Many instructors use attendance data as part of their students' overall grades. Also, some institutions and programs have attendance policies that require instructors to track the number of class meetings students have missed.

Attendance data is also used in these ways:

  • International students who must maintain visas may need to meet attendance requirements.
  • Institutions may need to prove “seat time” for federal funding or accreditation.
  • Many institutions and instructors use attendance as they focus on student retention.

For each class meeting, instructors can mark whether a student is present, late, absent, or excused. The attendance records for each student appear in a single column next to other grades. On the Attendance page, profile pictures appear so instructors can easily identify students.

Instructors can use attendance as part of calculating grades just as they can for an assignment grade column.

More on the instructor workflow


Enable attendance

You can enable/disable attendance from the Admin Panel > Tools and Utilities > Tools > Attendance.

Attendance is disabled by default for the Original experience.

Attendance is powered by a building block bundled with Blackboard Learn. To disable attendance at your institution so it doesn't appear as an option in courses, first disable the course tool as instructed above. Then, go to Admin Panel > Building Blocks > Installed Tools and find Attendance in the list. In the building block's menu, select Set Unavailable.

More on how to manage building blocks


Regional attendance support

The attendance feature is available in regions where Blackboard has AWS data centers, with the exception of the gov cloud and China regions. Clients in a region where SaaS is available have access to attendance, whether or not they’re on SaaS.


Export attendance data

You can export attendance data from Learn courses and import it into your SIS.

In the Overall view, select the Export icon to download a CSV file with the attendance records. The download begins immediately without a confirmation.


Attendance date in course archives

Attendance data is included with other student data in course archives.