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Blackboard 9.x Essential Training for Instructors
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Creating categories


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Blackboard 9.x Essential Training for Instructors

with Patrick Crispen

Video: Creating categories

To view a list of Blackboard's default Grade Center categories, open your Grade Center and then go to Manage and then Categories. In the last movie, we showed you how to assign columns to a grading period. It's a great way to organize your content. In this movie, we're going to show you how to assign categories to those columns and you can have a column that is both a grading period and a category. This is helpful if you want to automatically drop a student's lowest score. Say I have four quizzes and I want to drop the lowest quiz score.
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  1. 7m 51s
    1. Welcome
      1m 9s
    2. Using the exercise files
      35s
    3. What is an LMS?
      4m 15s
    4. Understanding Blackboard 9.X versions and campus customizations
      1m 52s
  2. 28m 38s
    1. The new graphical user interface
      5m 53s
    2. Exploring course-to-course navigation
      2m 20s
    3. Using course themes
      2m 15s
    4. Looking at course structures and the Quick Setup Guide
      6m 56s
    5. Using new and improved assessments
      7m 24s
    6. Looking at temporary obstacles and workarounds
      2m 36s
    7. Finding more Blackboard information
      1m 14s
  3. 26m 27s
    1. Logging in to Blackboard
      2m 9s
    2. Accessing your course and uploading files
      5m 40s
    3. Creating announcements
      4m 15s
    4. Sending emails
      4m 57s
    5. Viewing your roster
      3m 50s
    6. Downloading the Grade Center
      3m 17s
    7. Setting course availability
      2m 19s
  4. 14m 9s
    1. Understanding the tabs and sub-tabs
      5m 51s
    2. Working with modules
      3m 25s
    3. Personalizing the My Institution page
      1m 40s
    4. Editing the My Courses module
      3m 13s
  5. 12m 38s
    1. Understanding the course layout and breadcrumbs
      5m 13s
    2. Toggling the Edit Mode
      1m 26s
    3. Hiding and unhiding the Course Menu
      1m 9s
    4. Touring the Control Panel
      4m 50s
  6. 23m 53s
    1. Renaming, reorganizing, and deleting
      4m 58s
    2. Adding new menu items
      6m 4s
    3. Managing tools
      3m 40s
    4. Customizing a course
      9m 11s
  7. 16m 17s
    1. Viewing the course roster
      4m 55s
    2. Enrolling students and others
      7m 31s
    3. Why not to unenroll
      3m 51s
  8. 53m 34s
    1. Organizing content into folders
      5m 24s
    2. Uploading files
      11m 49s
    3. Using the Text Editor
      6m 19s
    4. Inserting a multimedia file
      9m 56s
    5. Linking to an external web resource
      4m 25s
    6. Linking to an internal course file
      6m 3s
    7. Making content available to students
      2m 2s
    8. Using the Content Collection
      3m 35s
    9. Copying and moving content
      4m 1s
  9. 24m 24s
    1. Exploring how students view course grades
      4m 1s
    2. Optimizing the Grade Center
      1m 36s
    3. Changing the default letter grading schema
      4m 24s
    4. Creating score columns
      6m 37s
    5. Entering grades
      5m 19s
    6. Viewing grade histories
      2m 27s
  10. 56m 19s
    1. Creating text columns
      3m 1s
    2. Managing columns
      4m 52s
    3. Creating grading periods
      5m 34s
    4. Creating categories
      5m 42s
    5. Dropping scores in the Grade Center
      9m 3s
    6. Weighting grades in the Grade Center
      6m 4s
    7. Downloading grades and editing in Excel
      7m 51s
    8. Uploading student grades
      4m 29s
    9. Changing grades
      3m 37s
    10. Changing a final grade
      6m 6s
  11. 16m 26s
    1. Creating assignments
      6m 22s
    2. Downloading assignments
      5m 16s
    3. Grading assignments
      4m 48s
  12. 37m 51s
    1. Best practices for using online assessments
      4m 21s
    2. Creating an empty test and choosing the Question Settings
      5m 29s
    3. Creating multiple choice questions
      7m 57s
    4. Creating true/false questions
      2m 48s
    5. Creating essay or short answer questions
      4m 5s
    6. Creating fill-in-the-blanks questions
      3m 39s
    7. Creating opinion scale/Likert questions
      5m 51s
    8. Reusing questions
      3m 41s
  13. 30m 28s
    1. Setting test availability and deploying the test
      13m 13s
    2. Assisting students with common testing obstacles
      8m 16s
    3. Viewing the student results
      6m 40s
    4. Reviewing the differences between surveys and tests
      2m 19s
  14. 16m 43s
    1. Sending emails
      6m 20s
    2. Creating announcements
      7m 14s
    3. Using the Course Calendar
      3m 9s
  15. 33m 15s
    1. Creating discussion forums and threads
      13m 1s
    2. Facilitating discussions
      9m 32s
    3. Moderating forums
      3m 36s
    4. Rating posts
      2m 47s
    5. Grading discussions
      4m 19s
  16. 9m 2s
    1. Creating groups
      7m 57s
    2. Adding members to groups
      1m 5s
  17. 4m 32s
    1. Next steps
      4m 32s

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Blackboard 9.x Essential Training for Instructors
6h 52m Beginner Jun 30, 2011 Updated Oct 09, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, Patrick Crispen teaches the ins and outs of Blackboard 9 so that educators and trainers can get up to speed in the system quickly—even if they've never used Blackboard before. The course explores customizing a course site, managing users, and adding and organizing content, including multimedia. It also shows how to perform student assessments in the Grade Center, as well as how to communicate with students and encourage participation and collaboration.

