Blackboard Assignments – New Box Viewer – technical information

Supported Filetypes

The new Box viewer supports a greater range of files – for instance most image and video files can now be viewed directly inside Blackboard.

Not all files which can be viewed in Blackboard support highlighting / annotations, however.

This list of supported filetypes shows which files can be viewed, and which annotated.

Please note that, at present, there are a few common file types – notably Excel and RTF files – which it is not possible to annotate directly in Blackboard.

Box, the third party company which provides the viewing/marking interface, are making constant improvements to their service, so additional functionality is being added on an ongoing basis – and Blackboard are working with Box to see that desired improvements are delivered as early as possible. Blackboard have also emphasised that Box provides

  • support for significantly more file types, including audio, video, and image formats
  • more responsive browser support for accessing documents on any device across mobile browsers 
  • a more modern, cleaner UI that more seamlessly blends with Blackboard Learn

Additionally, Box is one of the world’s largest SaaS-based content management services, and as a result the New Box View service includes compliance with the strictest security and compliance standards.  


Data held in Box

Blackboard Inline Grading and Box


What has happened to feedback previously provided using Crocodoc?

The most important thing to know is that all feedback left using Crocodoc (the previous marking interface) is still available after the move to Box.

The feedback will continue to be visible – to both staff and students – within Blackboard, and when the marked paper is downloaded as a PDF.

Please note however that, now we have moved to Box, annotations made using Crocodoc are “burnt in”, and cannot be edited or deleted.

Annotations added using Crocodoc, after the transition to Box

Annotations added using Crocodoc, after the transition to Box

Annotations added using Crocodoc, downloaded as a PDF, after the transition to Box

Annotations added using Crocodoc, downloaded as a PDF, after the transition to Box


Third party cookies

Third party cookies need to be enabled in your internet browser in order for the New Box Viewer to load.

If third party cookies are disabled in your browser, you will see a blank page and the submitted document will never fully load inside the Box viewer. The following solution is as provided by Blackboard.


Some browsers (such as Safari) disable the use of 3rd-party by default but allow users to enable the use of cookies on a per-site or all at once. Users may follow these steps to allow Box’s cookies to be stored on their device and prevent this issue from occurring:

  1. Browser Settings or Preferences > Privacy
  2. Select “Always allow” (or similar)
  3. Refresh the page with the viewer on it
  4. Return to Browser Settings or Preferences and revert to the default of “Allow from websites I visit” (or similar)

If 3rd-party cookies must be disabled, some browsers allow for domain exceptions to be added. Please Allow [*.] (Chrome) or (Firefox). Please see browser and New Box View documentation for further instructions.