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Instructors can use in-line grading for assignments that students submit if the document is a Word (DOC, DOCX), PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX), Excel (XLS, XLSX), or PDF (PDF) document. 

You create an assignment that can be graded inline as you create any assignment, but after you have received assignments from students you can now:

  • Review and comment directly in the document. 
  • Zoom the contents of the document in or out, open the annotation tools menu to comment in the document, download the document and move from page to page.
  • Grade the submission from the inline grading sidebar. From here you can view the assignment details, the grading rubric and each attempt. You can type an overall grade and grades for each attempt as well as provide feedback to your students without leaving the page.

If you would like to use this feature, be sure that students know which are the convertable file types. See Blackboard’s guide for Assignment Inline Grading for more information on supported files types.

Supported Formats

When you view a document submitted through an Assignment, that document is converted to a format that is viewable inside a web browser. Supported document types that can be converted are Word (DOC, DOCX), PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX), Excel (XLS, XLSX), and PDF (PDF). Annotations are supported on these files types: PDF, PPT, PPTX, DOC, and DOCX. Point-based annotations are also available on AI, BMP, DCM, EPS, GIF, PNG, PS, PSD, SVS, TGA, TIF, and TIFF files types. 

The converted document is displayed in a viewer on the Grade Assignment page. Formatting and embedded images of the original document are preserved in the conversion.

The viewer is supported on current versions of Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Internet Explorer. No plug-in or other application is necessary.

If a student has uploaded a file that isn't in a format supported by the inline viewer, then instead of seeing the viewer, you are prompted to download the file in question.

Inline Assignment Grading and Box

The inline viewer is powered by a third-party, cloud-based technology called Box.

Student file submissions are stored in your Learn instance, as always. A copy of the submission is transmitted to the Box cloud service for conversion. The converted version of the document lives in the cloud on servers managed by Box.

No personally identifiable data about students is sent to Box. Learn retrieves a document ID from Box and assigns it to the document. That mapping of Document ID to user, course, assignment, and attempt is tracked locally in Learn. None of that data is available to Box. All that is transmitted to Box is the file for conversion. The converted file is stored in the Box service, as are any annotations made on the converted file. 

View How to Annotate with Inline Grading for further instructions.

Icon Table

Draw on the document.

Add comments to the document.


Assignment Inline Grading


For questions or comments, contact the Computer Services Help Desk