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Surveyor

Is there a way for teachers to see a list of assignments that need to be graded?

I received the following email from a teacher in my school this morning....

"Can you make a suggestion to Canvas? When I look at the assignments page, can they add a feature where I can see which assignments have work that need grading? Rahter than going to to the homepage for the class, writing down which assignments I have to grade and then going to assignments? I wish I saw a red #4 next to an assignment telling me I have 4 submissions to grade."

I am surprised that there isn't a setting or feature to enable this already.  I guess it would be some sort of "To Do" or "Assignments to Grade" list.  The students already have a list of things/assignments to complete, so this is kind of the same idea.  Can someone please shed some light on this?  Thanks.

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Lamplighter

rpsimon‌, the To Do list already exists, and I gather that's what this teacher references when she talks about the course home page. It displays exactly what she wants. Everything—not just what's on the assignments list, but everything in the course that needs grading—is displayed there, along with a number in a circle that indicates how many need grading. It's depicted in the View Sidebar Sections section of How do I use the Course Home Page as an instructor? The to-do items are clickable, so rather than writing these down and going to assignments, she can click on each one and start grading.

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Surveyor

sanders@indiana.edu‌ I shared your reply with the teacher and this was her response.....
Yes, but it’s not ideal. It takes you to the assignment on the same tab, not a new one. Then I have to go back to the course home page for the next assignment. And I do it for two classes. It seems inefficient. 

Any thoughts about that?  Thanks so much.

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Lamplighter

rpsimon‌, when I was teaching, my workflow for grading was to navigate to the To Do list on the course home page, right click the first item and select Open Link in New Tab (to launch Speedgrader), grade all of the outstanding submissions for that assignment, close the Speedgrader tab, refresh the course home page, and repeat the process for the next assignment on the list.  I typically graded over 100 writing assignments every week and had at least three future assignments open to students at any time, so it was not unusual to have multiple different assignments to grade at any given time.

I found this process to be thoroughly efficient. I'll also note that I visited the Assignments page in my course only once, before the start of the semester, to set the assignment group weights and grading rules for the course. I never looked at it again—no need. 

This teacher might not be aware of how to change the settings in Speedgrader so that the assignments with submissions that need grading float to the top of the list. That's explained in How do I sort the student list in SpeedGrader?‌ If she hasn't yet done that, she'll find that it speeds up the grading process considerably once in Speedgrader.

Last, she mentions that she is teaching two courses. I did too! She can use the same process, except that when multiple courses are involved, she'd initiate the grading process directly from the Dashboard, which displays a unified To Do list across all the courses in which a user is enrolled. That is depicted in How do I use the Dashboard as an instructor? (see the To Do list at the right in the View Dashboard section).

Of course, one's preferred workflows are personal and subjective, but I can vouch for the fact that this workflow worked really well for me over five years of teaching multiple courses in Canvas. I hope you will encourage this instructor to venture into the Canvas Community herself and ask questions of her fellow teachers to ask about their strategies for teaching and learning in Canvas.

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Surveyor

I will share this with her.  Thanks, sanders@indiana.edu‌!

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Surveyor

Thanks!

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Lamplighter

You're so welcome, as always,rpsimon!

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Lamplighter

Oh, one other thing (I almost forgot, because this app didn't exist when I was teaching): maybe she'd like the workflow in the Canvas Teacher app on her mobile device. Here are the instructions for iOS: How do I grade an assignment submission in the Teacher app on my iOS device? 

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