Step 9: Assignments


A part of most courses, the assignment section is where you will complete your assigned work.

Submitting assignments via Blackboard is more secure and efficient than via email. But not all assignments in the classroom are set up in Blackboard.

  • It is up to your instructor to set up assignments in Blackboard. If they haven't done so, you won't see assignments listed there.

  • To access assignments, go to the navigation menu on the left-hand side and click on Assignments.

  • You will also want to review the Plagiarism Tutorial if you have not. It is now included in the SOWK 690 Incoming Student Prerequisites course.

  • Did you know you can download and install recent versions of Microsoft Office apps like Word, Excel and Powerpoint for both Mac and PC for free via your Umaryland Office 365 account? See how here to be sure you have newer versions of this software for most compatibility.


The IDEA Team often receives calls for help for assignments due to students using Safari or other browsers other than Google Chrome. It is important to use Google Chrome to ensure you have all the functionality you should, and also, it makes it far easier for us to support all the students and faculty when everyone uses Google Chrome. For more information, review Step 2.

To complete the (optional) assignment in the Blackboard Orientation in your SOWK 690 course, click on "Upload a document Assignment".

To attach your assignment, click on Browse Local Files. Locate your document and click Submit.
Note: you can also now click "Browse Cloud Service" to upload directly from Google Drive, OneDrive or Dropbox.


Grading Assignments

There are different ways that some instructors grade your assignments.

    • In some cases, the instructor may download your paper, insert comments or use Track Changes, and then upload your commented paper, along with a grade.

    • In other cases, the instructor may use a rubric, built into Blackboard to grade the paper.

    • It is also possible for instructors to insert comments within Blackboard, using what is called Inline Grading, using the Blackboard Annotate tool in the Grade Center.

    • Your best bet to see comments and feedback from your instructor is to click on My Grades or My (Student) Grades - and click on the item in the gradebook or click View Rubric, or click the blue word bubble icon to see general comments.

    • You should then see your files, paper and/or inserted comments from the instructor.

    • If the instructor uses the inline grading tool within Blackboard, the inserted comments have a yellow icon that you will see within your paper as you scroll through it.

    • If, for some reason, the instructor has inserted comments but NOT provided a numeric grade, this will prevent you from seeing the inserted comments.

    • Contact your instructor if this is the case.


Blackboard has its own internal "inline" assignment grading tool, called Annotate, that allows instructors to add comments and use annotation tools on top of your assignment, within Blackboard (as opposed to downloading and using Track Changes). However, this tool creates a converted version of your uploaded document. If you upload a Word Document (.DOCX), there is a good chance that this conversion will change the pagination of your document. In other words, rather than 7 pages, it might be 8, and the breaks between pages might be entirely different. There may also be other aspects that look slightly different.

If you really want an exact copy, you should first do a "Save as.." and save your Word document as a PDF formatted file, then upload that PDF, rather than the Word document. This will preserve the overall look and pagination of your document in both Blackboard's Annotate tool and for download. HOWEVER, please note that some faculty DO use Track Changes, and prefer to have a Word document submitted. So be sure to check with your faculty member on their preferences first.

Viewing Assignment Feedback and Grades

Once your work has been submitted and graded by your instructor, as long as the instructor has set the assignment to be available to you in the Grade Center, you will see the results in your My Grades section in Blackboard.

    1. Select My Grades (or could be "My (Student) Grades") from the left navigation in Blackboard.

You may also see your results once graded by your instructor by clicking on the Assignment item - which will show your score (if available) and comments in the right panel.

If you submitted multiple attempts, you can also click on the dropdown arrow to view the results from each attempt, including comments or annotations from your instructor.

Safe Assign

If your instructor enabled SafeAssign prior to students uploading, your paper will run through an anti-plagiarism detection system and provide the instructor a score. If the instructor enabled students to see their own report, you will see the SafeAssign "report in progress" message after uploading your document to the assignment dropbox. SafeAssign can take up to minutes or hours to process, depending on how many instructors/students are running papers through it and how long the papers are. During busy times such as mid-terms and finals, you would want to check back the next day or even two. Yes, many papers to process!

Once processing is complete, you can view the score and Originality Report from either My Grades or on the paper submission page.

You can practice this and see how it works in the SOWK 690 Bb orientation section, with the Optional Paper Upload Assignment.

1. Click the Assignment/Exam/Item hyperlink that you wish to see feedback on from the list of deliverables.

If your instructor graded using a rubric and it is shown to students, you can also click View Rubric from this page to see those results. And if you click the blue "word bubble" icon to the left of the score on the right, you can view general comments on the assignment from the instructor. But for a deeper look at actual annotations, or assignment markup in your paper document, see Step 2.

2. By clicking the name of the assignment, you can view all of the Assignment Details. You can review any annotations, comments, grades, rubrics and files, all from this page. In the upper center are icons for printing and downloading the paper with instructor feedback. Click the download arrow to download the marked-up version with instructor feedback for your review. In the far right are the "Assignment Details" where you can see your grade, view a scored rubric (if your instructor used one and shares that with you), download your original paper or download the paper with instructor feedback.

To view the rubric (if there is one) click the small table icon to the right of the Attempt date and time and to the left of your score. Click the file name to download the original file you submitted ( in the right column under Submission.) The Comments section will display any overall general comments on the assignment from your instructor. Any link under “Comments” and “Feedback to Learner” is one your instructor uploaded with additional comments.


    1. Go to the (optional) assignment link in the SOWK 690 Course (in the Blackboard Orientation tab), upload a document, and submit an assignment.

    2. After you completed exercise 9, please go to Step 10.