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  1. Moodle
  2. MDL-66567

MUA Proposal: Focus on the Grading Workflows for Instructors



    • Improvement
    • Resolution: Deferred
    • Minor
    • None
    • 3.9
    • Gradebook


      This is a problem-based proposal, in that I hope to outline some pain points in Moodle grading, and that this could be a focus to collaborate on with the Moodle UX team, Moodle HQ, and the Moodle Users Association.


      • Project size: Large
      • Audience: Institutions that use the gradebook
      • Target users: Everyone with Grading permissions 


      To address some long standing pain points in the faculty user experience grading with Moodle. To identify issues for the UX team to focus on, but to leave the project requirements loose enough so that user testing can happen and the project can be shaped by authentic user testing.

      Issue 1: Grading Workflow

      There is not a clear “grading workflow” in Moodle where a faculty member can look at assessments (assignments, forums, manually graded quiz questions, and more) that have been submitted and require manual grading. There is not a quick and easy way that faculty members can identify where they have grading to do, grade that item, and then quickly and easily move onto the next.


      User Stories:

      • As an instructor I should be able to easily access a list of submitted assessments that need action by the instructor.
      • As an instructor, a link to the “needs grading” area should be included in the grading interface so that an instructor can work their way through assignments.

      There have been other incomplete attempts to solve this issue over the years. I believe each could be improved into what Moodle needs, and as long as the user stories above are accomplished would defer to the judgement of the UX team:

      • The dashboard is probably the closest. One issue with the dashboard is that only assignments that have due dates or a remind me to grade date will ever show up on the dashboard. Could this be improved where assignments with dates are prioritized at the top of the dashboard and assignments without dates are simply listed below? If those blocks functionality is set based on calendars can a new block be created with items that need to be graded? There are four different dates that need to be set for every assignment, could this solution steamline that by getting rid of the remind me to grade date?
      • Assignments, Forums, Quizzes each have a page in Moodle that shows all of the activities. This is only available if you have blocks in your class and have the Activities block. With Moodle’s de-emphasis on blocks, could these links be made available in another way that is convenient to grading? Perhaps creating an “All activities” page that can be filtered by type? Could additional columns be added to teachers views that make it usable for grading like submitted / total students / needs grading? Could those numbers be turned into live links that would bring faculty directly to grading screens?

      Issue 2, Automatically graded events (resubmitted MDL-61433):

      User Stories: ** 

      • As an instructor, I should be able to assign (a score) to students that did not attempt an automatically graded activity by the cut off date.
      • As an instructor, I should be able to define what score is given to students that do not attempt or allow for no action.
      • As an instructor or students, I should be able to see both (a score) for automatically graded actvities and that it was not attempted.


      I have modified Tonia Malone’s user stories in two ways from her proposal in MDL-61433. First, her original proposal used 0 instead of (a score). I believe this change allows for instructors to follow their own policies. Some schools have policies against giving 0s for non-attempts and encourage giving a 50 instead. The 50 is still a failing grade and digs the student a less deep hole to get out of. Not assigning any grade should also be an option for those that want to continue the current behavior. I have also incorporated Tim Hunt and Moodle HQs feedback from the forum that in addition to a grade, a tag that says (no submission) is important data for the student and teacher.

      Currently, grades of zero for automatically graded activities can only be added as gradebook overrides. There has to be a different way! Understanding what a gradebook override is difficult for the average user. Which leads us into: 

      Issue 3: Simplify, more clearly label, or remove Gradebook overrides.

      The current gradebook override system is very difficult for faculty members to understand when they have messed something up. As HQ focuses on the gradebook this cycle, a critical look at overrides needs to happen making it more transparent to faculty members or eliminated.

      User Stories:

      • As an instructor, I should be able to remove a gradebook override from anywhere a grade can be entered.

      Experienced Moodle Administrators know that faculty unknowingly using gradebook overrides are a major usability concern that impact them regularly.


        Issue Links



              Unassigned Unassigned
              ebeck@wells.edu Ed Beck
              8 Vote for this issue
              16 Start watching this issue




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