General Suggestions

The editing tools are pretty simple in the Blackboard portfolio tool. We are constantly finding work-arounds or ways to ‘fake’ the system and get the portfolio to look the way you want!
Your pages do not always look the same in Edit mode as they do in the final view. For example, we often see little or no spaces between paragraphs in the edit mode, but there are spaces when you preview your pages (which is what others will see.)
My suggestion: As you work in the edit mode, periodically click on the Preview and Customize button on the top, right side of the screen between the

[Settings] and [Done Editing] buttons
Remember that web sites may look different depending on the computers and browsers others are using. You may want to share a snapshot of your portfolio with a friend from time to time during development and see what they see.

Make Text Look Consistent Within a Page and from Page to Page
Many people copy and paste text from other places into their portfolio. This often leaves the text on different pages of the portfolio, or even blocks of text within one page, look different.

My suggestion:
A good rule of thumb for any text that will be viewed online is to use the pre-determined Format Styles rather than adjusting the font and size of text on each page. The best idea is to copy your text into the portfolio (or enter the text directly) and then:

1. Highlight all the text on the page
2. Click on the Remove Formatting button on the far right of the first row of editing tools.

cursor pointing to an icon that looks like an eraser

 

3. Click on one of the pre-set Format styles in your page – the portfolio tool only has five: heading, sub-heading 1, sub-heading 2, paragraph, and formatted code – and choose Paragraph for all the text.

pop up box shows the options for Formats listed in the text

4. Then highlight any text you want as heading or subheadings and choose the appropriate style for that text.
5. Finally, highlight any text that you want to do some special editing with, such as information in a list, words you want to be italicized or bold, text you want centered or right justified, etc and choose the appropriate editing features.
6. Repeat these steps on all the pages in your portfolio
Unfortunately, the editing tools in the Blackboard portfolio do not allow you to easily customize the styles, but at least the text will be consistent among your pages!

Note that you can go into the HTML code and make changes, but that is way beyond what most people are willing to do.

FYI, the other reason that it is good practice to use pre-determined styles in any material that will be online is to make it accessible to people who use a screen reader.

Article Credit: Susan W Quinn.
Email: susanq@sc.edu