Remember to Perform the Blackboard End of Semester Process

download-imgAt the end of each semester, instructors teaching within Blackboard  must perform a series of tasks called the End of the Semester Process. This process is helpful for preserving a full record of an instructor’s Blackboard course content, Grade Center, and student work in an archive file.


  • It is the instructor’s responsibility to archive each of the courses they have taught so that content and grade information can be accessed at a later date!
  • Due to the scheduled maintenance upgrade at the end of December, Blackboard will be unavailable to faculty and students from December 30th through January 1st.  Blackboard will become available again on January 2nd (unless otherwise communicated).

If you have any questions about performing the tasks in this process, please attend any of our upcoming End of the Semester Process Workshops.

Step 1: Download Your Course Grade Centers

Downloading the Grade Center is the only way that the grades can be saved and accessed at a later date.


Step 2: Make Semester Course Shells “Unavailable” to Students

At the end of each semester, it is the instructor’s responsibility to make their course “unavailable” to students.  This removes the course from your student’s course list and prevents them from accessing the course going forwards.  Please Note: This step must be performed before creating an Archive file. The Archive file will include the course’s current availability setting and will apply it to a course upon import.


Step 3: Request Personal Masters for Your Courses

A Personal Master is a space to develop or store a master copy of a single course’s materials. It is a unique course shell that is never deleted from the Blackboard system. Instructors should have one (1) Personal Master per each course that you teach (ex: ENG-201).

If you do not have a Personal Master for a particular course, please complete the Online Form Request.  You may skip this step if you already have a Personal Master for your courses.


Step 4: Archive the Course

Archiving the course compresses all course files into a .ZIP file. The Archive file can be later imported into a Personal Master for editing between semesters or your new semester course shell for display to your students. This is an important step to save your course content and re-purpose it at a later time.


Step 5: Recycle the Old Personal Master (if applicable)

If you have a Personal Master for the course that has just completed and want to update the Personal Master with any changes to content that occurred while teaching, it is a best practice to recycle all content from the old Personal Master before importing an Archive of a semester course into it. This prepares the Personal Master for new content and is a part of good file management.


Step 6: Import the Archive File into your Personal Master

Importing your Archive file into your Personal Master gives you the opportunity to view the course materials between semesters and update any content as necessary. Depending on the file size of your course, this process may take several minutes. Once the import process is complete, you will receive an email from Blackboard.


If you have any questions about these processes, contact the Blackboard Faculty Support team using our Contact Us Form.