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Taking Attendance In Blackboard

Blackboard now has an Attendance tool that can be used to mark students as present, late, absent, or excused for a class session or time period. A column is automatically generated in the Grade Center which can be used in the calculation of final grades. By default, the attendance total is set to 100 points possible and “Include in Grade Center Calculations” is set to “Yes.”

Enabling Attendance in Your Course 

The Attendance tool must be added and set up in the course before attendance is entered. To begin: 
1. Access Course Tools from the Control Panel and click the Attendance option. 
Enable Attendance in your course 
2. This will bring up the Attendance Setting screen. You can change the default settings for the grade display and for the Late option in the grading schema. 
3. Save your settings when done.
Create schema and save settings
4. Access your Grade Center to verify that an Attendance column has been added. 
Attendance Column in the Grade Center 
Note: This column provides an overall attendance score and can be used in the final grade calculation.

Setting Up Class Meeting Dates for Attendance 

If you would like to set up your attendance meeting dates in advance, you can do so through the Attendance tool. To do this: 
1. Access the Attendance tool from the Control Panel as you did above. 
2. Click the Overall button on the right side of the screen.
Click the overall button to setup meetings 
3. Position your mouse pointer to the right of the last column in the table. The edge of the column will change color and a Plus Sign (+) will appear. Click the Plus Sign (+). This will duplicate the column.
Click the plus sign to duplicate the column 
4. Set the date for the newly duplicated column by clicking on the link to its name (Today) and selecting “Edit Meeting” and clicking on a date in the future from the calendar that appears.
5. Continue this process for all dates you would like to track attendance.
Attendance menu pointing out edit meeting link 
Note: If you add a date that is prior to today’s date, the columns will re-order the next time you access the Attendance tool.

Marking Attendance 

In the Overall view, you can also mark attendance, view attendance history, and access class summary statistics. Before beginning to mark attendance, however, it is very important that you have set up the Grading Schema the way you want it. Specifically, the “Late” status for attendance must be assigned the percentage that you have decided on. It becomes problematic when a change is made in this percentage after students have already been marked with the Attendance tool. After verifying that your Attendance setup is complete and you are ready to mark attendance for a student: 
1. Click the Mark link for the student on the date for which you are entering attendance and select the appropriate option.

Mark students  present, late, or absent
2. You can also mark all students as present, late, absent, or excused by clicking on the date and selecting the corresponding option. 
3. To change a previously entered attendance status for a particular student, click on the mark and select the new option.
Mark all students present
As you enter attendance for students, you should see the Attendance grade update in the Grade Center. This column can be used in Grade Center calculations the same as any other gradable item in Blackboard.
Note: The attendance grades displayed in the Grade Center are Read Only. You must go back to the Attendance tool to edit attendance for your students.



What Does the Student See?

If the attendance grade has been made visible to students, they can view it in the MyGrades area of the course. Attendance will appear as a row in the list of graded items. To see the detail of their attendance, a student would need to click on the word “Attendance” to bring up their history.
My Grades Student View of Attendance

The student will see a report that displays a summary and detailed history of their attendance in the course as well as their Overall Score.
Student Overall Score
For additional information about Blackboard Attendance, visit Blackboard's Help website. For additional UHD Blackboard Support, visit