To eliminate double entry of Grade Center data in several tools, instructors can do offline grading, and then import grades into Grade Center.

Instructors can upload grades from external sources such as an Excel spreadsheet (.xls) or a Comma-separated Value (.csv) file. Data must be formatted very specifically to upload correctly and be synchronized with existing Grade Center data.

Uploading Grades

  1. Prepare an upload file. You may have received one from the Assessment Resource Center with scantron test scores. This file should upload properly as is. If you are creating a new file we strongly suggest that you do this by downloading the user information from the Grade Center as described below, then add the columns or change the grades as you wish. (Note: the username column must be in the file; however, it does not require usernames to be in parentheses as in earlier versions.)
  2. Save the file either as Comma Separated Values (.csv) or Tab-delimited (.txt.).
  3. In the Grade Center, hover over the Work Offline button and select Upload.
  4. Browse for the file on your computer.
    • Choose the Delimiter Type. In most cases, this may be left on Auto, but in some cases, Blackboard may need to be told if the delimiter is Comma or Tab.
  5. Click Submit.

  6. Each column to be uploaded will appear as a separate row in the list of Uploading Column (See, Fig. 1).
  7. Uncheck the box in the upload column for any grades you do not want to upload. The Match and Grade Center Columns will have values only if the column is being uploaded to an existing column. This allows you to see if the columns are matching up as expected.
  8. The Data Preview gives a comma-delimited list of the scores being uploaded. This should give you a general sense as to whether or not the correct data is being uploaded. The first value in the list should correspond to the value in the first row of the spreadsheet being uploaded, etc.
  9. Messages indicate the success or failure of the operation. If an error message appears, read the error message closely. In most cases, it will state the cause of the problem.

    Fig. 1, uploading grades

  10. Click the Submit button. If there are problems, click Cancel and fix any errors in the spreadsheet before attempting to upload again.
    Note: The column will automatically format to text. To use it in any grade center calculations you will need to change the Primary Display to Score in the Edit Column Information menu.
  11. If the upload created a new column, it will be necessary to use Edit Column Information to edit the Primary Display, Category, and Points Possible.
Important Note: Columns are identified by auto generated serial numbers, and not by column names. Consequently, any column that is uploaded without a serial number will create a new column. It will not update an existing column.

There are two simple ways to set up a spreadsheet for uploading into existing columns.

The first is to download the Grade Center and enter the grades into the appropriate columns. When saved as .csv, this file will become the upload file.

The second method is to:

  1. Download a copy of the Grade Center and open it in Excel.
  2. Locate and copy the cell(s) containing the column heading(s) and serial number(s).
  3. Paste into the corresponding cells in the spreadsheet being prepared for uploading.
  4. Save the file as a .csv.

Downloading Grades

  1. In the Grade Center, choose Download from the Work Offline menu.
  2. Choose the information you wish to download in the Select Data to Download section.
    1. Select Full Grade Center if you wish to download everything (See, Fig. 2).
    2. If you wish to download all data associated with a grading period,
      1. click the button next to Selected Grading Period, then
      2. choose the desired period from the drop-down menu to the right.
    3. To download only one data column (together with the user information columns),
      1. click the button next to Selected Column, then
      2. choose the desired column from the drop-down menu to the right,
      3. and (optionally) check the Include comments for this column box to download comments as well as scores.
    4. To download only the basic user information (including the date of the last access), select User Information Only.
    5. Choose the Delimiter type. Generally it is best to set this to "Tab".
  3. Decide if you wish to download hidden columns and hidden users.

    Fig. 2, downloading grades

  4. Click the Submit button.
  5. Click Download on the next screen. Save or open the file on your computer.

Work Offline - Uploading and Downloading Grades