A shared online tool for posting individual entries. Typically used to allow students to share information in a more conversational forum. A shorthand term that means Web logs, blogs are personal, group, or course online writings that are frequently updated and intended for consumption by all course members.

In Blackboard Learn, only enrolled users can view and author blogs.

In Blackboard Learn, Blogs consist of two elements:

  1. Blog entries:
    • Text, images, links, multimedia, Mashups, and attachments added by Course members open for comments.
    • Remarks or responses to Blog entries made by other Course members, including the Instructor.


An Instructor can choose to allow students to participate in Blogs in three ways:

  • Course Blogs: Only the Instructor can create a Course Blog and determines the topic to be addressed. All Course members can add Blog entries and add comments to Blog entries.
  • Individual Blogs: Only the Instructor can create a Blog for individual Course members to use. Only the owner of the Blog is able to add Blog entries. All other Course members can view and add comments.
  • Group Blogs: If the Instructor enables the Blogs tool for the Group, all Group members can add Blog entries and make comments on Blog entries, building upon one another. Any Course member can view Group Blogs, but can only add comments. A Group Blog is different from a threaded discussion as each entry does not need to continue the discussion of the previous entry, but can be a complete thought on its own.

*The Instructor can edit and delete entries in any of the three Blog types and delete user comments.

What’s the difference between Individual, Group, and Course Blogs?

Individual to all students = Entries and grades are separate for each student. To view an individual entry, you click on the student’s name.

Course = All student entries are listed together when posting to and viewing the blog, and all students get the same grade.

Group = All entries made by students within the group are listed together when posting to and viewing the blog, and all students within the group get the same grade.

Additional Information

Using Blogs

Grading Blogs


A personal space for students to communicate privately with the instructor.A shared online diary for use in class. Typically used for student reflection or summary as access is limited to the student and instructor.

  • Students can use journals as a self-reflective tool to post their opinions, ideas, and concerns about the course, or discuss and analyze course related materials.
  • Journals are ideal for individual projects – the owner of each journal creates entries and the instructor can add comments.  The student can also comment on his or her entries to continue the conversation with the instructor.
  • Journals can be used as a graded assignment or ungraded to gather opinions and information.
  • Instructors can create one or more journals for use by students in their courses. Journal topics must be created before students can add their entries.

Students cannot see indexes, so if a journal is active for more than one week, index it monthly.

When is a journal not private?

Permit course users to view journal = the journal will not be private, making it more like a blog with commenting turned off.

Additional Information

Using Journals

Grading Journals