Blackboard Tips for Faculty and Staff

More to Come

Be the first five UNC faculty or staff to send an email to our IDD address and you can win a prize! In the email tell us that you read the tip and how you found our tips page.

Look for future tips on UNC Today!

#6- Copy a Course from One Semester to the Next


The most efficient way to copy a course from one semester to the next is to use the Control Panel, Packages and Utilities, and use the Select All button to copy everything in the course. Just be sure to only do this once or you'll end up with duplicates.

See the Course Copy Quick Reference Guide for full instructions.

#5 - The easy way to create tests in Blackboard!

If you contact IDD, we will send you a Word document with the correct format.  Type your True/False or Multiple Choice questions into the document and send it back to us.  We will upload the questions to your Blackboard course using Respondus.  Please send questions one week in advance of the quiz date.

What could take you hours to type directly into Blackboard, can be done in 5 minutes! We work with existing Word documents and publisher test banks. Please contact us, we can save you time! Email IDD.

Key formatting items:

  • Asterisk * placed in front of the correct response.Example Quiz Format

#4 - Too Many Courses in My Course List!

Are there TOO MANY courses on your course list in Blackboard? You can make access to courses easier by either hiding courses, or moving courses to the top of your list.  Use the little gear at the upper right of the My Courses panel to streamline your course list and make finding your current courses easier. See the Course Display Quick Reference guide for complete instructions.

Manage Courses Graphic

#3 - Attention Safe Assignment Users!

If you have existing Safe Assignments in your Blackboard courses, we recommend deleting them and re-inserting using the regular Assignment tool. See the Safe Assignment Quick Reference guide for complete instructions.

Safe Assign Icons

#2 - Test Taking Tip – Do not use FORCE COMPLETION!

We recommend using a Timer with Auto-Submit and NOT setting Force Completion. 

Here’s why….

  • Use the Set Timer in conjunction with Auto-Submit

When the Set Timer option is used in conjunction with Auto-Submit a timer appears when the student begins the test. The student is given a 5 minute warning and a 1 minute warning upon reaching the end of the set time.

If the student accidentally closes the browser, or loses the connection to the test, the student CAN access the course and test once their connectivity is resolved. The timer continues to record the time from the initial test entry. This results in less instructor intervention and less student frustration with the test.

Using the Auto-Submit feature is an added bonus because it will save and submit the student’s test when the time has lapsed. This alleviates issues with students not saving and submitting the test which causes the in-progress icon to appear in the grade center.

  • DO NOT use the Force Completion setting!

The Force Completion setting on Blackboard exams allows students to enter the test only one time.  If the student accidentally closes the browser, or loses the connection to the exam, the student cannot continue with the exam unless the instructor intervenes and resets the exam. For this reason, this setting is not recommended.

In addition, our Blackboard Support site has some Test Taking Tips that can ensure success on the student side:

Link to Student Support Resources - Look for Taking Tests

#1 - Emailing from the Grade Center

Did you know you can email students right from the Grade Center in Blackboard?  In addition to grades, the Grade Center shows the last date that students logged in and whether they have submitted assignments or not.  It is easy to send an email to students who have low grades or are late with assignments by selecting the check box next to their names in the Grade Center and choosing Email Selected Users

Grade Center Email graphic