Grades

The Grades tool is your opportunity to enter student grades, track a student’s progress, and calculate final grades. There are several options available when setting up your gradebook. The two most common gradebook types are weighted and points. Students are able to view their grades via the Grades tool as well

 

Accessing Grades

To open the Grades tool, click on the “Evaluation” link group in the default course NavBar and then select Grades.

   

Setting Up Your Gradebook

Running the Setup Wizard

The Grades Setup Wizard will help set up the framework for your Gradebook. You can change these settings any time you want and can run the wizard multiple times if necessary. To begin settings up your Gradebook select the "Start" button from the Grades Setup Wizard.

Step 1

  1. The First step of the wizard is where you will select your Grading System. You can choose from a Weighted, Points, or Formula grading system. This is one step that it is best not to change after the Gradebook has been created.
    • Weighted – allows you to select what percentage a particular grade item or category makes up the final grade
    • Points – calculates the final grade by dividing the total point earned by the total points possible.
    • Formula – allows you to create your own calculation.
  2. Once you have selected your grade system click Continue.

Step 2

  1. Choose your Final Grade Release Option
    • If Calculated Final Grade is chosen, when the final grades are released to students the grade displayed in the Calculated Grade. This grade is not editable.
    • If Adjusted Final Grade is chosen, the Adjusted Grade is the one released to students which is either transferred from the Calculated Grade or manually filled in.
  2. Click Continue.

 

Step 3

  1. Select your Grade Calculation options. You can select how you want to treat ungraded items
    • Drop ungraded items - any grade items that do not have a grade will be dropped from the Final Grade calculation.
    • Treat ungraded items as 0 - any grade items that do not have a grade will be graded as a 0 in the Final Grade calculation.
      • Note: If you select Treat ungraded items as 0 and show the final grade to students, their final grade will appear lower due to assignments that have not been graded. However, if you select Drop Ungraded Items, you must remember to manually assign a grade of 0 to missing work or it will not count against the student.
  2. If you select the Auto Update checkbox, the final grade will be updated any time you make changes to any grade items. If this option is not selected you must manually re-calculate final grades after updating any grade item.
  3. Click Continue.

Step 4

  1. Select the Default Grade Scheme for the Gradebook. 
    • You can create other grade schemes that you design, such as letter grades or points or you can choose to apply grade schemes to particular grade items in the Gradebook.
    • You will have to create other Grade Schemes before you will have the option here to change it to anything other than the default “Percentage”.
  2. Click Continue

Step 5

  1. Set the default number of decimal places displayed to fewer or more. 
  2. Click Continue.

 

Step 6

  1. Setup the Student View for your Gradebook. This setting affects both what you and your students see in the Grade View.
  2. Select the Display Final Grade Calculation option to show students how their final grades are calculated.
  3. Click Continue.

 

Step 7

  • The final step will give you a summary of everything you have setup in the Grades Setup Wizard. You can select back to return to previous steps to change a setting or when you are done choose Finish. You can return to the Grade Setup Wizard at any time to make changes.
  1. Click Finish to save.

 

Note: To change any of these settings, simply click Setup Wizard at the top of the screen from anywhere in the grades tool and change the appropriate options.

 

Creating Grade Categories

Creating Grade Categories will allow you to organize and group related grade items into sections that you can easily manage. For example, you may choose to group all of your short assignments under a category labeled “Assignments” and all of your quizzes under a category labeled “Quizzes”. Sorting your grade items by Category helps you keep your Gradebook organized, but also helps when assigning weights. It is recommended that you create categories for tests, papers, discussions, participations, etc.

  1. From the Manage Grades page, click the New button and select Category
  2. Type a Name for your Category, for example “Tests” or “Assignments”
  3. Type an optional Short Name.
  4. The Short Name is used on the Grades List page as the Category title, if your Category name is long it will cause the spreadsheet to expand, making it long and difficult to read. By using a concise Short Name you can eliminate this particular issue.

  5. The next area is where you will define your Grading preferences:
    • If you are using the weighted system (defined on the Grade Calculations page), you can specify how much a category contributes to the final grade by typing the value (for example, 30%) in the Weight field. You will not see the Weight field if using Points.
    • Check Can Exceed to allow the total points/weight of the grade items in the category to exceed the maximum points/weight allotted for that category.

