Advanced Learning Technologies

File Managment



Files that are uploaded into content areas in Blackboard should have a three or four letter file extension (such as ".doc", ".txt", or ".html") which designates their type and is a commonly used extension name recognized by Web browsers.

- Be sure to give your files short names written in lower case with no spaces or special characters.

For example: If you wish to upload a Microsoft PowerPoint document, it must be named similarly to "mypresentation.ppt", ".ppt" being the file extension for PowerPoint. Please refer to the table below for commonly used file extensions.)

This is beneficial because Web browsers are pre-configured to recognize common file types. A student can click on a file such as "sample.xls" and the browser will automatically launch the associated program, in this case, Excel. Accordingly, items that are uploaded may require that the students taking your course have the associated program residing on the computer they use.



Instructors should be sensitive to the fact that students may be connecting to their Blackboard site via a modem and that connection speed will vary based on Internet traffic.

Instructors can use this chart as a reference when determining the download times for files.

- Files should be kept small enough so users with slower connections will still be able to access them in a reasonable time.
- Minimize file size by using a file compression tool such as WinZip. These are often available free online or for a small fee.
- Split file into several parts and communicate this to students.
- Inform students that the download may take longer than usual if you have a large file. This will help diffuse any frustration associated with the long process.


Files or documents need to be organized so you can easily retrieve them. Just like a filing cabinet, it is helpful if you organize your electronic files or documents by creating folders and placing your files within them.

File folders can contain other file folders. When a folder has too many files to easily manage, you can simply create more folders or sub-folders and move your files into them for ease of use.

- Keep all related files together (i.e. project, person, course, semester).
- Create folders and organize them according to your own scheme.
- Put your folders in a location you can easily find.
- Think about your organizational structure before you start working on your documents.
- Always keep a backup of your work on a CD, a Zip disk or use the Content System .