Topics include:
  • Accessing a course
  • Creating announcements
  • Viewing the roster
  • Working with modules
  • Adding new menu items
  • Enrolling students and others
  • Making content available to students
  • Entering grades
  • Downloading and editing grades in Excel
  • Creating assignments and collecting papers
  • Creating online tests
  • Adding discussion forums and groups
Subjects:
Elearning Teacher Tools Education Educational Technology Higher Education LMS
Software:
Blackboard
Author:
Patrick Crispen

Creating categories

To view a list of Blackboard's default Grade Center categories, open your Grade Center and then go to Manage and then Categories. In the last movie, we showed you how to assign columns to a grading period. It's a great way to organize your content. In this movie, we're going to show you how to assign categories to those columns and you can have a column that is both a grading period and a category. This is helpful if you want to automatically drop a student's lowest score. Say I have four quizzes and I want to drop the lowest quiz score.

I need to tell Blackboard what are quizzes or I want to drop the lowest test score. I've got to say this is a test. So what we are going to do is we are going to get into Manage and go into Categories. If you want to, you can create your own. In Blackboard 9.0 or 9.1 it's actually really simple. We are going to create a category. In this case I am going to create one called Classroom Participation.

That lovely 10% column that we all have in our grade books. I can go back and edit anything that I've added. I can also delete anything I've added, although I can't edit or delete the default categories. So if you don't like the names of these, just ignore them and create your own categories. So, now that we've got these categories, let's go and start using them. Let's go and tell Blackboard's Grade Center which particular score columns belong in which categories. There are two ways to do this.

One is you can do it when you create the column. In this case we've created a classroom participation category, but we don't have a column for that yet, so let me create that. We are going to type in Class Part. I am not going to type the whole participation. Remember you want to keep your column names to be between less than 13-14 characters. So class participation. I am just going to do Class Part. Scroll down, do a score. In this case I'll make it worth 100 points.

And here's where we get the interesting part. I can now categorize it when I create it and notice that my new category shows up here on the page. So we've got the built-in categories, but we've got my category that I just created. I am going to click on Classroom Participation. Scroll down. Does it count? Yes. Do I want the students to see it? Yes. Do I want statistics? Nope. click on Submit. So that's one way to go and categorize a particular column.

You could also go click on the button with the two downward facing chevrons to the right of a particular column. Edit the column information for an existing column and then scroll down and categorize it there, but there's a much quicker way. Let me get back into the Grade Center. I am going to go to Manage. I am going to go back to Column Organization. So Column Organization not only allows you to move things around on the page. For example, I've got my Preferred Name showing up here. I might want to try to drag this up here. Let's see what happens.

So now it's at the top of the First Half. It's the first thing that shows up. Notice that I can't drag the columns from the First Half or the grades up to the user information. Even if it's something that I created, and in this case just did it. I'm able to drag Preferred Name up to the User Information because it's not a graded category. It's a text category. So it's going to be sticking up there. In fact I am going to put it actually next to the First Name and Last Name.

So I've got the ability to reorganize. Remember I haven't made any changes yet. Changes have not been saved. I have to click on Submit to save the changes. But let's go down here and start categorizing things. So I want to take my term papers. I've got four of them. So I've got two of them in the first half, two of them currently not in any grading period. And I want to change these from being basically no category to some other category. So let me actually go to the top or the bottom. I am going down to the bottom to do this, and I am going to change the category and now I can re-categorize that.

These are assignments. So I am going to click on Assignment, and it's made the changes. Again the changes haven't been saved yet. I am going to click on Quiz 1, Quiz 2, Quiz 3, Quiz 4. I am going to change those categories to Test. So I've now changed all four term papers from no category to Assignments. I've changed the quizzes to Tests. I am going to go and click on Submit. Now you are not going to notice anything different here.

Categories only show up when you want to start dropping and weighting grades. We'll do that in the next couple of movies. But to sum up, if you want to you can use Blackboard's default categories. There are some built-in, four in Blackboard 9, 9 in Blackboard 9.1. Just go to the Grade Center > Manage and then Categories. You can create your own categories. Then when you're ready to go assign a column to a category, you can do it when you create the column or you can better still go to Manage > Column Information and do it that way.

Once you've set up the categories and you've assigned the columns you are ready to drop scores and add weight and we'll start talking about that in the next movie.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Blackboard 9.x Essential Training for Instructors.


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Q: This course was updated on 10/09/2012. What changed?
A: This update adds 7 new movies in the "What's New in Blackboard 9.x SP8 and SP9," on topics such as course themes, new and improved assessments, and other new features found in service packs 8 and 9.
 
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