One of the most critical features of any LMS or virtual learning environment is its Gradebook: the source of truth for a learner’s standing across all of the course assessment items which determine their final grade. Not surprisingly, VidaNovaVLE™’s Gradebook module is robust and flexible, just like the many features we have highlighted to date, as are its Grading capabilities. Here are just a few of the features VidaNovaVLE™’s Gradebook boasts:
There are four grading types available in VidaNovaVLE™:
Most course and session activities listed in our last post can be automatically graded by VidaNovaVLE™ or by a grader, with grades automatically stored in the Gradebook. Overriding grades is also possible if needed.
Grades can be manually entered, imported, and exported.
Grade items, whether activities or imported grades, can be grouped into categories to permit you to calculate a total grade for the group in a variety of ways. The aggregated grade for each category of items can be calculated by choosing ten different options, including mean, weighted mean, median, smallest grade, or highest grade, to name a few. Additionally, you can choose to drop a number of the lowest grades and keep a number of the highest grades in a grouping of items.
Choose between three views for grouped items: grades only, aggregates to see the total only, or full view to see both. Scrolling is smooth and stable vertically and horizontally; your learner list will be constantly visible as you scroll. You can sort your columns and also choose to view the grades of one learner or a single grade item for all learners. If your course uses groups, you can filter by learner group. The ability to search by a learner’s first or last name is also supported.
Use the Quick grading and Quick feedback features to grade several learners at once. Grades that have been changed manually will be highlighted for you.
The Gradebook can be set up so that it permits grades greater than 100%. Grades submitted through activities can be curved using the Offset or Multiplicator features.
Specify the minimum grade a learner must achieve to pass an assessment item. Failing grades will be highlighted in red if below the pass threshold and green for passing in the Gradebook. Setting a passing grade may be connected with activity completion and access restriction such that a learner will not be able to access a follow-up activity until they have passed the grade item.
Use letters or Statements to represent a range of grades. Different Letters or Statements (e.g., Pass, Pass Honours, etc.) can be set at the course level. Grade calculations are made with an accuracy of 5 decimal places, and grade letters are assigned accordingly.
Standard scales can be made available to all courses, and if permitted, custom scales can be created at the individual course level. Scales may be used in Forums, Glossaries, and Assignment activities for rating and grading. Optionally, choose to associate points with the scale when grading an activity.
Use a formula to determine grades based on other grade items, following the pattern of formulas/functions in popular spreadsheet programs (e.g., Conditional (IF) operators and logical operators (AND, OR).
Hide grades from learners for an unlimited period of time (until they are manually released) or set to be released on a particular date and time. Grades can be locked to prevent any further changes.
Create and use Marking Guides or Rubrics to grade Assignment activities. The Marking Guide allows graders to enter a comment per criterion and a mark up to a maximum. If a grader often uses the same comments when grading, they can be stored in a frequently used comments bank for quick input while grading. The Rubric feature allows graders to select a level of achievement, and thus the numeric grade associated with the level of achievement, to grade an assignment. The raw rubric score is calculated as a sum of all criteria grades. The final grade is calculated by comparing the actual score with the worst/best possible score that could be received. Feedback can also be provided, and files can be uploaded to share with the learner.
When it comes to grading Assignments, submissions can be annotated directly in line and downloaded; a grade can be entered, and individual feedback can be given. Graders can also choose to grade offline if they’d prefer to download the grading list to edit it in a program such as Excel. They can then upload the spreadsheet, confirm the changes, and the grades and comments will be transferred to the item in the Gradebook. Optionally, graders can upload files with feedback when marking (e.g., graded learner assignments, documents with comments, a completed marking guide, or spoken audio feedback).
When grading, choose to hide learners’ names and show randomly generated participant numbers.
Keep grades and feedback hidden until you are ready to release them to learners, show your progress in grading, or coordinate multiple graders/grade approval before release. Grading phases in the Workflow are:
Select specific learners, grade items, and graders and view the grading history for particular dates. The Grade History report will display the date and time, learner details, grade item, original grade, revised grade, grader, source of grade, and more.
As you can see, the Gradebook and Grading features within VidaNovaVLE™ are incredibly flexible and well-suited to meet the needs of any professional program. As we weave our proprietary Taxonomy Management module throughout these features, other features we’ve already highlighted, and more to come, we are working to position VidaNovaVLE™ to be the dominant player in health sciences education.