Submitting to a Blackboard Assignment – FAQs

Blackboard Assignment screenshot

Submitting work to a Blackboard Assignment is generally very straightforward:

  • Click on the Assignment title
  • Browse for the file or files you want to upload
  • Press Submit.

The procedure is shown in this Student’s guide to submitting assignments and viewing marks and feedback

This page explains how the system works if if you choose the Save Draft option, or where your lecturer has allowed you to make multiple attempts.

If you have to submit work to a Blackboard Assignment, and you’re confused by what you see on screen, check out these Blackboard Assignment screenshots to identify what has happened, and what you should do next.

Multiple Attempts

What is an Attempt?

An attempt is created when you press Submit on the Upload Assignment screen. This submits your assignment and Blackboard calls this an attempt.

Submitting multiple files to an assignment is not the same as making multiple attempts:

  • Unlike a Turnitin Assignment, you can submit more than one file to a Blackoard Assignment, as part of the same attempt.
  • You can submit different sorts of files – Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, JPEGs, MP3s, computer code – and these can be uploaded at the same time to make one attempt.
  • Each file will need to be added individually by clicking on ‘Browse My Computer’ on the Upload Assignment screen.
  • Regardless of how many files you upload, when you press Submit, this is an ‘Attempt’.

uploading multiple files

In general, if you are required to submit multiple files, you should upload and submit them all at once – when you submit an Attempt, that attempt should contain all the files which are to be marked.

If you want to upload a few files, then come back later to upload some more you should press Save Draft (see below) rather than Submit.

Am I allowed to make multiple attempts?

Blackboard doesn’t give you any indication to say whether an Assignment has been set up to accept multiple attempts.

If your lecturers have not made this explicit in the assignment instructions, please check the settings with them.

How do I make a second attempt?

Go back into the Assignment and click on the link to open it. You will see a screen called ‘Review Submission History’.

A preview of your assignment will be shown on the left (if you submitted a Word, PDF, PowerPoint or Excel file).

In the right hand panel under SUBMISSION you will see a list of the files you uploaded as part of your previous Attempt.

If you are allowed to make an additional Attempt, you will see Start New on the right-hand side of the screen.

Start a new attempt

Press Start New and then upload all of the files required for the assessment.

N.B. Make sure you upload all of the files that are required for your assignment in the new attempt, even if you are just editing one of the files.

Remember: each attempt should contain all of the files which are to be marked.

The staff member marking your work will only look at your final attempt, and if this only has some of the required files, you are liable to lose marks or even fail the assessment.


Draft submissions

Saving a Draft submission

When you go into a Blackboard Assignment on the Upload Assignment screen – even before you have uploaded any files – you will see three buttons Cancel, Save Draft and Submit:

Blackboard Assignments: Cancel, Save and Submit buttons

  • Cancel – press this button to leave the assignment without submitting any work
  • Submit – press this button when you are ready to submit your assignment file or files for your tutor to see.
  • Save Draft – press this button if you have uploaded files required for the assignment but want to come back to them later before finally submitting. This option will let you remove existing files, re-upload files or add files to your assignment.
IMPORTANT: Your tutor will not see or mark your assignment while it is saved as a draft – you must remember to return to this screen and press Submit.


Completing a Draft submission

When you Save a Draft, you will see the blue ‘Attempt in Progress’ icon: Attempt in Progress icon

The file(s) you have uploaded will not be visible to staff marking the assignment until you Submit the Attempt.

To do this, go back into the assignment, and click on Continue.

Blackboard Assignment Saved as Draft

You will then be able to

  • remove previously uploaded files
  • upload additional files

When done, you can Save Draft again. Or, if you have now uploaded all required files, press Submit.

How can I be sure that my work has been submitted?

After pressing the Submit button, you will see a green Success message at the top of the screen. This indicates you have submitted your work:

Blackboard Assignment: Submission complete

Any files you have submitted will be listed on the right of the screen under SUBMISSION.

Any of the following file types will display in the main part of the screen:

  • Word (DOC, DOCX)
  • PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX)
  • Excel (XLS, XLSX)
  • PDF (PDF)

You can go back into the Assignment at any point and view the file(s) you have submitted.

You will also receive an email receipt when you Submit to a Blackboard assignment.

The email receipt will be sent to your University email address, and will contain the following information:

  • a submission ID
  • the course title and ID
  • the assignment title
  • the title and ID of the Blackboard course
  • date and time of submission
  • details of the file(s) you submitted – file name and file size

Blackboard Assignment Submission Receipt

Please note:

  • Do not delete the email receipt – you should retain it as proof of submission.
  • This receipt only indicates that a submission has been made by you on the date and time shown, and received by Blackboard.
  • It is not confirmation that a file you have submitted is correct or has uploaded properly.
    Always go back to the assignment to check the files you have submitted – to make sure that they can be viewed or downloaded.
  • You will not receive a receipt if you Save as Draft. So, if you believe that you have submitted your work, but have not received an email receipt, do go back to the Blackboard assignment and complete the submission.

Help – what is the assignment screen showing me?

If you have to submit work to a Blackboard Assignment, and you’re confused by what you see on screen, check out these Blackboard Assignment screenshots to identify what has happened, and what you should do next.

Further help

To avoid problems when submitting work online, read Preparing for Online Submission: Checklist.

Further guidance, including a video tutorial, can be found on the Blackboard Help site.