Blackboard – Retention Center

The Retention Center helps you determine how well your students are doing based on specific criteria. It allows you to see the academic state of the class as a whole, while providing ways to focus on specific students based on their activities in the class. It provides a way for you to contact students who have been flagged, and then keeps track of your correspondence with them. You can also make individual notes about each student.

The Retention Center begins with some criteria or “Rules” set up, but you can customize these and add more. You can identify both students at risk and those who are exceling.

To access the Retention Center go to the Control Panel, then Evaluation, then Retention Center. If you do not see it listed there, activate it by going to Control Panel: Customization: Tool Availability and, in the list of tools that appears, check the box next to “Retention Center.”

The Retention Center Window:

  1. Students Currently at Risk
    1. Click on the colored bar to see the number of students in each category: deadlines, grades, course activity, and course access. You can also click the number to send email to all students in any category.
    2. You can sort the columns by clicking on the column header name.
    3. Click the red dot in each cell to see more detailed information about that student, add them to the Monitor list, or send them email.
    4. Click the student’s name to see their risk factors, your correspondence with them, and your private notes. (Note: You can also track students who are doing well, who you might want to consider as future TAs, or who you might want to act as mentors for other students.)
    5. Click the Monitor button to add the student to the right-side panel. This will give you a quick way to track that student.
  2. Your Course Activity
    1. This tracks your activity in the class and is visible only to you.
    2. It includes when you last logged in, the time lag for grading student submissions, your participation in interactive components such as the Discussion Board, or Blogs and Journals, recent announcements, and any new course content you have added.
    3. It can help you determine where your attention is needed and provides the link to take you to that area of the course.
    4. Students you are monitoring and other information you are monitoring
    5. To have a student appear in this column so that you can track them more easily, click on the student’s name, then click on the Monitor button.
    6. If you create new rules they can be added to the “Other information you are monitoring area by checking the box(es) next to the rule name and choosing “Action: Exclude from risk table.”

Creating a New Rule

  1. Click the Customize button (upper right corner)
  2. Choose a rule to edit by clicking the drop-down menu button next to the rule name.
  3. To create a new rule, click “Create New Rule” Enter a name for the rule and choose the type of rule it is: Deadline, Grade, Activity, or Access.
  4. Included in Risk Table: Select Yes to include the rule in the risk table, so student performance can be viewed at a glance. Select No if you only need to see the that information when you drill down in the “Other information you are monitoring” area.

Very detailed help

From the University of Toledo: Retention Center

Updated on September 21, 2020

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