Generating course reports
Course Reports (previously called Course Statistics) can help you assess students' participation and performance in your course. You can use Course Reports to check an individual or multiple students' usage to see if they are actively engaging with the course. Running Course Reports will give you graphed statistics which easily allow you to keep track of students' access to, and activity within, the course.
NOTE: Do not use the Performance Dashboard or Grade Center (under the Control Panel) to try to access this information; they gather data from different records, and pulling information from these sources is likely to result in discrepancies.
Running a Course Report
- To access Course Reports, go to the Control Panel and click Evaluation. Then click Course Reports.
- There are several different ways in which you can run Course Reports. Each provides a different look into how a student is using your course.
a. "All User Activity inside Content Areas": Presents data for each user on the number of hits each content area has received. You can use this data to:
i. Assess whether students who performed poorly on an assignment or test actually accessed the necessary course materials.
ii. Track which course areas were accessed most often and when they were viewed.
b. "User Activity in Forums": Gathers data for the number of posts each user has made in each discussion forum. You can watch a video tutorial on User Activity in Forums here. You can use this data to check which forums are most popular and are accessed frequently.
c. "User Activity in Groups": Presents data for the number of hits each group has received. You can watch a video tutorial on User Activity in Groups here. You can use this data to make sure all members of a group are participating in group activities.
d. "Overall Summary of User Activity": Presents the number of hits each Course area has received from each student. You can watch a video tutorial on running an Overall Summary of User Activity here. You can use this data to:
i. Check which pages are accessed, when they are accessed, and how frequently.
ii. Check course access for particular students.
- Choose which report you would like to run and click the chevron to the right of that option. Click Run.
- On the Run Reports page, under Step 2 (Report Specifications) select the format in which you would like to download the statistics. Using the drop down menu, you can choose from PDF, HTML, Excel, or a Word document.
You must select a Start Date and an End Date for gathering the data.
You can also select which users you would like to download data for. Ctrl-click to select particular students, or shift-click two separate students' names to select all the students in between.
NOTE: For the End Date, you must select the day following the last day for which you would like to collect data. In other words, if you want to collect the data from June 10, 2011--June 14, 2011, you would type June 15, 2011 for the End Date. (This is because the date in Blackboard rolls over at midnight, so collection for this group of statistics would actually close at 11:59 p.m., on June 14, 2011).
- Click Submit.
- After running the report, you will be redirected to a new page that confirms a "Successful Run." (A copy of the report may pop-up in a new window, if your browser is not set to block pop-ups).
Click one of the following options:
a. "Download Report": Use this option if you want to open the report in a new tab where you can save to your computer's hard drive.
b. "Run a new Report": Use this option to run another report with different criteria.
- Click OK to be redirected back to the Course Reports home page.
Interpreting a Course Report
The various types of Course Reports can be used to assess different aspects of students' performance. The reports contain several sections which reveal different statistics about student usage. Depending on which report you choose to run, your report will produce a combination of some of the following categories:
- The Access/Application portion of the report displays the number and percentage of hits to each course area or tool as well as a breakdown of hits by each user. When running different reports, the "Application" part of the title will be replaced by the type of report you ran, for instance, "Group," "Content," or "Forum." You can use this information to see if students are accessing the required components of your course.
- The Access/Date section contains a bar graph displaying the students' access during the date range you specified as well as tables with a breakdown of hits for each student. This section can help you spot trends in the course.
- The Access/Hour of the Day section shows the number and percentage of hits for each hour of the day both graphically and numerically. This will show you the time of day that the course receives the most access. This may be a good time to set up a chat session or similar online, group activity. It may make sense to update your course at the times when it is accessed the least frequently.
- The Access/Day of the Week portion shows the number and percentage of hits for each day of the week. This information may be helpful in scheduling online office hours or informing students when you release new assignments or tests.