Note: To copy a prior course into your current or upcoming Blackboard course shell, please use the Course Copy tool. Please do not try to export and import your prior course.

TIP: Keeping export/archive packages in a Blackboard course can contribute to course bloat. We strongly recommend that faculty delete packages from the course Export page after downloading or before running a new export. Each package counts against the course quota and keeping packages may result in limited space to add additional content to the course.


Review Blackboard's documentation on exporting or archiving a course.

You will be asked if you want to include student activity data in your export, including assignment submissions, grades, attendance data, and discussion posts.

  • If you want to include the student enrollment and student data: Select Yes.
  • if you only want to copy the content without the student enrollment and data: Select No.

Check your email for a message from Blackboard that the process has been completed. Depending on the size of your course, this process could take up to an hour.

Navigate to the the three dots in the top right of your course and select Export Course Package again to find the link to download the ZIP file of the package. 

TIP: The file name consists of the course ID and the date/time of export. If you find that your browser automatically unzips the package, try to use SAVE AS to your computer or use another browser.

Review Blackboard's documentation on exporting or archiving a course.

Anything bigger than 2 GB will have problems exporting and will not be importable to any course or server due to file upload limitations within the Blackboard application itself. If you are using the export function to prepare for a new semester, you can either use the Manage Package Contents to remove files from your course or use the Course Copy tool instead.

  • If you want to transfer materials to another course, choose Export. 
  • If you want to preserve an exact replica of your course, including student enrollments and work, choose Archive.
    NOTE: Only DoIT system administrators can "restore" an archived course to the Blackboard site.
  • Select All is ideal. This setting will gather all content areas, tests and rubrics, files and settings.
    • If you do not Select All, you must choose at least one of these areas: Content, Contacts, or Settings for the course copy to function. If you do not select one of these options, a warning appears
    • If you are selecting any content area with existing assignments and tests, you must also choose the Grade Center Columns and Settings for those items to deploy properly. Otherwise, you will have to recreate all of the assignments and redeploy all of the tests.

TIP: The file name consists of the course ID and the date/time of export. If you find that your browser automatically unzips the package, try to use SAVE AS to your computer or use another browser.

About Course Archives

Archiving refers to creating and storing in a secure, external location a copy of an old Blackboard course’s contents and data (e.g., everything the instructor and students have uploaded or entered into an old Blackboard course as well as the course structure such as folders, color scheme, banners, etc.). By comparison, an export consists of just the course structure, content, and settings. Archives preserve the course as it was delivered while exports are useful for reuse.

In the past, Blackboard courses indefinitely remained on the server. However, this practice resulted in poor performance for the Blackboard application and made it difficult for instructors to locate their current Blackboard courses. The current best practice is to maintain three academic years of Blackboard courses.

Courses that are archived and retired off the Blackboard production server may be restored to a master course shell or imported into a current course shell as content. On a case by case basis, a course may be completely restored with all data. An RT ticket is required for any request.

DoIT announced the start of Blackboard course archives on August 16, 2013. To view the announcement, visit Bb Courses Older Than FA2007 Will Be Deleted on 8/23/13. Starting in SP2016, all past, present and future updates related to course archives are posted to myUMBC.