Adding Columns

Any assessments that get created in Blackboard will automatically have a Grade Centre column associated with it. Blackboard does give you the capability to create stand alone columns. Marks that are from outside Blackboard then can be added to these new columns and used for students grades. There are five types of columns. Four of them are calculated:

  •     Assessment (Just called column in Blackboard)
  •     Average
  •     Minimum/Maximum
  •     Total
  •     Weighted


Same Fields in All of the Columns

All the columns have some elements that are the same. Below are the fields with discriptions that are used in all of the columns.

  • Column Name – Is the name of the column that students will see in “My Grades”
  • Grade Centre Name – If used, Grade Centre will use this as the name of the column (Good if column names are very long)
  • Description – Students see this description of the column (assessement)
  • Primary Display– The mark that will be seen by the student in “My Grades” and used in the Grade Centre. Note: Whatever is used as the displayed is used to enter the mark. If “percent” is used as the display then the score must be entered as a “percent”.
  • Secondary Display – Used only in the Grade Centre so another type of mark can be seen. An example would be “Primary” is score and secondary is “percent”.
  • Include this column in Grade Centre Calculations – If “yes” any calculated column will/can use this column
  • Show this Column to Students – If “yes” the column will show in “My Grades”
  • Show Statistics for Students – If “Yes” the stats of the column will be shown in “My Grades”.


Same Fields in Calculated Columns

Below is the field that is the same in the calculated columns

  • Calculate as Running Total – If yes, then the Calculated Column will only use columns that have scores. Columns without scores are ignored as though they do not exist. If the option is “no” then the columns with no values are included in the score but at a value of zero.


Unique Fields in the Columns

Below are the names of the columns with the fields that are unique to them.


Create Column (assessment column)

  • Category – can add the column into a category. Here is an explanation of Categories.
  • Points Possible – the mark for the assignment.
  • Associated Rubrics – If an rubric will be needed for the assignment.
  • Due Date – The date that the assignment is due. Used in “My Grades” and “Calendar”.


Create Average Column

Shows the Average score out of the columns that are selected.

  • Include in Average – allows you to select all columns, or categories, and or columns names to use in this column.


Create Minimum/Maximum Column

Shows the minimum or maximum score out of the columns that are selected.

  • Calculation Type – Minimum or Maximum.
  • Include in Minimum/Maximum – allows you to select all columns, or categories, and or columns names to use in this column.


Create Total Column

Shows the total score out of the columns that are selected. Can be used the same as the Average Column

  • Include in Average – allows you to select all columns, or categories, and or columns names to use in this column. 


Create Weighted Column

Shows a score using a weighted system of the columns that are selected.

  • Include in Weighted Grade – allows you to select categories and/or columns names to use in this column. Each category and/or column will have a weight associated with it. All the weights that are associated to the columns must add up to 100.


NOTE: If a student does not complete an assessment then it is best to place a zero in the column. Depending on how the option “Calculate a Running Total” is set in a calculated column, the calculated column may or may not include the completed assessment.


An Example

Below represents what would be seen when “Create Column” is selected. Using this example, it can be seen how the fields are organized and displayed. Creating a different column would be organized very similar, having some fields the same and having it’s own unique fields. 



Deleting a column

Any column that was created within the Grade Centre can be deleted. Using this option will remove it from the Grade Centre, from students “My Grades” if students could view the column, and have calculated columns re-calculate to new values.

A column that was created by Blackboard (tests, assignments) will not have the delete option. To delete this column, the test or assignment must be deleted within the course content.


More Information