Set Up GradeBooks Based on Points

When you create assignments such as homework, tests, and quizzes, you assign a category for each type of assignment. You specify the categories you want to include in the course grade and set up automatic grade calculations based on the number of points each of the assignments is worth. When you base a GradeBook on points, you can also specify that an assignment is counted as extra credit.

Important: If you use a Personal Study Plan® in your course, you must base your GradeBook on weighting, because Personal Study Plan categories are not configurable. Only sections of the textbook that are included in the study plan settings page are used in calculations. All chapters containing at least one included section are equally weighted.

You can also set up your GradeBook to be based on weighting instead of the number of points in each assignment. You select different options when you base a GradeBook on weighting. To use weighting, follow the instructions in Set Up GradeBooks Based on Weighting.

Use the Wizard to help you set up your GradeBook options.

Note: You can edit any of your selections by clicking GradeBook and then clicking Settings.
  1. From the menu bar, click Grades and select GradeBook.
  2. If needed, from the Select Class or Page Tools drop-down list, select the class for which you want to set up a GradeBook.
  3. Click Wizard.
  4. In GradeBook Method, select one of the following, then click Next:
    GradeBook Method section of GradeBook wizard
    • Use WebAssign's GradeBook — Specify my GradeBook settings now: creates a new GradeBook for this class.
    • Use WebAssign's GradeBook — Import my settings from another class: uses a GradeBook that is already set up for another class. If this is the first time you have set up a GradeBook, you do not see this option. See Import GradeBook Settings from Other Courses for instructions.
    • If you do not want to use the GradeBook to calculate grades and just want to upload a spreadsheet file, click Use my own spreadsheet as a GradeBook. See Use a Spreadsheet as a GradeBook.
  5. In Assignments to Use in Calculations, select one of the following:
    Assignments to use in calculation showing 2 options, Past Due Assignments Only and All Assignments
    • Past Due Assignments Only: only the assignments where the due date is past are included in the GradeBook calculations.
    Best Practice: Select Past Due Assignments Only so your students see a more realistic view of their current GradeBook grade or score.

    Example: You have an assignment that was due on Monday and another assignment that is due on Thursday. If you view the GradeBook on Tuesday, only the assignment that was due on Monday is calculated in the GradeBook. Thursday's assignment is not included until the due date is past.

    • All Assignments: the scores of all of the assignments visible to your students at the time GradeBook is updated are included in the score calculations regardless of the due date. This option can lead to students seeing a grade that is different from what they might expect, because they have not yet completed all of their assignments. Assignments that are not yet available to students are not factored into the GradeBook calculations.
  6. In Automatic Update, set how you want the GradeBook to update your students' scores.
    Automatic Update section
    • Yes: scores are updated automatically on the selects days and time. If you select automatic updating, you can still update it manually at any time.
    • No: scores are not automatically updated. New scores are added to the GradeBook when you update it, so if you do not update your GradeBook your students will not see their updated, calculated scores reflected in their grade.
    Best Practice: Enable automatic GradeBook updates so your GradeBook is updated for you automatically on a fixed schedule.

    Example: If all of your assignments are due at 1 a.m. on Wednesday, you might want to set the automatic update for 2 a.m. each Wednesday. Your GradeBook is typically updated within an hour of the time you select.

  7. In Categories to Include in GradeBook, select which categories to include in GradeBook calculations.
    Categories to include in GradeBook section

    To add a new category, see Add Categories While Creating a New GradeBook.

  8. In Final Grade Calculation Method, choose one of the following, then click Next:
    Final Grade Calculation Method section
    • I want WebAssign to calculate a final grade based on the category averages.: GradeBook will automatically calculate your students' grades based on the averages you set.
    • I do not want WebAssign to calculate a final grade. (I can upload final grades myself later.): GradeBook will not provide automatic calculations and you will determine the grades yourself.
  9. In Weighting Method, select Skip Weighting. Each category is worth the total number of points of all the assignments.

