The sleeping students on blackboard are actually quite useful! Have you noticed the zzzzz_student in your Blackboard Grade Center. That student allows you to log in and see your blackboard course exactly as a student would. You can figure out how to post on a discussion board or upload documents to Safe Assign as a student. Technology Across the Curriculum has all the explanation you could need in their document on “Top Five Tips for Blackboard Users”. Here is a picture from their document. It links to the entire document. (Or come to my training on Friday.)
Michelle Scholz also blogged here a few months back about her tips and tricks. She included the zzzzz_student. She her other tricks here. What are some of your favorite blackboard tricks and tips?
I’ve posted before about technology and plagiarism. Well, for teachers at Oregon State University, a new Blackboard update has made it even easier to detect plagiarism. Our latest Blackboard upgrade came with “Safe Assign”. You will find this new feature under “Create Assessments”.
Students will submit papers through Safe Assign. Safe Assign then checks the internet and Safe Assign’s database of student papers. It will document what percentage of a student’s paper is unique. It won’t tell you if anything is plagiarized. (Ten percent of the paper could be from other sources, but that information may be correctly cited or simply common phrases.) Safe Assign will, however, help you track down any uncited sources in student papers. It can also show students that they have some questionable areas before they submit their papers. This way students can learn to document their sources correctly without being penalized. Safe Assign will also stop students from sharing old papers with friends as all papers run through Safe Assign are added to its database. I’ll be talking more about Safe Assign on Friday’s training, but this document from OSU’s Technology Across the Curriculum is a great resource. This is one of those pieces of technology that will help (and students) with very little time investment.
example_paper for training today from Read, Write, Think
Using the Test Student
Users and Groups > Users > Down chevron Change User’s Password > type your new password and confirm.
The username for this student is represented by bb_xyy_nnnnn.
Log in to see the student’s view of your Bb site.
Setting up Weighted Columns in Grade Center
You will first need to create categories that you will select for weighting your total column. For example, Presentations, reading assignments, tests etc.
Grade Center > Full Grade Center > Manage Categories > Create category > Fill in name and Description and then click Submit.
To make a weighted total column (or running total), use the categories outlined in your syllabus.
Grade Center > Full Grade Center > Create Calculated Column Weighted Column.
Fill in the column details and select the categories that you wish to include on the left and move these to the right hand side by clicking the “>” in the center.
Add the percentage in the * box on the right hand side. Click on the blue circle to weight the contents proportionally rather than equally.
You can decide if you want students to view this column or not and whether to include it in the grade calculations (obviously not for a running total column).
Click the blue Submit button.
Making an Attendance Sheet
Grade Center > Full Grade Center > Work Offline Download > Full Grade Center > Download
This will generate an Excel Spreadsheet that you can use to cut and paste names.
You can also see a list of names by choosing Tools > Roster Not Blank
The latter is not as easy to manipulate as cutting and pasting results in two very wide columns (you will need to go to Table > Convert > Convert table to text).
There is a huge amount of information and tutorials on making wikis, tests etc. to be found at this site.