The journals tool provides a personal space for you to communicate privately with your instructor. You can also use a journal as a self-reflective tool to post your opinions, ideas, and concerns about your course, or discuss and analyze course-related materials. For example, you can describe problems you faced and how you solved them. Your instructor may narrow the focus and list topics for discussion.

Your instructor can choose to make journal entries public, allowing all course members to view all entries. You can read what other students wrote and build on those ideas.

When used in the group area, members of a group can view and comment on each other's entries for a group journal. The group can communicate with their instructor as a whole and all members can benefit from the comments made.

Your instructor can grade group journals and apply the grade to every member of the course group. Journal entries can also be used specifically for communication. In either instance, you can make multiple entries for one journal topic.


Where to find journals

Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about accessing journals.

You can find journals on the course menu or on the Tools page. On the journals listing page, select the name of the journal topic you want to access. The journal topics appear in alphabetical order.


Journal topic page

The journal topic page is divided into two main sections: the content frame and the sidebar.

  1. Create Journal Entry and View Drafts: Create as many journal entries as you want. You can also access any entries you saved as drafts.
  2. Journal Instructions: Expand the section to view the journal instructions and any goals your instructor may have added. Your journal entries appear below the instructions in the content frame.
  3. Comment: Add your thoughts.
  4. Journal Details: In the sidebar, expand the section to view the journal information.
  5. Grade: This section appears if your instructor enabled grading for the journal. You can see if your journal entries have been graded.
  6. Index: View the titles of your selected entries for either the week or the month, determined by the settings your instructor makes during journal creation. The most recent entry title appears first.

Create a journal entry

Only your instructor can create a journal. After the journal is created, you can create journal entries.

  1. On the Journals listing page, select a journal title.
  2. On the journal's topic page, select Create Journal Entry.
  3. Type a title and entry.
  4. Select Browse My Computer to upload a file from your computer. You can also attach a file from the repository: Course Files or the Content Collection.

    -OR-

    Drag files from your computer to the "hot spot" in the Attach Files area. If your browser allows, you can also drag a folder of files. The files will upload individually. If the browser doesn't allow you to submit your assignment after you upload a folder, select Do not attach in the folder's row to remove it. You can drag the files individually and submit again.

    You won’t be able to drag files to upload if your institution uses an older version of Blackboard Learn.

    You can use the file name or provide another name for the file.

  5. Select Post Entry to submit the journal entry or select Save Entry as Draft to add the entry later.

Video: Create a Journal Entry


Watch a video about creating a journal entry

The following narrated video provides a visual and auditory representation of some of the information included on this page. For a detailed description of what is portrayed in the video, open the video on YouTube, navigate to More actions, and select Open transcript.


Video: Create a journal entry shows you how to create a journal entry in the original course view.


View journal drafts

If you saved a journal entry to edit later, select View Drafts on the journal topic page. Select the title of the entry to edit and post.


Comment on a journal entry

If allowed by your instructor, you can comment on journal entries. You can add a comment after your instructor comments on an entry to continue the conversation.

You can't make comments on another user's journal entry, even if the journal has been made public. Users can only comment on another user's entry when they are members of a group. For group journals, all group members and the instructor are allowed to make comments on individual entries.


Edit or delete a journal entry

Your instructor determines if you're allowed to edit or delete your journal entries. On the journal's topic page, open the entry's menu and select Edit or Delete. The delete action is final and irreversible.


View journal grades

After your instructor grades your journal entries, you can view your grade in two places. The grading information appears in the Grade section on the journal's topic page and in My Grades. You can also view your instructor's feedback and the date the grade was assigned. To learn more, see Grades.

Rubrics

If your instructor associated a rubric with the journal and made it available, select View Rubric to display grading criteria.


Troubleshooting

  • If your instructor deleted the journal while you're posting, the journal and all comments are deleted.
  • If your instructor makes a journal unavailable while you're posting, the journal remains visible to your instructor only.
  • If your instructor changes the Allow Users to Edit and Delete Entries setting, entries remain but you can't edit them.
  • If your instructor changes the Allow Users to Delete Comments setting, comments remain but you can't edit them.

ULTRA: About journals

A journal provides a personal space for you to communicate privately with your instructor. You can use a journal as a self-reflective tool to post your opinions, ideas, and concerns about your course. You can also discuss and analyze course-related materials. For example, you can describe the problems you faced and how you solved them. Your instructor may narrow the focus and list the topics for discussion.

Your instructor can grade your journal contributions or use them solely for communication. In either instance, you can make multiple entries in a journal.


ULTRA: Access journals

Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about accessing journals.

If your instructor added due dates, you can access graded journals from your Grades pages, the calendar, and the activity stream.

If the due date has passed for a graded journal, you’re alerted in the Important section of the activity stream.

More on late work

Course Content page

You can also find your journals on the Course Content page. An icon appears next to the title to indicate new activity.

Your instructor may also organize journals in folders and learning modules.

Your instructor may add release conditions before you can view a journal. For example, you may need to earn a certain grade on a test before you can open the journal.


ULTRA: Add journal entries and comments

On the journal page, your instructor typically provides a prompt with the instructions and files you need to begin.

You can create as many journal entries as you want. You can also comment on journal entries. You can add a comment after your instructor comments on an entry to continue the conversation.

If your instructor added a rubric for grading to a journal, you can view it before and after you start your submission. Select This item is graded with a rubric in the side panel to view the rubric.

If you want, you can view the rubric alongside the journal instructions. You can expand each rubric criterion to view the achievement levels and organize your efforts to meet the requirements of the graded work.

You can use the options in the editor to format the text and embed images and attach files. Only your instructor can view the content you add.

To use your keyboard to jump to the editor toolbar, press ALT + F10. On a Mac, press Fn + ALT + F10. Use the arrow keys to select an option, such as a numbered list.

As you type in the editor, the word count appears below the editor. After you save, the word count no longer appears.

More on the word count

New comments alerts

You're notified in the activity stream when new comments are made in your journal.

In your journal, the number of comments appears in a link below each entry. A "New" label appears with a count of new comments. Select the Show Comments link to open the comments section. Select the Hide Comments link to collapse the comments section.


ULTRA: Edit and delete entries and comments

Instructors can edit or delete anyone's entries and comments. You can edit or delete only your own entries and comments.

Open an entry or comment's menu to access the Edit and Delete functions. If you or your instructor delete an entry, all comments about the entry are also deleted.


ULTRA: Where are my journal grades?

Journal submissions aren't graded automatically. Your instructor must grade your work and post the grade.

As your instructor posts grades, you'll find them in your activity stream. Select View my grade to display your grade.

More on the activity stream

You can also access your graded submission on the Course Content page. Select the journal title to open the Details & Information panel. If your instructor used a rubric to grade your submission, select This item is graded with a rubric to open the rubric alongside the journal. At this time, your instructor can't add grades on the rubric but can use it as a reference.

Your grades also appear on the global and course grades pages.

More on accessing grades

More on grade pill colors