Creating Course Groups in Blackboard


Blackboard Groups allow you to implement team-based learning in your courses. Users within the same group have their own group workspace within Blackboard to submit assignments and access group-specific tools. Students can be added to groups manually, enroll themselves, or be randomly assigned to groups.

Batch importing students to groups requires two key steps: Preparing the CSV file and uploading the CSV file to the Blackboard course. See → How do I batch create groups with a CSV file in a Blackboard course? After groups are created, you can add the students to the groups. See → How do I batch import students into groups?

Tell Me

If you are teaching an ORIGINAL course

  1. Go to Control Panel → Users and Groups → Groups.

  2. To create groups, mouse over Create:

    OPTION 1: Create a single group - choose an option from the Single Group section.
    OPTION 2: Create multiple groups at once - choose an option from the Groups Sets section.

  3. Select the enrollment option for your group(s):

    1. Manual enrollment involves the Instructor selecting each member one at a time from a list of all the students in the Course.

    2. Random Enrollment is best suited for multiple groups, where the Instructor allows the system to divide up all the members of the Course among all the groups based on criteria chosen by the Instructor.

    3. Self Enrollment allows the students themselves to become members of groups by using Sign-Up Sheets that Instructors create for each Course Group.

  4. Type a Name and optional Description on the Create Group page.

  5. Select Yes to make the Group Available or select Sign-up Sheet Only.

  6. Select the Tools available to the Group by selecting the appropriate check boxes.

  7. Select the Grade option and type Points possible for Blogs, Journals, and Wikis, if student submissions will be graded.

  8. Select the checkbox for Allow Personalization to allow individual Group members to add Personal Modules to their Group Homepage.

  9. Depending upon enrollment type:

    1. For Self-Enrollment, select the Sign-Up Options, including titling the Sign-up Sheet.

    2. For Random Enrollment, add values for:

      Determine Number of Groups by number of students or number of groups
      Determine How to Enroll any Remaining Members

    3. For Manual Enrollment, in the Membership section, select the students from the Items to Select box and click the right-pointing arrow to add the selected names to the Selected Items box.

  10. Select the Maximum Number of Members.

  11. Click SUBMIT.


If you are teaching an ULTRA course
  1. Select Course Groups from the Details & Actions menu on the left.

  2. Create a single group or click New Group Set or Import Group Set from top right.

  3. Add students to groups.

Custom (manually assign)

  1. Select Custom.

  2. Enter a name at the top of the page.

  3. Select each student's name one after the other to select them as a group.

    1. Select a student's name again to remove the selection.

  4. After you select the students, open the menu next to one of their names and select Create a new group. You can also move multiple students to a group listed in the menu.

  5. Edit the group name if you want to change the default naming.

  6. Optionally, provide a group description that also appears to members of that group. You have no limit on the number of characters.

  7. Select the plus sign wherever you want to add another group OR repeat steps 2-5.

Randomly assign

NOTE: You need at least four students to randomly assign students to at least two groups.

  1. Select Randomly assign and provide a name at the top of the page.

  2. In the Number of groups menu, select how many groups to create. You need to create at least two. Students are equally assigned to the number of groups you choose.

  3. To remove all students from the current group set, select Unassign All at the top of the page.

  4. NOTE: The menu option changes to Custom if you move students to different groups after they're grouped and before you save.


CSV file import

Reuse Groups (select existing groups for an activity/assessment)

  1. Select a title from the Reuse groups section. Groups with no members also appear in the list.

  2. Provide a name at the top of the page.

  3. Edit the individual group names

  4. Add optional group descriptions that are shown to group members.