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nancy_lachance
Community Contributor

Grade Post Policy Anomalies (redux)

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Has anyone run into any anomalies with the MANUAL grade post policy. I have a situation in which the manual policy is set at the course level, but it is applied erratically to the actual assignments. The user swears she did NOT change these individually, and I have the sense that she would not do that. (She says: "What is the point of doing that if it does not hide all the assignment grades up front and we have to go into each assignment to do this process for each individually").   I thought maybe it was because the assignments in question used Turnitin?  Or Peer Grading? But that does not seem to hold true. Has anyone seen any weird behaviors like this??

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RobDitto
Community Champion

 @nancy_lachance  might the assignments which mysteriously have an automatic post policy have been copied or imported from a different course, still on Old Gradebook at the time of the import, and where the original assignment was unmuted?  We see that sometimes in our courses when the order of events is (1) first applying a course-level manual post policy, and then (2) importing assignments from another course. 

Quoting my excellent colleague  @lindalee ‌'s explanation:

Content imports with unmuted assignments will override the manual post policy settings. The gradebook will still have a manual post policy setting, but the individual assignments that had been unmuted will have an "automatic" grade posting policy set.

The root cause is API differences between assignments in Old and New Gradebooks. Another of my terrific colleagues,  @RebeccaMoulder ‌, found a workaround last fall to fix up assignments after import:

To fix this (in the newer course after imports), in the course post policy change it to "Automatic" and click "Update," then change the post policies back to "Manual" and click "Update" again. That will push out the updated settings to the copied assignments.

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RobDitto
Community Champion

 @nancy_lachance  might the assignments which mysteriously have an automatic post policy have been copied or imported from a different course, still on Old Gradebook at the time of the import, and where the original assignment was unmuted?  We see that sometimes in our courses when the order of events is (1) first applying a course-level manual post policy, and then (2) importing assignments from another course. 

Quoting my excellent colleague  @lindalee ‌'s explanation:

Content imports with unmuted assignments will override the manual post policy settings. The gradebook will still have a manual post policy setting, but the individual assignments that had been unmuted will have an "automatic" grade posting policy set.

The root cause is API differences between assignments in Old and New Gradebooks. Another of my terrific colleagues,  @RebeccaMoulder ‌, found a workaround last fall to fix up assignments after import:

To fix this (in the newer course after imports), in the course post policy change it to "Automatic" and click "Update," then change the post policies back to "Manual" and click "Update" again. That will push out the updated settings to the copied assignments.

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nancy_lachance
Community Contributor

Thank you so much, Rob. That made sense.  I am suspecting that the cause may have been Blueprint Masters that were using the old gradebook when the course was synced.  We switched on the new gradebook about two weeks after the duplication process occurred because we did not want to make the change during the previous session's grading cycle.  I do now suspect that this could have caused the anomalies - which we should no longer see now that the institution is transitioned to new gradebook completely.

Hi Nancy LaChance,

I'm glad to hear that you are no longer seeing this problem! The good news we've seen is that we've been able to successfully set the gradebook and assignment grade posting policies with a Blueprint sync for courses using Blueprint.

-Linda

woodsdm2
Community Contributor

Thanks for the post - I also saw this behavior and was puzzled.

Does anyone else feel that the practice of having the settings of the imported assignment override the settings of the course they are being imported should be the other way around?  My expectation is that even though I am importing the assignment, it should look and act like I had created the assignment in the course.  I set my courses to have a manual grade release and this is how newly created assignments are setup.  It is very unexpected to have new assignments that are created by importing them from another course to not follow this.

A separate source of confusion is importing assignments from courses that existed before the new gradebook.  Again, I'd expect the grade posting policy to follow the policy of the course it is being imported into, since the setting doesn't exist in the course I am importing from, but I end up with assignments with the posting policy set to auto.

lindalee
Community Champion

David Woods,

You ask some excellent questions here. However, I'm not sure that I agree that imported assignments shouldn't override the course-level policy. I think it depends on whether we think of grade posting settings as being more closely aligned to the assignment or to the gradebook.

For instance, if a teacher has made the decision in a previous iteration of the course that certain assignments' grades should be released automatically -- like with automatically graded low-stakes quizzes or surveys -- then they might reasonably expect those decisions to carry over to the next iteration of the course. This seems like the expected behavior, and we're glad to see that these settings carry over to child sites in Blueprint courses.

The underlying problem that  @RobDitto ‌ explained will hopefully be short-term, and will be addressed with the deprecation of the mute and later copying of courses that have used assignment- and course-level grade posting policies.

In the longer term, I hope that this is addressed through Assignment workflow enhancements for teachers through the ability to specify assignment-specific grade posting and late policies within the assignment settings. But that, of course, doesn't help the inconsistencies we are seeing today.

-Linda