Auto-submit and auto-save features for timed assessments

Blackboard tests, quizzes, and surveys are equipped with an auto-submit feature and an auto-save feature. The auto-submit option allows instructors to close students out of their assessment once their time limit is reached; auto-save relays student progress to the Blackboard servers every 5-to-10 seconds to ensure your students' work is captured in your Grade Center.


Timed assessments may be configured to submit and close automatically once the allotted time has passed. Auto-submit grants you more control over how long students may take to complete their attempts.

Please note: If you do not enable auto-submit, students will be able to complete the test at their leisure, but it will mark them as having gone over the time-limit and prompt you to provide a manual grade. If you do not use auto-submit, it is important to establish a rigid grading policy for time-expired tests.

How to enable auto-submit 

  1. From within your course's website, navigate to the content area  where your assessment is contained.
  2. Hover over the title of your assessment and select the dropdown arrow. Click Edit the Test Options.
  3. Under section 2, Test Availability, check the Set Timer box (see below). You may set the amount of time students have before the test expires using the Hours and Minutes dropdown fields.
  4. Set Auto-Submit to ON.
  5. Click Submit to activate your settings immediately for all future attempts.


Every 5-10 seconds, Blackboard automatically records students' answers in case of a computer crash, internet outage, or accidental exit. If the assessment was set to force completion, the student will still be locked out of his or her attempt, but instructors will be able to view what answers were entered. This happens regardless of whether or not the student had clicked the Save button. If a student exits his/her attempt by navigating to another webpage, Blackboard will warn the user and save his progress before closing.

How to enable auto-save

The auto-save feature is built into all assessments, so you do not have to configure your assessments or courses to enable this feature. Enjoy!

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  • 21-Dec-2015