    • Example (Points System) an “Assignments” category has been created that contains two grade items: Assignment 1 and Assignment 2. Both assignments are out of 10 points, and both items are allowed to exceed the maximum points allotted for the item. Student A receives 12/10 and 11/10 on the grade items. By checking Can Exceed, Student A will receive 23/20. If this option is not checked, the student would receive 20/20, even though the individual grade items exceeded the maximum

    • Example (Weighted System) an “Assignments” category has been created that contains two grade items: Assignment 1 and Assignment 2, both worth 50% of the category. Both items are also allowed to exceed the weight allotted for the item. Student A receives 100% on Assignment 1 and 110% on Assignment 2. By checking Can Exceed, Student A will receive 105% on the assignment category. If this option is not checked, the student would receive 100%, even though the grade items are allowed to exceed the maximum weight.

    1. If you are using the weighted system, check the Distribute weight evenly across all items in the category box if you want to make all grade items worth an equal amount within the category. As you add items to a category, they are automatically re-weighted for you. For example, if you have two grade items in the category, one out of 10 points and one out of 20, if you select Distribute weight evenly, each grade item will be worth 50% of the category. (If you are using the points system, this option will not appear.)
    2.   If you are using the points system, the Distribute points across all items option is available. If you select this item, all items in the category to be worth the same amount.

  6. The Distribution option will also allow you to assign the Number of highest non-bonus grade values to drop and Number of lowest non-bonus grade values to drop, enter the applicable numbers in the appropriate fields if you want to drop the highest and lowest grades achieved in the category for each student.
    • Example: If you create five grade items in a category but only want three of the items to count towards each student’s final grade, you could enter a 1 in each field to drop the highest and the lowest grade that each student receives in that grade category. Alternatively, you could type a 0 in the Number of highest… field and a 2 in the Number of lowest… field to drop each student’s two lowest grades in the category.
      • Items can only be dropped if they belong to a category and if the Distribute weight evenly across all items in the category option is turned on. Dropped items appear on the Grades List as “Dropped” and do not count towards the student’s final grade.

  7. The Display Options field will allow you to enable certain Statistical options to be viewable to your course.
    • Display class average for this category to everyone will show students and instructors a graphical representation of the class average for this category.
    • Display grade distribution for this category to everyone will show users a grade distribution graph.

  8. Be sure to Save when finished by clicking Save, or Save and New to continue creating grade categories.

 

Creating Grade Items

You can create Grade Items and assign them to individual tests, quizzes, assignments, etc.

  1. From the Manage Grades page, click the New button and select Item
  2. By clicking the New button you will be asked to pick a Grade Item Type, your options are:
    • Numeric - Graded by assigned a value out of a specified total number of points
    • Selectbox - Graded by selecting the grade scheme level that matches their achievement, for example “Very Good” or “B+”
    • Pass/Fail - Graded by using a simple pass/fail grade scheme
    • Formula - Graded using a custom formula
    • Calculated - Graded by calculating users’ cumulative achievement across multiple grade items
    • Text - Provide comments in the grade book that are not calculated into Final Grade
  3. After you select the Grade Item Type, you will be taken to the New Item page to enter a Name for your item
  4. Type an optional Short Name. This is used on the Grades List page as the Grade Item title, if your Grade Item name is long it will cause the spreadsheet to expand, making it long and difficult to read. By using a concise Short Name you can eliminate this particular issue
  5. Select a Category if you want the Grade Item to be associated with one
  6. Add an optional description for this Grade Item, students can view the description
  7. Enter the maximum number of points the student can achieve on this grade item.
  8. Select the weight of the assignment. If you are using a weighted system, this value will be either a percentage of the entire Gradebook or of the grade category. If this item belongs to a category and you have elected to make each item of equal weight within that category, the Gradebook will figure this for you.

Entering Grades

You can enter grades from either the Spreadsheet view or the Standard view. The Spreadsheet view will give you a little more control when you enter grades and offers the option to tab from cell to cell when entering grades.

