Instructors – tracking student activity

There are some known issues with the accuracy of Blackboard statistics from course and item tracking tools. Information about this is available on our blog.

There are 2 other options for tracking student access to files which you may find useful.

1. The first option allows students themselves to indicate that they have accessed an item, e.g. a file

The Performance Dashboard (in the Control Panel under Evaluation)  provides an overview of user activity. This can be used in conjunction with the Review Status function to track student access to items, e.g. files (Review status and the Performance Dashboard can also be used to track other activity).

To set this up, firstly  switch on review status for the item you wish to track, as follows:

  • find the item you wish to track
  • click on the double drop down menu to the right of the item name
  • click on Set review status, then Enable, and Submit

If you then turn edit mode off  it shows a tick box next to an item. Students can tick it to indicate that they have opened/read a document.  This has the potential advantage that it requires  a conscious action on the part of the student.  If you want to encourage students to engage with an item, then asking them to make a judgement that they have read and understood it might be more meaningful than a report which simply says that they have clicked on it.

Reporting on this is either through  the Performance Dashboard, or by clicking on User progress in the dropdown menu next to the item.

2. The second option automatically tracks user access to files through the Blackboard Content system.

You can switch this on as follows:

  1. Click on Control panel, then Content
  2. Click on the relevant content area e.g. the course ID
  3. Find the file
  4. Click on the dropdown options menu (double dropdown menu to the right of the filename)
  5. Click on Edit
  6. Under options tick Enable tracking then click Submit

To see tracking reports  follow the instructions 1 – 4 above but then choose 360 degree view and scroll down to Tracking data.