Extra Credit Options in Blackboard

Adding Extra Credit to Assessments

In order to make an extra credit question on an assessment that is not yet available:

1.Select the icon to the right of the assessment title to open the Action Menu.

2. Select the “Edit the Test” option from the Action Menu.

3. Locate the question you wish to set as extra credit.


4. Select the points value in the upper-right corner of the question window in order to open the Points dialogue.

5. If you do not see the Extra Credit checkbox in the Points dialogue

a. Select the Question Settings button in the upper-right corner.

b. In the Scoring section of the Test Question Settings page, ensure the checkbox for “Provide option to assign questions as extra credit” is checked.

6. Check the box to set the question as Extra Credit

7. Select the Submit button in the Points container.

8. Repeat steps 3-6 for each question you wish to make extra credit.

9. Click on the OK button in the lower right corner of the assessment editing interface in order to save the changes.

If a test already has Attempts, it is not recommended to change the questions settings (e.g., for extra credit, number of points a question is worth); it may corrupt the gradebook entry for that assessment. Instead, create a new assessment with the same questions, end the availability of the previous version of the text, and manually copy the grades over for those students who have already taken the assessment.

Adding Extra Credit to the Blackboard Grade Center

If you do not use weighted grading…

If your Blackboard course site’s gradebook does not use weighted grading, you may add Extra Credit to your course grading that is not incorporated into a specific assessment, such as for class participation, assignments which are wholly extra credit, or for other services rendered, by:

1.Navigate to the Full Grade Center in the Course Management Menu

2. Select the “Create Column” bottom in the top navigation bar

3. Enter the column name as “Extra Credit” or a similar term related to its intended usage. The full description is optional, but may be helpful to others who have access to the gradebook, such as Teaching Assistants or Instructional Designers.

4. Set the Primary Display value to “Score” – setting it to “Percentage” could cause errors in Blackboard, while setting it to “Complete/Incomplete” could prevent the intended extra credit function from behaving properly. Leave the Secondary Display option as “None”

5. If you are using Categories in organizing your Blackboard course site Grade Center, which you may if you have a large number of columns (25+), select an appropriate category for this column; if you are not currently making use of Categories, be sure to leave the Category setting as “No Category”

6. Set the Points Possible as 0; this is required to prevent this column from being automatically included as part of the Total Points Possible for the Grade Center.

7. Leave the Dates section blank. In the Options section, set the first two options to “Yes” and the last option to your personal preference.

8. Click on the Submit button.

9. If you do not receive a Success message about the column creation, verify as to whether the column has appeared in the gradebook and then contact your school’s Blackboard Support for assistance.

10. Now that you have a column which will not be included in the Total Points Possible grade calculation, you can manually enter the value of the extra credit total into this column to have it added to the student’s grade as extra credit.

Note: If you are not seeing the amount manually entered in this Extra Credit column added to the Total column in the gradebook, follow these steps:

1.Locate the column for the total points in the gradebook; it may be named differently.

2. Left-click the icon to the right of the column title to open the Action Menu.

3. Select the “Edit Column Information” option from the Action Menu

4. On the “Edit Total Column” page scroll to the “Select Columns” section.

5. Change the Include in Total setting to “Selected Columns and Categories”

6. Select all those columns you wish to include in the grade calculation from the Columns to Select box, holding down the Ctrl button to highlight multiple items, and then left-click the > button to move them to the Selected Columns box. Repeat for the categories you wish to include using the Categories to Select box.

7. Click on the Submit button.

If you use weighted grading…

In the event that you are using weighted grading, you have a few possible methods to add an Extra Credit column to your gradebook:

  1. By modifying other columns’ weights
    1. Follow the directions above to create an Extra Credit column, except set the Points Possible to 1.
    2. Select the “Edit Column Information” option from the Weighted Total column’s Action Menu.
    3. Modify the weights of other columns to accommodate this additional 1% calculation in the total.

    4. Give every student 1 point in this Extra Credit Column.

    5. Increase this base value by the number of extra credit points a student has received.
  2. Without modifying any other columns’ weights
    1. Follow the directions above to create a separate Extra Credit column for each extra credit opportunity you will offer students, except set the Points Possible to 0.001.
    2. Follow the directions Method A to change the weighted totals, except set the Percentages for each of the Extra Credit columns to 0.001.
    3. You may receive a warning message that your total does not add up to 100%, however this may be safely ignored in this situation.
    4. Enter the number of extra credit points a student receives into each Extra Credit column as appropriate.
  3. Manually add the number of extra credit points into the score listed in an existing column that is flat-weighted (e.g. a 5-point assignment which is worth 5% of the total), such as one might use for Class Participation or a small assignment. Blackboard users at other schools have reported most success using the first method.