Instructor Support for Educational Systems

How do I assess an assignment with inline feedback?

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Please note that this article is only about using Brightspace's Annotation Tools. If you are looking for information on Turnitin's inline feedback with Feedbackstudio/Grademark please see here

Brightspace offers built-in Annotations Tools in Assignment to assess submission with inline feedback with free hand drawing, highlighting, text and note annotation. This allows you to assess submissions directly in Assignments, without using external tools like Turnitin. 

NB: it is NOT possible to download inline feedback using the Annotations Tools in bulk.

1. How to enable Annotation Tools for assessment?

When creating/editing an assignment enable the Annotation Tools in the Evaluation & Feedback tab.

2. How to assess with inline feedback?

Watch the video on using annotations for inline feedback in the Assignments tool on the bottom of this page.

  • Navigate to Course Tools in the navbar of your course.
  • Click on Assignments.
  • Click on the desired assignment.
  • Click on a submission file to open the screen below.
  1. Go back to Submissions in case you want to stop assessment.
  2. Navigate between submissions of this specific assignment.
  3. Please see here for more information on Evaluation and Feedback.
  4. This is the annotation toolbar for inline feedback.
  1. Click to open the Sidebar to display page thumbnails, bookmarks or outlines.
  2. Navigate to a certain page.
  3. Click to adjust page mode, transition and rotation.
  4. Click to select pan mode.
  5. Click to zoom in, zoom out or to fit page to screen. 
  6. These are all the annotation tools. Please see next section for more details.
  7. Click to print submission file.
  8. Click to Search in Document.
  9. Click to download submission file.
  10. Click to enter Full Screen mode.

3. Which annotation tools are available for inline feedback?

The following tools are provided in the annotation toolbar:

3.1. Quick text mark up
  • Select the text you want to mark up.
  • You can now highlight, strikethrough or underline the statement.

By selecting the mark up you are able change the colour, opacity and the blend mode.

3.2. Freehand Drawing

Using the pen tool, you can draw anywhere on a document, move, resize, and change colour, thickness, and opacity.

3.3. Text Annotation

You can add text anywhere in a document. This text can then be moved and resized. You can also change the font and colour.

3.4. Note Annotation

You can add longer comments, which can be collapsed or expanded, to a document. Change appearance with a variety of shapes and colors.


4. How to make the inline feedback visible for students?

After you are done with inline feedback you can either save the feedback as draft or publish it right away. Just like you would publish the grade + short feedback.

Annotations remain editable until the feedback is published by you. If you want to add additional feedback after publishing, you can update the annotations and re-publish them.

4.1. Where can students see the inline feedback on their submissions?

Inline feedback is visible for students in the submission file via Course Tools > Assignments after you have published the feedback

Feedback given in the right toolbar is visible for students in both Assignments & Grades.

When should I use Annotation Tools for an assessment?

You can use Annotation Tools INSTEAD of Turntin Feedbackstudio/Grademark. Therefore you should at least enable and use annotation tools when you are not using Turnitin for your assignment. 

We strongly recommend not to use both Turntin Feedbackstudio/Grademark and Annotation Tools to assess the same assignment. 

Please note that you can enable Annotation Tools even if you are using Turnitin. However, the annotations made with Turnitin and/or Brightspace's own Annotation Tools are not interchangeable. 

Both a student and you will not see annotations made with Brightspace's Annotation Tools in Turnitin and vice versa.  If you annotate with both, different inline feedback will be visible depending if you are viewing the submission in Turnitin or just in Brightspace. 

5. Video on using annotations for inline feedback in the Assignments tool

This video is made by Brightspace supplier D2L. Some screens might have a different look and feel to the Universiteit Leiden Brightspace environment.

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