In New Gradebook, instructors intuit incorrectly that Hide and Post replace Mute/Unmute. They believe these actions affect future grades. They do not know to look for the Grade Posting Policy.
Improving Canvas Guides only helps people who think they don't know what they're doing and "stop and ask for directions." At my campus, the onus has been put on instructional designers and admins to try to get the word out that these tools don't function the way they seem like they would. Because we use a lot of adjuncts, we will need to continue this campaign for as long as the tool is like this in Canvas. It's not a case where we teach people once and it's fine. Every new person will have to be taught not to trust their intuition with this tool.
This is unsustainable and erodes user trust in Canvas.
Therefore, I suggest making Grade Posting Policy and Hide/Post more intuitive in both Grades and SpeedGrader.
In both SpeedGrader and Grades (so they match), give three clickable options:
- Visible [would make past and future submissions visible to students]
- Invisible [would make past and future submissions invisible to students]
- More Options [would open a right-side tray]
Notice Visible and Invisible are not verbs; they are states of being. This is what instructors want: to know what state an assignment is currently in and to be able to easily toggle it. Depending on how the assignment is set, either Visible or Invisible will be checked. The eyeball can give an icon clue without even clicking into this menu.
For the small number of people who need more granular control over the visibility of the assignment, More Options can open a right-side tray (or a pop-up or whatever). This tray/pop-up can control more options for whether future grades are posted or not, etc).
The benefit to this system is it keeps it clean and simple for the vast number of users who really miss the mute/unmute toggle, but it allows more granular access for advanced users who need it.
I click into SG to grade a submission. A quick peek at the eyeball shows that it doesn't have a slash through it, so I know it's visible to students. I click the eyeball, see the check is next to Visible, and click Invisible. I grade and click the eyeball again, change the state to invisible.
I've graded two submissions and look to see, oh shoot! The eyeball doesn't have a slash through it. I quickly click on the eyeball, change it to Invisible, and (this is a major change from currently) can grade the rest of the assignment, knowing with confidence that no students can see their grades.
I'm setting my gradebook up for the term and quickly scan through the assignments. The eyeball quickly tells me which items are invisible to students.
Several students are late with their assignment. Against the advice of my instructional designer, who is worried about academic integrity, I want to release feedback for the assignments I've already graded. But as the assignments come in, I'd prefer to hold off on releasing feedback for the tardy people until those are graded. I don't see an easy way to do that, so now I know I need to ask for directions, either by asking my ID or searching on Canvas. I see the More Options feature, click on that, and from there can control who gets the feedback released. This is not something I anticipate having to do often, so I don't mind having another click to get there.
Yes, I editorialized a bit in the last one, and that's because More Options would not be relevant to most people. It makes sense to have the intuitive option foremost, with the more complex, advanced options hidden behind a click.