Content | Navigation |

What's Inline Grading?

Inline grading allows instructors to view and add feedback to students' assignment files directly within the grading interface without downloading or modifying the content of the document.

The previous Crocodoc service was discontinued by the vendor on January 15, 2018. Blackboard replaced Crocodoc with the “New Box View” service in assignments so that inline grading functionality remains available to instructors.

What are the benefits?

  • New Box View supports a wider range of file formats than Crocodoc – including images, text files, audio and video, and more!
  • Attached assignment files can now be printed directly from the assignment grading interface.
  • Improved rendering fidelity so files display more accurately in the viewer.

If you have questions or need assistance with using the New Box View inline grading functions, contact Learning and Applied Innovation staff at ndsu.instructional.services@ndsu.edu .

New Box View recent enhancements and changes

Effective 5/21/18: The way users view comments on annotations has changed from on-hover to on-click:

  • To see "point-type" comments, click on the blue point icon to open the comment. The comment stays open until a user clicks elsewhere.
  • To see "highlighted" comments, click on the highlighted text. The comment stays open until a user clicks elsewhere.

The Drawing Tool: Click the "Drawing annotation mode" button in the top-right corner of the New Box page to enter drawing mode - use the mouse pointer to draw directly on the document. Multiple annotations can be drawn in sequence while in drawing mode:

  1. Click Save to save the annotation or Delete to delete it and start over.
  2. Click the Undo or Redo arrows to undo or redo the last change made.
  3. Click Done to exit drawing mode.

"Sticky" Annotation Mode: Instructors can now add multiple annotations in sequence without having to scroll back to the top of the page and click the point annotation mode button again for each annotation:

  1. Click the point annotation mode button in the top-right corner of the New Box screen.
  2. Click in the document where you want the comment to appear > type the comment text > click Post.
  3. Click in the document away from the comment box to collapse it.
  4. Click in another location and repeat to add other comments or click and drag to highlight text and/or add comments to highlighted text.
  5. Click Close to exit point annotation mode.
Coming Soon - New Box View improvements and changes
  • Blackboard is working with Box to give both instructors and students the ability to download documents containing annotations created in New Box View by the start of fall semester classes. Annotations made with the New Box View tool currently do not display in the downloaded PDF file and will not be printed.
  • Summary View: Box has confirmed that they are in active development of the "summary view" (Box may use the term "sidebar element") which will allow users to recognize that annotations exist in multiple locations within a document and navigate to those annotations easily.  The timeframe for availability of this feature is currently expected between July and September.

    ITS will provide up-to-date information about improvements and enhancements to New Box View here as soon as they become available.

Important assignment/inline grading tips!

If assignment files don't display immediately in the grading window:

You may see this Download box, but the conversion timer never changes. Click the browser's Refresh or Reload button to display the file immediately!
Wait time displayed/Download file box

  • Students expect to see their attached file displayed in the assignment viewer immediately after they click Submit - instead, the Download box appears and will not disappear until they Refresh the browser. The assignment submission is successful even if the file is not displayed in the assignment viewer.

  • Instructors expect to see the student's submitted files in the assignment viewer immediately on opening the assignment for grading - click Refresh or Reload to force the file to render in the viewer immediately.

DO NOT hide annotated assignment Grade Center columns from student view - if an assignment column IS hidden from student view in My Grades, students also cannot see any comments or annotations in New Box View when they click on their submitted assignment in a course content area! Annotations are visible to instructors in this case, but not to students!

How to use New Box View (video tutorial)
  • Original formatting and embedded images are preserved. If a student has uploaded an unsupported file, you're prompted to download it.

  • Annotation sessions expire after one hour, but you'll receive a warning message before the session expires. After the time limit, annotations may not be saved. Need more time? Select Save Draft to save your work and continue later. Your text and files are saved on the page. When you return, you can resume working.

  • Student file submissions are stored in your Blackboard Learn instance, as always. A copy of the submission is transmitted to the New Box View cloud service for conversion. The converted version of the document lives in the cloud on servers managed by New Box View.

  • When assignments are submitted, students’ usernames and user IDs are sent to New Box View for attribution and submission ownership information only. No grades, first or last name, email, or other information is shared with Box. Only the files in native format are transmitted to New Box View for conversion.

What do students see? After you grade assignments, students can view their scores on their My Grades pages. They can also select the assignment in the course to review their submissions, your feedback, and their score.

Viewing annotations in New Box View
Annotations made in New Box View:

Annotations in New Box View are visible in New Box View to both instructors and students, and instructors are able to edit them, but the process for viewing the annotations is different:

Effective 5/21/18: The way users view comments on annotations changed from on-hover to on-click:

  • If the attached file(s) does/do not appear immediately and a download button with a wait time listed appears instead: click the browser's Refresh or Reload button to refresh the display immediately.
  • To see "point-type" comments (see #1 below) click on the blue point icon to open the comment. The comment stays open until users click elsewhere.
  • To see "highlighted" comments (see #2 below) click on the highlighted text. The comment stays open until users click elsewhere.

    • Note: Only 1 comment can be displayed at a time.

  • If a rubric has been used to grade work, access the rubric and/or scores as previously (see #3 below).
  • Additional feedback can be added in the feedback pane on the right as previously (see #4 below).
  • Copies of the assignment can be downloaded and/or printed from this screen (see #5 below).

    • Note: Annotations will not appear in either printed or downloaded documents at this time. Blackboard is working with the New Box View vendor to add this ability by the start of fall semester classes.

Older annotations made in Crocodoc:

  • Annotations made using Crocodoc (annotations made before 12/31/17) are still visible in New Box View to both students and instructors, but instructors will not be able to edit them.

    Example screen shots of Crocodoc annotations viewed in New Box View:

  • Strikethrough text, highlighted text, drawings and added text boxes will display the same as they did in Crocodoc.
  • These markup types will appear different than they did in Crocodoc:

    • Area comments will display with a red box around text (see #1 above) - hover the mouse within the red box to see the comment.
    • Point comments display a red, shield-shaped pointer (see #2 above) - hover the mouse over the red pointer to display the comment. If the comment doesn't show immediately, move the mouse cursor around within the red pointer.
    • Highlighted text with attached comments will appear as highlighted text, (see #3 above) - hover the mouse over the highlighted text to display a comment, if present.

If the comment boxes disappear off the edge of the screen, try one of these steps:

  • Hide the feedback pane on the right by clicking the collapse/expand button in the top-right corner (see #1 below)
  • Download the document by clicking the download button (see #2 below)
  • Zoom your browser screen in or out



Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

Follow NDSU
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • RSS
  • Google Maps

North Dakota State University
IT Help Desk Phone: +1 (701) 231-8685
Administrative Calls Only: +1 (701) 231-7961 / Fax: (701) 231-8541
Campus address: Quentin Burdick Building 206
Physical/delivery address: 1320 Albrecht Blvd, Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 4510 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: Information Technology Services

Last Updated: Tuesday, May 22, 2018 4:34:05 PM
Privacy Statement