Download (and Print?) a Graded Assignment

At some point you may want to keep a copy of the feedback your professor gave you on a written assignment submitted through Blackboard, either for your own records or for a portfolio-type project. Courses on Blackboard won’t necessarily be available forever — your professor may decide to disable them at any time, so we recommend capturing any feedback you wish to save as soon as you receive that feedback.

Fortunately, the process is pretty easy.

First, locate the assignment in question in your My Grades page. You can do this inside the course by going to TOOLS then choosing MY GRADES.

Click on the assignment name

assignment name

This will launch a “Review Submission History” page, which shows a copy of the marked-up paper in a view. At the top-left of the markup page you’ll find a zoom-out button, a zoom-in button, and a download button. Click the download button.


Next, you’ll be prompted whether you’d rather to download the original file you uploaded or an annotated PDF of the file. If you wish to keep the professor’s feedback, choose Download annotated PDF.

download annotated

You’ll then be asked what you wish to name your download and where you wish to save it. Choose an appropriate name and location. Once you have downloaded the file to your computer, you can print at your leisure.


Subscribe to a Discussion Board Forum

Want to be notified whenever someone posts to a discussion board forum? If the option has been enabled by the instructor, you can subscribe to a forum. When you’ve subscribed to a forum you’ll get an email (in your UDM inbox) whenever someone posts on the forum.

Depending on how the forum is set up, you may receive an email alert containing a link to the new forum post, or you may receive an email that includes the link as well as the full text of your post.

Subscribing is easy, just click the SUBSCRIBE button at the top of the forum page.


If you want to stop receiving email alerts, click the Unsubscribe button (which replaces the Subscribe button when you are subscribed to a forum).

How do I print or download a test in Blackboard?

The answer is, its not very easy to do! That’s by design to help preserve the integrity of your online exams.

However, there are times when faculty may need to print a test for review, to provide paper version for a student, or any number of reasons. You may not be able to download or print a test very easily, BUT IDS CAN HELP! If a test is in Blackboard, currently you have to manually copy/paste each question or copy the whole test, getting a bunch of extra content you didn’t want or need in the process. This can be very frustrating to re-format your entire test, not to mention time-consuming.

If you contact the Instructional Design Studio by phone at 313-578-0580 or email at, we can pull your test out of Blackboard, and into your hands via PDF, txt, or Word file. Printing is also available for you to pick up upon request. Please allow 24 (business) hours for this process to occur, but it may take less.


Link to an interactive tool from a content area

Are you having your students engage in online discussion, write blog or journal posts, collaborate using a wiki, or work in groups? If you’re organizing your course by topic rather than content type (that is, putting all the content and activities for a unit / lesson / module / week together in a single folder), you’ll links directly to these activities inside your content area.

Once you’re familiar with the process, linking directly to these tools is easy. But the first couple times you go through the process it may be a little confusing.

First, in the content area you’d like to add the link to (Unit 01, say), point to TOOLS, and select the tool you’d like to link to. We’ll use the Discussion tool for this example, but process is the same for any of the above tools.

tools - discussion

Next you’ll be prompted to select where you’d like the link to point. Do you want to point to the tool’s main page — e.g., the main Discussion Board page from which any of the discussion board forums can be selected? Often, it would be better to link the students to the particular item on that page you want them to post to (sticking with the discussion example, a particular discussion forum). If you’ve already created the form, choose the second option (Select a Discussion Board Forum) and choose the appropriate item. Haven’t created the item (discussion forum) yet? Click the CREATE NEW button.


If you went the CREATE NEW route, your next step will be to create that new item. So if you decided to add a new discussion forum, you’ll be creating the discussion forum — name, instructions / description, availability, etc.

When you click SUBMIT on this on this page, you’ll be bounced back to the CREATE LINK page above, this time with your new new item in the select list. Select the item and click NEXT to finish the process.

The final step of the CREATE LINK process is a page that probably pretty familiar to you by now. The name of the thing you’re linking to will be pulled in automatically, but you can change that if necessary. Then, in the text space, provide your students with instructions on how they should use the tool you’re linking to. Remember that, even if you’ve included instructions on the instance — when you created the discussion board forum, say — your students will be bypassing that page, so you’ll want to reproduce those instructions here.

Similarly, when you put availability dates on this link, you’re setting the availability for the link. If you haven’t set availability dates on the item itself (e.g., the discussion forum), then students will still be able to access the item through the course TOOLS page. If you need to adjust availability dates (make the access window longer for a discussion board forum), you’ll want to adjust the dates on the link and on the item itself (again, via the TOOLS page).


Once you’ve got the link’s settings the way you want them, click SUBMIT to add your link to the page.


Linking to Articles in UDM Subscription Databases

To fix a link so it works both on and off campus, you’ll need to start with the article’s on-campus address. Then, add the following text to the beginning of the database link:

This should work for links to any UDM database/e-book subscription with the exception of databases that require additional login information such as MeL, provided you start with an on campus address.


For clarity, I’m going to use a Sage Journals article to demonstrate.

On campus, the address of the article I want to link to is:

sage journal address

This url will work for folks on campus, but not for folks off campus. However, when we add the above to the start of the url, we get a link that will work whether you are on or off campus:


Note: If you get a 404 error or the link does not work, make sure there are no spaces in the link and that “http://” or “https://” appears immediately after the equals sign. If necessary, add “http://” to any link that doesn’t start with it already.

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