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Group Separate Sections for Email, Special Course Content and/or Grading:

To share particular information with separate course sections of students in a Master/Child course, you'll need to create Groups for each section in Blackboard. Use these steps to automate the process:

Note: Announcements and email sent via the Announcements feature will be visible to students in all of the merged sections. Use the Send Email tool and groups if you want to target announcements to specific course sections only.

Note: Master courses with more than 700 students need special treatment - contact Instructional Services (ITS) for help creating the groups.

Create a Group Enrollment File: (eliminates manually enrolling students in each group)

  1. In the Master course, open the full Grade Center | click Work Offline | Download


  2. Download the Grade Center data to Excel - Select the User Information Only option
  3. In Excel, delete all of the columns except for the username and Child Course ID
  4. Move the Child Course ID column to the left so it's the 1st column
  5. Save the file as a CSV file and close the workbook

Create a Groups File: (eliminates manually creating a group for each course section)

  1. Save this CSV template file to your computer, then open it in Excel
  2. Fill in the following values for your course:

    1. Group Code (matches the "Child Course ID" values in the Group Enrollment file)
    2. Title - Friendlier title for each group
    3. Available - Set to Y for all rows
    4. Self Enroll - Set to N for all rows

  3. When finished, it should look similar to this with all columns intact:


  4. Save it again as a CSV file and close the workbook

Import the two CSV files into Blackboard Groups:

  1. In the Master course, click Users and Groups | Groups
  2. Click Import and Browse My Computer to attach the Group Enrollment CSV file
  3. Click Browse My Computer to attach the Groups CSV file
  4. Click Submit

Within a short time, your groups should appear with the students enrolled in each group by section. Use these groups to email individual sections by choosing the Single/Select Groups option on the Send Email page. Course content and/or assignments can be made available to students in individual sections through the use of Adaptive Release settings. Tests can be made available to selected sections through the use of Test Availability Exceptions in the Test Options.

Create Grade Center Smart Views for each created group:

  1. In the Master course, click Users and Groups | Groups
  2. Check the box to the left of the "Name" column header so each group is checked
  3. Highlight Bulk Actions at the top or bottom of the list | click Create Smart View for Groups

Mark the group Smart Views as "Favorites" (so they show up in the Grade Center menu as shortcuts)

  1. Open the full Grade Center | highlight Manage | choose Smart Views
  2. Check the box to the left of the "Title" column so each group is checked
  3. Highlight Favorites at the top of bottom of the list | click Add to Favorites

Use the Smart Views to filter the Grade Center display to selected course sections

This is too much to follow - Help!

If you do not want to attempt this on your own, please contact Instructional Services (ITS) for help. Email: ndsu.instructional.services@ndsu.edu


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North Dakota State University
IT Help Desk Phone: +1 (701) 231-8685
Administrative Calls Only: +1 (701) 231-7961 / Fax: (701) 231-8541
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Last Updated: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 2:01:15 PM
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