How to use the Assignments tool

Assignments are used to easily assess and evaluate the work of students. Lecturers can use the Assignments tool to create and edit assignments for their course activities, see users submission times, view submissions on the Evaluate Submission page, associate assignments to rubrics and grades, and return submissions with feedback.

Assignments tool serves to manage course activity on which input from students is required. An assignment in Brightspace does not require to be created with a grade association, nor a file submission.

This article will describe the options and functions of the Assignment tool and explain the homepage:

Navigating to the Assignments homepage

1. Click on Assessment in the navbar of the course, this will open the drop-down menu
2. From the drop-down menu, click Assignments

Navigate to Assessment, then select Assignments

Assignments homepage

This action opens the homepage of the Assignments. If you are using this tool in your Brightspace course page for the first time, the homepage of this tool will appear empty with only three default buttons: New Assignment, Edit categories, More Actions.

Assignments homepage
1. New Assignment button

Click this button to start creating a new assignment for the students of your course. 

For more visit: How to create an Assignment

2. Edit Categories button

Can be used to create categories for your assignments which serve as containers for similar group of assignments.

3. More Actions button

Clicking this button will show a drop-down list with additional options. Click on More Actions to open the menu:


Assignments homepage - More Actions button
3.1. Preview

Use this option if you want to see how the Assignments homepage with the list of assignments (and categories) will be shown to students.

3.2. Reorder

Use this option to change the order of the assignments how they appear in the list on the Assignments homepage.

3.3. Event Log

Use this option if you want to see the event log for the assignments of the course, which keeps track of:

  • when assignments are Created
  • when assignments are Deleted
  • when assignments are Restored

Assignment names in blue indicate the assignment(s) is (are) active. These are assignments with status Created or Restored.

Assignment names in gray indicated that they were deleted, and so no more active and available. Additionally, a Restore button to this deleted assignments appears, for the option to restore the assignment into active state again.

3.4. Make Visible to Users

Use this option if you want to make more than one assignment visible to students at once. You can also make assignments visible one by one (Down-facing arrow - Assignment quick menu).

3.5. Hide from Users

Use this option if  you want to make more than one assignment visible to students at once. You can also make assignments visible one by one (Down-facing arrow - Assignment quick menu).

3.6. Delete

Use this option if you want to delete more than one assignment at once.

To use this option, you will first have to select the assignments in the assignment homepage list by clicking on the Select box in front of each that you want to delete. After you select the assignments to be deleted, you will be able to use this option.

Assignments table overview

Once new assignment(s) has (have) been added, a the table with all created (and active) assignments will appear on the Assignments homepage with the following information:

Assignments overview
5. Bulk Edit option

This option is located above the table with assignments. It can be used to edit the names, categories, access and/or deadlines of multiple assignments.

To use this option:

  • Select the assignment(s) to be edited by ticking the Select box(es) in the column before the name of the assignment, 
  • Click Bulk Edit
  • Make the desired changes 
  • Click Save
6. Assignment column

This column will list all assignments active in the course, both the ones hidden from and visible to students. The list shows the specific assignments and can also show categories if these are used.

Categories are like containers to visually group and organise the assignments.  You can create them through the Edit categories tab above the table, or directly when creating an assignment.

Assignment category

Behind the name of a category there are two icon:

  • The pencil icon allows to change the name of the category by clicking on it.
  • The bin icon deletes the category; the category will also be deleted from the category list.

The bin icon will not delete assignments associated to this category. It will place them in the default No category.

7. New Submissions column

This column will show the number of new submissions by student/group to the assignment (click on the number to go to these submissions).

8. Completed column

This column shows a number of completed submissions out of the number of submissions to be completed, by either students or groups. This means how many students in your course are expected to complete and have completed this activity. If it is a group assignment this will show the number of groups that have to complete this activity and already have made a submission to an assignment thus far.

9. Evaluated column

This column shows a number of evaluated submissions out of the total number of submissions to be evaluated, of either students or groups.

10. Feedback Published column

This column shows a number of feedbacks published out of the total number of the feedbacks to be published, to either students or groups. The feedback published can be either grade and/or another type of feedback.

11. Due date column

This column shows the due date and time for the assignment (if applicable).

Assignment icons

Behind the name of the assignment are several symbols, depending on the status of the assignment.

Assignment - icons
1. Down-facing arrow - Assignment quick menu

This will open a drop-down menu with click-links for the assignment.

Click on the arrow behind the name of the assignment to open the quick menu:

Assignment - quick menu options

The options of the quick menu are:

  1. View Submissions to see the submitted files for the assignment
  2. Edit Assignment to change the settings of the assignment
  3. Make Visible to Users/Hide from users to make the assignment visible/invisible to students. Students can only submit their assignment when the assignment is set to visible. Any newly created assignment is invisible by default unless this has been unchecked at Restrictions (see How to set restrictions to an assignment). Restrictions can also be used to make an assignment available from a specific date, or add other restrictions
  4. Delete Assignment to delete the assignment. It is possible to retrieve deleted assignments through the Event Log (see below under Submission Log)
  5. Submission Log to see when a student has submitted his/her assignment (see How to use the Assignments tool: Submission Log)
2. Eye icon

The assignment is invisible to students. When you unhide (make visible) the assignment to students, the icon disappears.

3. Diagram icon

An assignment has release-conditions active. For more visit: How to set restrictions for an Assignment

4. Group icon

An assignment with this icon indicates that it is a group assignment.

There is no icon indicating individual assignment.

5. Medal icon

This icon indicates that an assignment is linked to a grade item in Brightspace. For more visit: Assignments: Evaluation and Feedback


You now know how to use Assignments tool in Brightspace!