Grade Center – Columns

Videos: Creating Columns in the Grade Center
Vendor Documentation: Creating and Managing Grade Center Columns

Columns: Auto-Created vs. Manually Created

Blackboard’s Grade Center is, essentially, a table of columns and rows. The rows display your Users and the columns display information about Users, as well as any areas of your course that can be graded. Some of the columns in the Grade Center are there by default, and some automatically appear when you create certain activities within your Course Content.

Default Columns

The default columns in any newly create Blackboard course are: Last Name, First Name, Student ID, Last Access and Availability.


Auto-Generated Columns

Auto-Generated Columns in Blackboard appear in your Grade Center once you have created the following types of graded activities:

Assessments: Test, Survey, Assignment, Self and Peer Assessment, Turnitin Assignment

Tools: Graded Discussion, Graded Blog, Graded Wiki, Graded Journal

Any points you assign when first setting up these activities will be associated with the auto-generated column in your Grade Center.

Manually Created Columns

If you need to record other learning activities in Blackboard that are not associated with any of the activities above, then you can manually create columns to record scores. For instance, if you want to record “Participation” grades in your Blackboard course, you can manually create a column titled “Participation” and then, at the end of the semester, record the scores.

You may also elect to manually create columns for Tests, Quizzes, Assignments, etc., if you do not use Blackboard to deliver those types of assignments to your students.

To create a column:

  1. Access your course’s Grade Center.
  2. Click Create Column in the Action Bar.
  3. Type a Column Name. Note: This field accepts only 15 characters.
  4. OPTIONAL: Type a Grade Center Display Name. This appears as the column header in the Grade Center and is good for displaying a shorter name for your assignment so that the column in the Grade Center does not take up a lot of width. This field accepts only 15 characters in the column header.
  5. OPTIONAL: Type a Description of the column.
  6. Select a Primary Display option from the drop-down list. The default choice is Score.
  7. Select a Secondary Display from the drop-down list. This selection displays the secondary format for this Grade Item just for those who can view the Grade Center.
  8. Select a Category from the drop-down list. This associates the column to a Category. The default choice is No Category.
  9. Set the Due Date. Select from the following: (a) None: there is no due date for the Grade Item, or, (b) Specify a due date for the Grade Item, including month, day, and year.
  10. Type the Points Possible. Denote the number of points assigned to this column. Only numeric entries are accepted.
  11. Set additional Options for the column by selecting Yes or No for the following:
    1. to include the Column in Grade Center Calculations: The column is included in the possible selections of items when creating Calculated Columns, such as Weighted Grades Columns or Total Point Columns,
    2. choose whether or not to show this Column to Students: Grades are shown in My Grades, View Grades, and the Report Card module when available,
    3. choose whether or not to show Statistics (average and mean) for this column in My Grades: Includes statistical information with the grade value when shown to students.
  12. Click Submit.

Your new column is ready.

To edit a column:

  1. While in the Full Grade Center, click on the option chevrons for the column you wish to edit.
  3. Make your edits.
  4. Click SUBMIT to record your edits.

To delete a column:

  1. While in the Full Grade Center, click on the option chevrons for the column you wish to delete.
  2. Choose DELETE from the options.

Columns that cannot be deleted:

  • Course default columns, including Last Name, First Name, Username, Student ID, Last Access, Availability (some of these may be hidden, however).
  • Auto-Created Columns, including those created when you set up a graded discussion, graded blog, graded wiki, test, assignment, Turnitin assignment, or other graded activity.

To hide/unhide a column:

  1. While in the Full Grade Center, click on the option chevrons for the column you wish to hide.
  3. To unhide, select COLUMN ORGANIZATION from Managed menu.
  4. Select a column that is hidden, then choose SHOW SELECTED COLUMNS from Show/Hide menu.
  5. Click SUBMIT to record your edits.


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