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Community Participant

How do I create a grading scheme that does not use percentages?

I just want the total for one assignment to show how many times the student contributed a discussion post. It should be trivial to change the total for that assignment to total points rather than percentage, but there does not seem to be any way to change how CANVAS generates total scores.

6 Replies
Community Champion

Hello  @jean-k-gordon ‌ - You can certainly set an assignment to display as points rather than as a percentage when creating (or editing) just one assignment, but from the context of your question I am guessing that what you might really mean is that for an assignment GROUP (such as all Discussions within the Discussions group of assignments) that you cannot do this, and in that you are correct.  While you can change the TOTAL gradebook column to display points rather than a percentage, that will not work with weighted assignments if you have them.

There was a now-archived feature idea in the Cold Storage area of the Community that requested this, but I cannot find any current one.  You may want to think of creating this as a Feature Idea if I am reading into your intent correctly.

And finally, you CAN get the total value of an assignment group if you decide to download your gradebook. To be sure it's an added step, but the resulting CSV file will have a column called [Assignment Group] Current Score that shows the ongoing point total for that group.

I hope this helps a bit!

Community Champion

There is a long discussion related to grading, percentages, and points here; although it started out as a discussion about percentage rounding, it turned into a larger discussion about grading, about grading schemes, and about points versus percentages: 

I think the proposal  @kblack ‌ is referring to may be one I had proposed (I use a strictly points-based, no-percentage approach, and because of the role student choice plays in my courses, I cannot do a percentage-out-of scheme; all my students always have 100% as their score). I'm now waiting for the new Gradebook to see how that is going to work.

Although I think I will go salvage my proposal from Cold Storage, though, and re-post it in my blog, just so I can link to it, since things are not easily linkable in Cold Storage. 

Here is the feature request I had proposed. I am not quite sure I understand  @jean-k-gordon ‌'s question about points versus percentages (I display all my assignments as points in the Gradebook, and the students see their total points)... but it is indeed true that the grading schemes in Canvas are percentage-based. I would definitely like to see the chance to use the Gradebook more creatively for grading that does not follow a percentage-out-of approach, along with other, more flexible data tracking based on each instructor's sometimes unique needs: 

Community Coach
Community Coach

Hello  @jean-k-gordon ‌...

While I don't have an answer for you myself, I wanted to check in with you because we've not heard from you since you first posted this question back on March 31, 2017.  Have you had an opportunity to review the replies from  @kblack ‌ and laurakgibbs‌?  If so, did any of those responses help to answer your question?  Or, are you still looking for some help with your initial query?  If one of the above replies did help to answer your question, please feel free to mark it as "Correct".  However, if you are still seeking help, please let members of the Canvas Community know that by posting a message below.  For now, since we've not heard from you in quite some time and since there hasn't been any new activity in this thread since April 1st, I'm going to mark your question as "Assumed Answered", but that won't prevent you or others from posting additional replies and/or questions related to this topic below.  I hope that's okay with you.  Looking forward to hearing from you soon, Jean!

Community Participant

The question was answered by Ken Black (not possible to convert assignment group totals from percentages to points), but I would not consider it resolved. I echo Laura Gibbs request for a more flexible gradebook that allows different ways of grading. Ken's suggestion to download the gradebook doesn't solve my main problem, which has to do with how students view their grades.

Community Participant

I see that this discussion is several years old, but I have a similar frustration---I would like to be able to create a grading scheme without any numerical values because I want to start using contract grading. Although there is a Complete/Incomplete option on assignments, everything is still reflected in terms of percentages in the gradebook because you can't create a purely qualitative course grading scheme. So many professors are moving to an ungrading or specifications grading practice, and it would be terrific if the LMS features would accommodate this evolution.