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## Are all the assignments in a group weighted equally?

I have assignment groups set up. There are multiple assignments in a group. If the assignments in that group are worth different point values, are they weighted differently inside that group?

Second question: I added an assignment to a group and the assignment is worth zero points, Extra Credit. Then I award points for it as I grade the submissions. How does that affect the computation inside the group where that assignment is?

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@BillNicholson Canvas only has the ability to do assignment group weights.  The assignments then within those groups are weighted based on the point values (not equally).  So, if I have a group called quizzes, and in there are three quizzes, one worth 20 points, one worth 30 points and one with 50 points which conveniently adds up to 100 total points.  Then the 20 point one is 20%, 30 point one is 30% and 50 point one is 50% of that category.  It is point based so it is not truly weighted within the category but mathematically it works out to a weight.

For the extra credit, it is just like giving a few more points to any of the assignments within that category.  For the quizzes example I used, if there was a 0 point quiz that students could get up to 10 extra credit points then they could earn a total of 110/100 points in the quiz category.

It gets sort of tricky though as if you are using weights and extra credit, students are not getting the full value of the extra credit.  Again, with my example, if the quizzes category is only worth 20% of the total course grade, those 10 extra points then only help in that 20% so in the overall course grade, that is 2 points (20% of 10 points).  So I have seen instructors use a different category for extra credit or track it somewhere else to add to the base of the points.

Here is the Canvas guide on extra credit:

How do I give extra credit in a course? - Instructure Community

Hope this helps!

-Nick

5 Replies Community Champion

@BillNicholson Canvas only has the ability to do assignment group weights.  The assignments then within those groups are weighted based on the point values (not equally).  So, if I have a group called quizzes, and in there are three quizzes, one worth 20 points, one worth 30 points and one with 50 points which conveniently adds up to 100 total points.  Then the 20 point one is 20%, 30 point one is 30% and 50 point one is 50% of that category.  It is point based so it is not truly weighted within the category but mathematically it works out to a weight.

For the extra credit, it is just like giving a few more points to any of the assignments within that category.  For the quizzes example I used, if there was a 0 point quiz that students could get up to 10 extra credit points then they could earn a total of 110/100 points in the quiz category.

It gets sort of tricky though as if you are using weights and extra credit, students are not getting the full value of the extra credit.  Again, with my example, if the quizzes category is only worth 20% of the total course grade, those 10 extra points then only help in that 20% so in the overall course grade, that is 2 points (20% of 10 points).  So I have seen instructors use a different category for extra credit or track it somewhere else to add to the base of the points.

Here is the Canvas guide on extra credit:

How do I give extra credit in a course? - Instructure Community

Hope this helps!

-Nick Community Member

Hi @nwilson7 ,

I'm a bit confused with the first part of your answer, about the explanation of the point value of assignments within an assignment group and how that translates back to the percentages within that group. To my knowledge and understanding, everything in Canvas Grades is calculated back to percentages and the point value of an assignment within that assignment group is therefore not of any influence. In how I have always perceived the calculation of the assignment group, scoring 18 points on the 20 point assignment (referring to your example) means the same as scoring 27 points on the 30 point assignment: it calculates back to 90% of the total assignment point value and therefore both assignments influence the assignment group exactly the same and none of these assignments are 'more important' in the final score. Am I wrong?

I'm asking, because I've always hoped for the ability to weigh assignments within an assignment group, wether or not with a workaround solution, but up until now I haven't believed this could be done. So basically I'm hoping for you to explain a bit more for me to find out it is actually doable 😉  Community Coach

Hi @chantal2,

When using assignment groups, the point values do still matter.  Basically, for each group, Canvas takes the total points earned and then divides by the total points possible.  That value is then multiplied by the group weight percentage and all of those group values are added up to get the total grade for the student.

As an example, let's say an "Exams" assignment group has Exam 1 worth 100 points and Exam 2 is worth 10 points, and a weight of 50%.  If a student gets a perfect score on Exam 1, but gets nothing right on exam 2, here's how it would work out...  (100+0)/(100+10)=90.9% (the score for the group).  90.9%*50%=45.45% (the part of the final grade that the student earned for that group.  Does that help?

-Chris Community Member
Yes, that helps! Thank you very much! Community Champion

Thank @chriscas for chiming in with the explanation!  The points also matter if you use any of the rules such as "drop lowest" as Canvas will do the one that helps students the most (gives them the best grade).  So scoring a 50% on a 10 point exam affects the student much less than 50% on a 100 point exam, so Canvas would drop the 100 point one so that the student ends up with a better overall score.

-Nick 