Add option for 5-number summary in student-view of quiz statistics instead of mean/high/low


I would like to add an instructor option to display a 5-number summary in student-view instead of the mean/high/low quiz statistics.

Student here. Pretty much all of my professors let us view the mean/high/low for quizzes.  I believe allowing students to view these statistics is the Canvas default, so a professor must choose to turn it off to prevent students from viewing.  I would like my professors to have the option to show us median, lower quartile (25%), and upper quartile (75%) via box and whisker plots instead. 


Reasons for wanting this feature:

- When classmates fail to turn in an assignment or quiz, those zeros skew the mean lower than the median. Even without zeros, many courses tend towards bimodal or negatively skewed grade distributions.

- A student may see that their scores are near the means and believe they're in the middle of the class. In reality, that student could be struggling significantly more than the majority, save a few failing outliers. Therefore a 5-number summary would help students better identify when they should reach out for extra help.

- While a 5-number summary would be great, even just 3 values - the lower quartile, median, and upper quartile would be more useful than the current mean/high/low view.

Having the high value is also nice because it gives me a good idea about the exam difficulty when the high is not 100%. However, the low seems mostly unnecessary because it often ends up being 0 from someone not turning in the assignment. Or it ends up being incredibly low, and it might be kinder for that student to find out via a direct message from their professor rather than unexpectedly discovering they got the worst test grade at an inopportune moment.


Current student-view: students can access the current mean/high/low by clicking on the checkbox next to their score or by expanding all details on their personal grades page. This is presented in a format almost resembling a box & whisker plot, but it is not. The box edges represent the high and the whiskers are total possible points. Here are a few screenshots of my student view for quizzes with various highs and lows. 

100% = 20 points, 40 points, or 100 points depending on assignment. student view of quiz statistics with a low score of 1student view of quiz statistics with a low score of 1another student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statisticsanother student view of quiz statistics


Instructure Alumni
Instructure Alumni
Status changed to: Open
Community Member

I agree that the zeros ruin the value of these statistics. As soon as a single person drops the course without formally withdrawing, these calculations are useless for the rest of the course. And for single assignments that were not completed, the same issue.


But there is a much simpler and easier solution: How about just excluding zeros from the calculations for median and low?

There's really no reason to ever include zeros in these statistics. Just do it automatically. It would be very simple for the developers to implement.

Status changed to: Archived
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