it will not save your work and you will lose the body of your message. We recommend that students compose assignments in a word processing program and either copy and paste the text into the text area or attach the file using the File Attachment button.
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Confirming Your Submission
When submitting an Assignment in Blackboard, particularly ones which include file attachments, you should take the time to confirm your submission. You should receive a confirmation message after you submit your assignment. To be safe, however, you will probably want to confirm you submission manually. There are two ways that you can tell your Assignment has been submitted successfully.
|Manual Submission Confirmation|
|Assignment Link||Click on the Assignment link to view the submission history for that assignment. If you are allowed to make more than one submission, you will also see a Submission History that will display all your submissions by date and time.|
|My Grades Tool||You can also confirm your Assignment submission by accessing the My Grades area of a course. An exclamation point (!) will appear next to any Assignment that has been successfully submitted. You can access the submission history page by clicking either the name of the assignment or the green exclamation point (!).|
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Reviewing Your Results
Assignments submitted in Blackboard are not scored automatically, but need to be reviewed by your instructor. After reviewing your work, you instructor can use the same Assignment tool to provide you with a grade, written feedback, and additional files. You then can review the information in two ways: through the Assignment itself and through the My Grades area.
To review the assignment results through the Assignment Itself:
- Return to the Assignment for which you want to review the results.
- Click on the Assignment link to open the Submission History.
- At the bottom of your submission will be Instructor Feedback that will have a grade, any comments, and any attached files.
To review the assignment results through the My Grades Area:
- Click My Grades link in the Course Menu if it is available. Remember, your instructor can rename the title of this link. You will know you are on the right page because My Grades will be at the top.
- Look for the Assignment for which you want to review the results.
- Click on the name of the assignment to see instructor feedback, inline comments, or to obtain files that may have returned. Additionally, some comments will appear in the comments column to the right of the grade column.
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