The first thing you should be doing as a teacher is setting up your grade book for the upcoming year.  This should be done before adding content to your page and definitely before adding any assignments to your course.

To do this you’ll want to navigate to your course and click the Gradebook tab within the course navigation

This will open up your grade book. Click the Edit Setup button in the grade book to begin setting up your grade book.

 

Set by: Year or Marking Period?

 

Setting up by Year:

This set up method allows you to set up your grade book with the same assignment types, weight distributions and calculation method for the entire year across all marking periods.  This option also allows you to display and view the Year Cumulative for students in addition to seeing the Marking Period Cumulative.  Using this method will also display a (GB) to the teacher when they are creating assignments which assignment types they have used in the grade book as well as set defaults for the individual assignment types (Max Points)

 

Setting up by Marking Period:

This option allows you to have different set ups for each marking period.  You can different calculation methods, different assignment types and distribute the weights differently per marking period.

 

Choosing a Calculation Method:

One of the most important steps in your Grade book set up, this portion is responsible for how the student’s grade is calculated, what factors are included in the calculation and ultimately how you will distribute points on your assignments.

 

Below is a breakdown of each calculation method

 

Total Points - The students’ cumulative grade is based on the total points earned, divided by the total points attempted.  Select this option if the cumulative grade is based on straight points, and you do not take into account the type of assignment when calculating the grade.

Basically if you assign point values that vary from 5 pts to 100 pts for assignments and they assignments are not weighted, this is the calculation method you want

 

Total Points with Weight - The students’ cumulative grade is based on the total points earned, divided by the total points attempted within each assignment type.  The assignment type cumulatives are then averaged together based on their weights.  Select this option if the cumulative grade is based on something like 30% homework, 40% quizzes, and 30% exams, but each assignment within those categories is worth varying points.

 

Lastly there is the Percentages method: Assignments are averaged together within each assignment category, the average is used to calculate the cumulative grade based on the weights the teacher has entered.  Select this option if the cumulative grade is based on something like 30% homework, 40% quizzes, and 30% exams, but each assignment within those categories should count equally. It's important to note, if you are choosing to use a Letter Grade Scale with this calculation method, to check with your administrator to ensure the scale has a max value of 100 pts. 

 

Adding your assignment types:

Once you have chosen your calculation method you can then add the assignments you would like to use throughout the year to be included in your Grade Book calculations.  While in the edit set-up, click the Edit button in the upper right of the School Year or Marking Period (depending on how you set your grade book up) and check off the assignments you would like to add to your set up.  Don’t worry, if you miss one, you can always add more later.

 

Letter Grade Scale - The letter grade scale works on a fixed point assignment value set by the administrator. These scales are meant to allow teachers to select an A, B, C, etc when entering grades in their grade book instead of entering a numerical value and do not have anything to do with Grades as they are shown on the Report Card (see Grade Translations) 

**If you notice that your student’s cumulative is not correct and the assignment is using a letter grade scale then the letter grade scale chosen might not be set up correctly and you’ll want to check with your administrator to make sure the point value of the letter grade scale goes up to a possible 100 points.

After adding the assignments, if you chose either the Total Points with Weight or Percentages, you’ll need to enter each assignments weight for your course.  It’s very important that your weight percentages add up to 100%.

Number to Drop (per marking period) - In this text box you can enter the number of assignments you would like to be dropped from a students grade.  The system will automatically drop that number of assignments (provided there are 1 or more assignments above the number you entered) with the lowest grades from the student’s calculation for each marking period as designated.  It’s recommended you adjust this number at the end of each term based on it’s need.

Number to Drop (by year) - In this text box you can enter the number of assignments you would like to be dropped from a students grade.  The system will automatically drop that number of assignments (provided there are 1 or more assignments above the number you entered) with the lowest grades from the student’s calculation for the year and not by marking period.  It’s recommended you adjust this number for the total number of assignments needed to be dropped for the entire year.

 

Default Max Points - You can put the default max points for each assignment type so when you create a new assignment and choose the assignment type, the max points will be filled in with this value by default.

If you were using Percentages, this value would always be 100.