    Choosing Skip Weighting bases your GradeBook on points. Each assignment in each category is given equal weighting toward the final grade. In-class assignments are worth the same as tests, and so on, for every category you include in your GradeBook.

    Note: After you add an assignment to your GradeBook, you can set more GradeBook options for the assignment including counting that assignment as extra credit, which is available since your GradeBook is based on points. See Edit GradeBook Settings.
  10. Leave each field in Weight of Each Category Toward Final Grade blank, because this does not apply to a GradeBook based on points, then click Next.
    Weight of each category toward final grade section
  11. In Category Averages to Calculate, select the categories for which you want GradeBook to calculate averages, then click Next.
    Category Averages to Calculate section

    For each selected category, the GradeBook calculates that category average and includes it as a part of the final grade. (If you do not include a category, you can manually add the average at another time.)

  12. In Category Average Calculations, select Weighted by Points so that each assignment is weighted by the number of points contained in it, then click Next.
    Calculations section showing Weighted By Points selected for all categories

    This is an average of the number of points. If your student earns 5/10 on Assignment 1 and 70/100 on Assignment 2, the calculated score would be 75/110 points.

    Note: If you excluded a category from average calculations in the previous step, Not Calculated by WebAssign is displayed for that category in the Equal Weights column and on the remaining GradeBook wizard pages.
  13. In Dropping Assignments, select the number of assignments to drop in each category, then click Next.
    Assignments with the lowest scores will be dropped and not count toward the category average.
    Note: No assignments are dropped for the category until more assignment scores are available than the number to be dropped. This ensures that at least one assignment score is used to determine the category score.

    For example, if you choose to drop the two lowest homework scores, no homework scores will be dropped until at least three homework assignments are recorded in the GradeBook.

  14. In Grading Scale, select the grading scale to use in your GradeBook, then click Next.
    Option Description
    Plus / Minus Assigns letter grades with plus and minus. Enter the minimum value your students need to earn to obtain each grade.
    Letter Grade Only Assigns only a letter grade of A, B, C, D, and F. Enter the minimum value your students need to earn to obtain each grade.
    Pass / Fail Assigns a pass or fail grade. Enter the minimum value your students need to earn to pass the course.
    None Skips this step. You can add a grading scale at a later time.

    The page changes based on the grading method you select. A letter grade with a 0 (zero) as the minimum score is the lowest letter grade possible.

  15. In Interim / Final Grade, select the information you want your students to see.
    Option Description
    Final Score Displays a student's interim final score and how it is calculated. This calculated score is current as of the last time the GradeBook was updated.
    Grade Displays a student's grade (as you defined it on the Grading Scale page in the previous step).
    Class Average Displays the class average score.
    Minimum Displays the minimum class score.
    Maximum Displays the maximum class score.
    St Dev Displays the Standard Deviation for the class.
  16. In My Scores Summary (Raw Scores), select which statistics to show your students, determine when they are able to see them, and then click Next.
    My Scores Summary section
  17. Review the GradeBook Summary page.

    In the Calculations column "Weighted By Points" should be displayed.

    GradeBook summary page showing weighted by points selected for all categories in the Calculations column

    If any of the settings are incorrect, click the Back button on your browser to return to the step you want to change. You can also click Settings on your GradeBook page after completing the wizard to change your current settings.

  18. When you are finished setting up your GradeBook, do one of the following:
    • Apply to only this section: if you have a class that contains only one section. A confirmation page is displayed showing the sections to which the GradeBook settings have been applied.
    • Apply to this section and others: if you have a multi-section class, and then select the sections this GradeBook applies to.
      GradeBook wizard summary page showing Apply only to this section and Apply to this section and others options
    Important: After you add an assignment to your GradeBook, you can set more GradeBook options for the assignment, including counting that assignment as extra credit. See Edit GradeBook Settings.