Grade Journals

[Printer Icon] Print this article

You can grade participation in journals for individuals and groups.

When you enable grading, a column is created automatically in the Grade Center. You grade students’/participants' journal entries from the journal topic page. All of an individual student’s/participant's entries and comments appear as you determine the grade. The grades show immediately in the Grade Center.

You access the journal topic page in the following ways:

  • In the journals tool, access a journal. In the sidebar, click the drop-down with your name to access all course members.
  • On the Needs Grading page, access a journal’s contextual menu and click Grade All Users.
  • In the Grade Center, locate the column for the journal you want to grade. Move the mouse pointer over a cell containing the needs grading icon—the exclamation mark—to access the journal’s contextual menu. Click Grade User Activity.

You can decide whether or not students/participants can view their grades and feedback in My Grades by editing the column information in the Grade Center.

When you edit an assigned grade from the journal topic page, the Grade Center is updated.

Change a Topic From Graded to Ungraded

You cannot change a graded journal topic to ungraded. You need to delete the graded journal topic from the Journals listing page and the Grade Center, and create a new ungraded topic.

Alternatively, to retain entries, set the journal's Grade Center column to not be included in calculations. In essence, the journal continues to be considered graded by the Grade Center, but any results or grades assigned are ignored.

The Journal Topic Page

The journal topic page is divided into two main sections. You can view the entries in the content frame. In the sidebar, you can view information about the journal topic or entry, expand the Index, grade the entry if the journal is gradable, and select an individual user's name to view his or her entries alone in the content frame.

Journal Topic Page

A. In the sidebar, you can expand the Journal Details section to display information about the current selection, including the number of entries and comments. Click the right-pointing arrow to collapse the sidebar for more viewing room for entries. Click the four arrows to view the journal entries and sidebar in full screen.

B. Below the action bar, the Journal Instructions are expanded by default. You can minimize them.

C. To view all course members, click the down-pointing arrow next to the user's name to view a list and select a member. The selected member’s entries appear in the content frame. Use the left- and right-pointing arrows to navigate to the previous or next student. Optionally, click Show Empty Journals.

D. For graded journals, icons designate the status of a user’s activity. The needs grading icon—the exclamation mark—indicates that a user has met the minimum activity for grading you set for the journal. The in progress icon appears when a user has some activity, but has not yet met the minimum number required to trigger needs grading status.
E. In the grading sidebar, provide a grade and feedback for the student.

F. The Index section displays the titles of the entries created by an author during the selected time period. Click the minus sign to collapse the title list.

Grade Journal Entries for Individuals

You can begin the grading process for journals from the Grade Center, the Needs Grading page, and the Course/Organization Tools section in the Control Panel.

While specifying journal settings, if you did NOT select the Show participants in needs grading status box and select a minimum number of entries, the needs grading icon will not appear in the Grade Center, on the journal topic page, and items do not appear on the Needs Grading page.

The in progress icon shows in the Grade Center cell and in a journal:

  • For student/participant activity that does not meet the minimum number you set.
  • If you did not select the Show participants in needs grading status check box.

Use the following steps to grade journal entries:

1. Access the journal topic page and click the drop-down list with your name to access all course members. Click a user's name with a number. The user's journal entry or entries open in the content frame.

2. Type a point total in the Grade box. If you associated a rubric for this graded journal, expand and complete the rubric. To edit an existing grade, click in the Grade box and change the grade.

3. Optionally, type Feedback for the student/participant. In the Add Notes section, make notes that appear only to you and the grader role. The icon for Click to open full content editor gives you access to all the content editor functions.

4. Click Submit to add the grade, feedback, and grading notes to the Grade Center.

Grade Journal Entries for Groups

You grade a group journal using the same steps as for individuals. When the entries are submitted, all group members' names appear with the exclamation mark, the needs grading icon.

When you add a grade for a group journal, the grade is automatically given to all the members of the group and is populated in the corresponding column in the Grade Center for each group member. All members are assigned the same grade, even if a member did not contribute, although you can change this grade.

Group Journal Grading

On the journal topic page, you can read all the entries for a group journal and add one grade. Users with entries that need grading are indicated with the needs grading icon—the exclamation mark—in the Grade Center and on the journal topic page in the All Group Membersdrop-down list. In addition, the group journal is listed on the Needs Grading page.

Students/Participants can view their group journal grades in My Grades and on the group journal topic page by selecting their names.

Change an Individual Member’s Group Grade

You can assign an individual group member a different grade than the group by editing the member's grade. If you change a group member’s grade, and you assign a new group grade, the new group grade will not affect the individual’s new grade. Individual members only see one grade, not what each member earned. The individual’s new grade will not appear to the other group members.

In the grading sidebar, click the pencil icon to change the group grade for a member. Type a new grade and click the check mark icon to save it. This grade becomes an override grade.

Individual Group Grade

The group grade and the individual group member’s edited grade also appear in the Grade Center. Grayed out cells appear in the group journal column for course members who are not part of the group.

Revert a Member’s Edited Grade

You can revert a member’s edited grade to the original group grade, which all group members received.

In the grading sidebar, click the pencil icon for the user with the edited grade. Click the left-pointing arrow to change the grade to the original group grade. The override icon is removed. The change also appears in the Grade Center.