Over the summer we gave the New Gradebook a good “tire kicking” before releasing it en masse this fall. Most of the changes are subtle, some changes are powerful but just under the surface. However, some changes are very informational, yet are confusing until you look a little deeper. Also, there are some advanced features that you may be excited to try. So, “What’s new?”
Let’s start with the cool stuff. It's cool on an Academic Technology level, anyway. I'm referring to the new feature that is helpful by filtering the gradebook down to see only the specific group of students you want to see. The new gradebook makes it possible to filter your list of students assignment groups, by module, by section, and by student group.
So, it might be used to find the:
- weekly reflection (grade group)
- for the week 2 module
- in section 004
- student group “the cooliest biologists”
Of course you don’t have to drill down that far to be useful. The filter feature is super handy, but you have to pull it into view, or that functionality sits hiding below the surface.
To pull them into view, in Gradebook, go to “view”>”Filters” and then click on the one(s) that you want to try.
In contrast, there are a things that are immediately in view with the new gradebook that are, let’s say not perfectly clear. One such item is the color based “status” indication. By color, you can tell if an assignment is late, missing, or excused. If the color doesn’t work for you, you can change it.
The defaults are:
Blue : Late submission
Red : Missing submission
Green : Resubmitted assignment
Orange : Dropped grade
Yellow : Excused assignment
Also in the realm of informative but potentially confusing is the icons that appear in the new gradebook. With a glance you can tell much about the current grade situation, however, you may not have a clue as to what the iconography means. I find it easiest to just look it up the key and instructions in the Canvas document specific to the icons and colors in the New Gradebook.
However, there is one icon, ,that I need to call to your attention right now. The hidden symbol may appear at the top of a grading column, it indicates that the manual grading policy is set for that column. It also means that at least 1 grade is not visible (posted) to the student(s) for that assignment. This new icon shows up by default to those that used the "mute/unmute" feature on the previous version of gradebook. That feature allowed you to hide (mute) the grades from view, enter the grades, and later post (unmute) all of the grades at a later time. The change is that now you can start out with all the grades hidden, and post (make visible to the student) one grade at a time if you want. So, if you previously used the mute/unmute Canvas assumes that you want to use the manual grading policy. You do have a choice though, you can also set it to post your grades automatically/instantly by changing the Grade Posting Policy. but that isn't immediately obvious that is what you need to do from the eyeball on the screen. You may want to look closer at this one in How do I use New Gradebook?
More functionality includes setting late policies and curving grades. Also, inserting zeros is handy by using the set default grades feature, and you can choose to override your final grades column for whatever reason.
I hope that helps give you a better idea what the New Gradebook is all about. If you want help with any of this, shoot us an email, or leave a message below.