Introducing Bb Annotate!

Later this month we will be upgrading myLesley’s inline grading tool from New Box View to the new and improved Bb Annotate! Bb Annotate will allow you to provide inline grading and feedback to your students’ assignment submissions.

When is the upgrade?

Bb Annotate will be rolling out on Monday, May 25th. There is no expected downtime – myLesley will be up and running the whole time.

What is Bb Annotate? How is this different from the current inline grading tool?

Bb Annotate is more robust than the current inline grading tool, New Box View. Bb Annotate contains many more features, including a sidebar panel, annotation tools (including a highlighter, freehand drawing tools, eraser, image or stamp, text box, shapes, and more) and commenting tools.

For an overview of the available features, watch the Bb Annotate Overview Video.

How will this be different for my students?

Students won’t notice much of a difference. Like the current tool, once you have graded your students’ assignments, they will be able to view, download, and print their annotated files but are not able to add annotations to their submissions. For the best experience, students will need to open their annotated PDFs in a native PDF viewer, such as Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to view annotations.

Which file types are supported?

Like the current inline grading tool, Bb Annotate supports the following file types:

  • Microsoft® Word (DOC, DOCX)
  • Microsoft® PowerPoint®(PPT, PPTX)
  • Microsoft® Excel®(XLS, XLSM, XLSX)
  • OpenOffice® Documents (ODS, ODT, ODP)
  • Digital Images (JPEG, JPG, PNG, TIF, TIFF, TGA, BMP)
  • Medical Images (DICOM, DICM, DCM)
  • PDF
  • PSD
  • RTF
  • TXT
  • WPD

What happens to my students’ old assignments? Do I need to do anything?

You do not need to do anything on your end. All content will be migrated over to Bb Annotate during the upgrade. Your students’ old assignments will be imported over and all of your previous annotations will remain intact.

Does this affect the whole Grade Center?

No. Bb Annotate is only available for student submissions via the Assignments tool. Your Grade Center will not be affected by the upgrade.

How do I learn more?

Online Training

Blackboard is offering free online trainings on May 12th and 14th as part of their ongoing webinar series. Find out more or register for a training: Blackboard Instructor Webinar Training Series.


Updates to Inline Grading in myLesley (New Box View)

In January 2018, New Box View became the new inline grading tool for grading Assignments in Blackboard. Since its launch Blackboard has been working with Box to continue to add features and improve performance.

Point and Highlight Annotations
To view point-based annotations and highlight-based annotations you only need to hover your mouse over the indicator. Previously, to view comments on point-based annotations you hovered the mouse over the annotation, whereas to view highlight-based annotations you clicked on the highlight. This was causing confusion since the annotations were accessed differently. This new update streamlines the process and eliminates the confusion.

Sticky Annotation Mode
In order to make it easier to add multiple annotations of the same type, New Box View now features a “sticky” mode, which will allow you to quickly and easily add multiple annotations without having to select the annotation type each time.

Coming Soon: Drawing Annotations
New Box View will soon allow you to add freehand drawings and annotations to submitted documents.

Edit 3/28/18: Drawing annotations are now available.

Coming Soon: Downloading Documents with Annotations
Currently, faculty and students are unable to download annotated documents. Blackboard recognizes the significance and importance of this functionality and are working to incorporate this feature. They are hoping to implement this feature in early June when they release version Q2 2018.

Feature Roadmap
Below is the New Box View Feature Roadmap, which details completed updates, updates in development, and updates being designed.
New Box View feature roadmap

More Information
For more information on these improved features, please see Inline Grading and New Box View Update: February 2018.

Edit 3/28/18: See the latest information  at Inline Grading and New Box View Update: March 2018.

For more information on grading in myLesley, including step-by-step instructions, please see Grading myLesley Assignments.