The teacher posts syllabus and grades.

Syllabus Access in Blackboard: It is important to make a syllabus accessible to students, so that they can refer to it often and stay informed about current class activities. While instructors may wish to provide a paper copy so they can review the syllabus in class together, posting the document in Blackboard ensures students have access. In addition, the YSU Academic Senate passed a resolution endorsing a policy for faculty to post their syllabus in Blackboard (or other LMS) in April 2019; you can add your syllabus to Blackboard Ultra or Original.  Visit this page for more information on syllabus construction and content.

Post grades in Blackboard: It is important that a student be able to monitor how they are doing in a course. Though some may say that students should be collecting their grades and tracking it themselves; however, unless this is an actual learning goal for the course it can act as an additional burden that takes student attention away from where you want it—on your course learning goals. In addition, you can make your life easier by posting grades in Blackboard, which will reduce the emails from students asking what their grades are!   The most consistent way for students to be able to access their grades is by posting them in Blackboard. Adding assignments or tests in Blackboard can benefit you by reducing the papers you have to collect, and puts your grading tasks in one location – no more worrying about misplacing or losing a gradebook! If you have assignments that do not lend themselves to online collection, you can also manually add grades to a Blackboard gradebook. Finally, you can configure Blackboard to calculate your total points or weighted total—in addition to the linked resources, Cyberlearning can be a great training and support resource in configuring your course to enable online grade posting. (Note that all Blackboard links in this paragraph are for Bb Ultra; for Bb Original assistance contact Cyberlearning)

Student Success and Posting Grades: In addition to the literature pointing to the benefits of low-stakes assignments in postsecondary education, designing assignments in your course early in the semester (e.g., within the first two weeks or so) benefits students, and you, in several ways. First, assignments assigned and graded early in the semester provide students a chance to be successful in the course, which builds confidence and a sense of self-efficacy (Kuh et al., 2006). In addition, it provides you as the instructor a sense of student engagement, and potentially, a sense of the students’ level of knowledge regarding your course content. Students who are not attending class or completing assignments early in the semester should be immediately reported through the CRM Advise Faculty Academic Alert System. For a short guide on how to use the early alert system, click here or for training, check the IT Training Calendar.

Providing Timely Feedback: Providing prompt feedback is one of the most powerful teaching and learning methods available to you as an instructor (Chickering & Gamson, 1987; Hattie, 2009 as cited in Nilson, 2016).  The simplest form of feedback is grades on assignments. Posting grades promptly ensures that students know where they stand in a course and, if needed, have the time to make corrections to their level of engagement and/or seek assistance with the course. Note that “promptly” doesn’t necessarily meet immediate (though with Blackboard you can actually create auto-graded assignments—see here or contact Cyberlearning for more info). You should decide what is a reasonable grading “turnaround” time and communicate that information to students (commonly done in your syllabus).  

Feedback Best Practices: More than grades, use of effective feedback provides ways for students to learn and improve. Visit this page for additional information on best practices in providing feedback.