Using the Assignments Tool in Courses

What Does It Do?

The Assignments tool allows you to administer student assignments online. Faculty can collect, download, grade, comment on, and return an assignment to students via the Courses interface.

How You Can Use It

  • Collect individual or group assignments online
  • Provide detailed feedback to students, including text or file attachments
  • Leverage peer review or anonymous grading options to meet your assessment goals
  • Link Assignments to Gradebook to calculate overall course grades


  1. Click the tab for your course or project site in your Favorites bar, or click the "Sites" menu at the top right and click the desired course.
  2. Click "Assignments" in the left menu.
  3. Click "Add" to add a new assignment.
    • Fill in the assignment title in the "Title" box.
    • Select the "Open Date": Students cannot view or submit an assignment until after the open date.
    • Set a "Due Date" when the assignment is due.  
    • Set the "Accept Until" date. This allows late submissions and is highly recommended to save your inbox from last-minute attempts. Late submissions are tagged as late
    • Select the "Student Submissions" type to determine how students are allowed to submit their assignments. If using Turnitin, please select "Single Uploaded File only."
    • Select the type of "Grade Scale" for this assignment. If you plan to link with the Gradebook, you must select "Points" and then enter the appropriate value in the "maximum possible" field.

  4. In the "Assignment Instructions" box enter any instructions students need to know about the assignment. The more detail, the better. For example, if you expect Microsoft Word documents as file attachments, be sure to specify this requirement. We also recommend repeating the deadline for added emphasis.
    assignment instructions
  5. Under "Grading," decide if you want to link grades to the Gradebook. Select "Add Assignment to Gradebook," if desired.
    • TIP: If you haven't created your Gradebook categories yet, be sure to set up your Gradebook before adding assignments. You'll save yourself a lot of time!
    • Remember, you must select "Points" as the "Grade Scale" in the earlier steps to add an assignment to the Gradebook.
  6. (Optional) consider additional features. Explore the built-in help by clicking the "Help" link at the top right of the tool to explore other features.
  7. Click "Post" at the bottom of the page to publish the assignment.

Grade an Assignment

  1. In your class site, click "Assignments" in the left tool menu.
  2. Click "Grade" beneath the specific assignment title.
  3. To view an individual student's work and grade it, click the student's name in the list.
    • Review the student's submission.  You can leave text comments, upload a document, and grade the assignment.
  4. Choose either "Save and Don't Release to Student" (to save your changes but not show the student the grade yet) or "Save and Release to Student" (to save your changes and allow the student to view your feedback). Any unsaved comments or information will be lost if you navigate away from the page without saving first.
  5. Click "Return to List" and the individual student's status will change to "Graded." If you did not already return the grade, click "Release Grades" when ready so that students may view their grades and feedback. Verify that the grades are viewable by the check mark listed in the "Release" column next for each name.

See Also

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