Journals Introduction

Journals are tools that provide space for student reflection for the student.  These guides will demonstrate how to add a journal activity to the course.

Benefits for Faculty

Instructors can use the journal tool as a personal space to communicate privately with their students. Instructors can also use the journal tool to obtain opinions from students on how to improve the evaluation process.

Journals are recommended for students'  reflection on their experiences or a summary of learning notes, for which they may receive feedback from the instructor. If you wish for students to interact and comment on their work, it is recommended to use the Blog or the Discussion Board tools.

Benefits for Students

Journals provide a space for students to share their thoughts and reflections with the course instructor. Students can also use a journal as a self-reflective tool to actively discuss and analyze course related topics or materials (Quality Matters Standards 5.2 and 6.2), and to post their opinions, ideas, and concerns about the course.

If you are using Journals in your courses, you might want to share the following link with your students that gives step-by-step navigation on how to access and make a journal post.

When and How

By default, Journals are set to private. Instructors can change this setting to public, which means that other students can see others Journal, but cannot comment on it.

In a public setting, students can read what other students wrote and build upon those ideas.

When used in the Group area, members of a Group can view and comment on each other’s entries for a Group journal. The Group can communicate with the instructor as a whole and all members can benefit from the comments made.

Journal entries can be assigned a grade or can be used solely for communication. In either instance, you can make multiple entries for one journal topic.

Using Journals in Blackboard

Use the links below to access instructional guides on how to set up and use journals in Blackboard: