Safe Assignments

SafeAssignTM is a plagiarism prevention service offered by and included within Blackboard. SafeAssign assists in detecting unoriginal content in submitted papers. SafeAssign uses text matching software to detect unoriginal passages of text and flags them as potential instances of plagiarism. Make sure your students know that SafeAssign will only accept .doc, .docx, .odt, .txt, .pdf, .rtf and .html files and that papers with images must not exceed 2MB or the submission may fail

Safe Assignments are now integrated within the Assessments, Assignment, Submission Details option

Submission Details (click to expand the "new" assignment options)


Type Select whether the assignment is a “Individual Submission”, “Group Submission”, or a “Portfolio Submission
Number of Attempts Select Single Attempt, Multiple Attempts (type in #) or Unlimited 
Plagiarism Tools Placing a check mark in this box makes the assignment a SAFE ASSIGNMENT! Select the “Allow” box to allow students to view the SA report. Selecting the option "Exclude submissions" makes this a "DRAFT" Safe Assignment

More about the "exclude submissions" option

This option allows instructors to create what was called "Drafts" that do not include submissions in the Institutional or Global Reference Databases.

This option is "point-in-time" and "editable" after assignment creation. If the option were changed at a later date, new submissions would honor the new state of the setting. Example:

An instructor would like a single assignment to allow "Draft"  submissions, then a single "Final" submission, and only the final submission should be included by SafeAssign in the Institutional database for reference against later submissions.

This can be accomplish by taking the following steps:

    Create an Assignment with multiple attempts, SafeAssign, and the "exclude submissions" option enabled
    Students submit their "draft" works and submissions are not included in the Institutional or Global Databases
    When the final submission is expected, the instructor unchecks (disables) the "exclude submissions" option
    Students submit their final works, and submissions are then included in the Institutional or Global Databases

Control Panel, Course Tools, SafeAssign

Listings of Safe Assignments submissions and Direct Submit are still located and available from the Control Panel, Course Tools, SafeAssign area

If you have used the "Course Copy" option for your current course or have Imported your course from a previous course Safe Assignments MUST be synchronized to re-link assignments to the current course. If you do not synchronize the course students may have issues when trying to submit assignments.To synchronize:

Go to Control Panel, Course Tools, SafeAssign. Select SafeAssignments then on the next screen click to select "Synchronize this course" when complete have students to re-submit their Safe Assignments. 


How Do I Use the Direct Submit in SafeAssign?
 PDF image

Direct Submit allows instructors to upload papers directly without student involvement (accommodates those "out of the ordinary" type of situations). Before submitting a document through Direct Submit, the document must be saved locally. You can either upload the file into Direct Submit or use copy/paste to add text directly in the editor.

Things to Consider before using Direct Submit:

  • Create folder hierarchy prior to submission to maintain organization (e.g., Fall 2016; Spring 2016; September 20; Course 2110). There is no option to organize papers once submitted
  • Papers uploaded through Direct Submit are only added to the Institutional Database
  • Direct submit allows faculty members to submit one paper at a time or multiple papers at once in a ZIP file format.Each ZIP file should contain no more than 100 papers at a time. Do not submit more that 300 papers at once or short session.

SafeAssign Direct Submit

  • From the specific Blackboard course select Control Panel, Course Tools, SafeAssign
  • Select Direct Submit on the SafeAssign pane
  • Select Private (only available to instructor) or Shared (available to other instructors or TA in course)
  • Click the + before Submit a Paper to expand the Submission Options menu
  • Select the submission options desired and then select whether to upload a file or use the copy/paste option (see more specific in the PDF "How Do I Use the Direct Submit in SafeAssign" link above). Then click Submit

Direct Submit

How Do I Interpret the Report From SafeAssign? PDF image

This document will explain how to interpret the report that is received from a SafeAssign submit.

How Do I Review and Grade A SafeAssign Project?
 PDF image
Once students have submitted their assignments in SafeAssign the instructor may review the assignment, report and grade the project.

How Do I Clear A SafeAssign Attempt for a Student? PDF image
To allow a student to resubmit a SafeAssign project you must clear the attempt from Blackboard

I receive an error that I am "Not Logged In" to Safe Assignment? Why?

If you receive an error when you attempt to submit an attachment or grade a Safe Assignment indicates that your browser security settings are set not to allow 3rd party cookies. You need to change your browser security Privacy setting to allow and and retry.

The video below shows how to change browser settings in Firefox

Watch "how to"

 How Do I Download SafeAssign Projects Submitted?

  • Go to Control Panel; Course Tools; SafeAssign
  • On the SafeAssign window click to select Safe Assignments.  The Safe Assignment projects are listed.
  • To the right of the project click the chevron (down arrows) and select View Submissions
  • To select all student submissions, place a check mark to the left of the Student ID column or select individual students
  • Click Download All Submissions near the top of the window. This will download the submissions as a zip file and allow you to save locally.

Repeat above for each Safe Assignment project you have in the course 

  "Quick Tips for Faculty" PDF image

Blackboard: Safe Assignment presentation

This video is an archived Wimba Classroom tutorial presentation introducing Blackboard 9.1's Safe Assignment features. (32 minutes)