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A feature in Blackboard called Goals allows faculty and departments to collect information for accreditation or other purposes as to how programs and curriculum aligns with course goals.


Faculty can align course content and assessments (eg. discussion forums and threads, blogs, journals, tests and individual questions, assignments, and Grade Center columns) to one or multiple goals.

Reports can then be run that display how students are performing in alignment with the associated course or department goals.


Many reasons cause departments to seek continuous quality improvement in program and course curricula. In the School of Computing and Information Systems at GVSU, there is a need to effectively support accreditation requirements as well as to focus on the improvement of the student experience. To this end, the department designed an assessment plan that involves all faculty around the following claims:

  1. We know what we do
  2. We do it well
  3. We can prove it


A number of assessment tools can be used in collecting data and evidence in the improvement program such as:

  • Senior exit survey
  • Focus Groups
  • Internship supervisor survey
  • Comprehensive exit exam (standardized or local)
  • Student portfolios evaluated by committee
  • Faculty self-reflection about each course
  • External evaluators of student performance
  • Performance criteria within each course


As part of the program faculty collect samples of student work. This may include making copies of each assignment and exam with representation for student high, average, and low performance. The criteria for student performance should be measurable, defined by observable behavior, and identifying a specific standard (or minimum standard).

The Blackboard Goals feature allows instructors to mark assessments or content in Blackboard Learn courses as performance criteria to reach a curriculum goal. While the curriculum goal does not have to be the same as a course learning objective, they often overlap. In turn, Blackboard Learn collects student scores and compares them to set target performance level and average range. This helps in identifying students who meet expectations or are outside of them.


The resulting Blackboard course performance report summarizes how students met the expected performance criteria against one or more set goals. The course itself can be archived or copied to retain assessment artifacts and assignment samples. The report is granular enough to provide a breakdown of academic performance per student on each assessment and curriculum goal. The following sample reports come from Introduction to Computing, CIS 150.





Overall, the Goals feature in Blackboard Learn is a very useful tool for collecting academic data and including it in a larger, final report submitted for each course, which includes faculty reflections, student evaluation samples, assessment of previous adjustments, and proposed changes for the future.


Thanks to Eric Kunnen for his ongoing support of key instructional projects.


How to Run a Goals Report - YouTube

Original post at GVSU


Thanks Chris Bray for the Blackboard Learn Goals XML Generator!


Here are the details:

Generates XML files that can be imported into Blackboard Learn for use with Goals, based on the documentation at



Example Files:


Bb Grader Announcement

Posted by eschramke Jan 25, 2019

Effective March 29, 2019 the Blackboard BbGrader App will no longer be supported.   

Bb Grader will be removed from the Apple App Store and support will cease to service on March 29th, 2019 in all markets.  This discontinuation furthers the progress we’ve made across our product portfolio to simplify, consolidate, and promote our next generation solutions. 


As a part of our commitment to delivering a portfolio of high-quality products to help our clients thrive in a complex and changing educational environment, we’ve planned a robust roadmap that continues to build upon the grading capabilities already available in Blackboard Instructor to provide instructors the best classroom experience while on the go.


To learn more about grading in the Blackboard Instructor app, please visit


Calling All System Admins!

Posted by stolleb Jan 24, 2019

Have your say in the evolution of the System Admin Panel in Blackboard Learn Ultra!


As part of our continued commitment to research, design and iteration in Learn Ultra, we want to hear more about how you currently use the Administrator Tools page in Learn. What features do you use? What works well--or doesn't? What would you change? We'd appreciate your input, even if you don't currently use the Ultra experience.


Help shape the tools you use to deliver and support Blackboard Learn at your institution by filling out this survey: Blackboard Admin Panel Survey (The survey should take approximately 10 minutes to complete.)


Thanks for helping inform the future of Blackboard!