To Assign Grades for a Single Grade Item

  1. From the Enter Grades List, Select Grade All from the context menu of the item you would like to grade
  2. You can enter general comments for the grade item in the Overall Comments text field. Overall comments will be displayed to all users who see this item in their grade book
  3. Enter student grades. Depending on the type of item you are grading, you will see different options:
    • If you are grading a Numeric grade item, enter a grade value for each student in the Out Of Grade or Points column
    • If you are grading a Selectbox grade item, select the appropriate grade range from the Selectbox Grade drop-down list for each student. Each grade range is associated with an Assigned Value (set up in the Grade Scheme), and where no Assigned Value has been added the value is the starting percentage for the range
    • If you are grading a Check box grade item, check the box in the Out Of Grade/Points column for students who have successfully completed the grade item. This is an all or nothing grade item type—pass or fail. That is, students will either receive full points/weight for the item (if the box is checked) or no points/weight at all (if the box is unchecked)
  4. Click the Feedback icon to enter individualized feedback. The Grade Feedback page displays, where you can type Feedback for the student to view along with their grades. You can also type Private Comments that will not be visible to the student
  5. Click on the Event Log icon to see all recorded events concerning this user and grade item.
  6. There are also icons on the top of the page that allow you to perform various functions:
    • Click Grade to enter the same grade value for all selected users
    • Click Clear to remove all previously entered grades for all selected users for this grade item.
    • Click Email to email all selected users
  7. Be Sure to Save when Finished

 

 

To Assign Grades to a Grade Category

  1. From the Enter Grades List, select Grade All item from a category context menu
  2.   The Category Details will show you the weight of this particular Grade Category toward the final grade
  3. Enter student grades for each of the grade items. Depending on the type of item you are grading, you will see different options:
    • If you are grading a Numeric grade item, enter a grade value for each student in the Out Of Grade or Points column
    • If you are grading a Selectbox grade item, select the appropriate grade range from the Selectbox Grade drop-down list for each student. Each grade range is associated with an Assigned Value (set up in the Grade Scheme), and where no Assigned Value has been added the value is the starting percentage for the range
    •   If you are grading a Check box grade item, check the box in the Out Of Grade/Points column for students who have successfully completed the grade item. This is an all or nothing grade item type—pass or fail. That is, students will either receive full points/weight for the item (if the box is checked) or no points/weight at all (if the box is unchecked)
  4. Click the Feedback icon to enter individualized feedback. The Grade Feedback page displays, where you can type Feedback for the student to view along with their grades. You can also type Private Feedback that will not be visible to the student
  5. Click on the Event Log icon to see all recorded events concerning this user and grade item.
  6. Click Clear All Grades to remove all previously entered grades for this grade item
  7. The Total Weight or Total Points (depending on selected Grades calculation) column displays the category's contribution to the final grade for the student and changes to reflect the modifications you make to the grades
  8.   Be Sure to Save when Finished

 

Calculating Final Grades

The final grade properties are setup by clicking on the Ruler/Checkbox button in the context menu of the Final Calculated Grade item

  1. To calculate the final grade for the final grade, click the Recalculate Calculated Grade icon. The Calculated Grade is the total points/grade the student received in a course before any grade items were adjusted (removed or changed). You can then transfer the calculated grade to the adjusted grade by clicking the transfer icon >
  2. The Adjusted Grade is the final grade after all grade items have been adjusted
    • You can override these options by manually altering the grade in the Adjusted Grade field
  3. Click the check box next to the Release icon (the eyeball) to release final grades to the user
  4. The View Log of Events will show you the date of last modification, user, grade, out of grade, adjusted grade, grade symbol, and who made the modifications.
  5. Be sure to Save your changes

 

Important Grade Tips

Deleting Grade Categories or Items

  1. To Delete a Grade Item/Category go to the Manage Grades page
  2. Click the More Actions button and select Delete.
  3. Simply select the checkbox to the left of the Grade Item/Category
  4. Click the Delete button.
    • A dialog box asking if you are sure you want to delete will pop up, just click Ok to delete. If the grade book item is being used by a quiz or a Dropbox folder, you will not be able to delete it until you have removed its association with the quiz or Dropbox folder that is using it.
    • Deleting any grade item will permanently delete any grades entered into the system.

  How to Know if Final Grade is Released to Students

  • A simple way to know if you have release the Final Grade to students and they can view it is the eyeball indicator. Once you have released the Final Grade a visible indicator will show beside those users Final Calculated Grade.