Organize Your Course Materials via Folders

It’s easy to place files and other resources into your Blackboard course. You can organize or group them by using Folders.

Begin With Folders

Folders in Blackboard work just like they do on your desktop, i.e., they are used to organize, group, and order files and other folders. So, why bother to use a folders to organize materials? When you teach you present the material a topic at a time, so why not organize your course content similarly?

The contents of a folder, i.e., a lesson should not be a mystery to a learner. Let’s use the analogy of a textbook for a minute. Each chapter of a textbook begins with an introduction or chapter overview. Continuing with our analogy, a Blackboard lesson is accessed by clicking the link which is the name of the folder.

NOTE: Use “folder description” to provide an overview to the topic. Set the stage for the learner and prepare them for what they will find when they enter the folder, i.e., the organized lesson materials.

See below example:

  • Week 1: Introduction to Statistics
  • Week 2: Probability Theory
  • Week 3: t-tests
  • etc.

What should be familiar at this point is that the folder structure “mirrors” the structure and/or the chapters of the assigned text.

Now Add the Content

Adding content to a course is simple. You have options available to add files, links, embedded content, assignments, tests, discussion forums, blogs, journals, wiki’s, etc.

At this point in your course building, it’s all about organizing the materials within the folders so that the student is not overwhelmed. In the physical classroom, we follow a time-tested formula, i.e, introduce a topic, sequencing our lecture to impart our learning objectives, maybe distribute handouts, have the students perform an exercise, collaborate and/or discuss, and finally we test to see how well they have internalized the content. Within the folders in my course, I use this general sequence of items:

  1. Lesson Introduction
  2. List the Learning Objectives for the Lesson
  3. Upload my Presentation and/or Link to the Recorded Lecture
  4. Upload Handouts/Exercises
  5. Create the Turnitin or Blackboard Assignment
  6. Add Links to External Resources
  7. Optionally, you can include links to:
    1. Discussion Boards
    2. Blogs
    3. Journals
    4. Wiki’s
    5. Test

Recognize that you are building this as you go, copying the course from semester-to-semester, and updating and improving as you continue to teach the course.

Additional Assistance:

  • Call our Blackboard Help line 24 hours a day, every day at (213) 740-5555 and choose option 2.
  • Faculty can request help and training from USC’s Enterprise Learning Technologies group by submitting a request to