A grade item is a unit where students are assessed through a grade or mark. As such, a grade item is a container for grades and a set of settings applied to these grades. The settings affect the calculation and display of the grades in the grade-book reports and exports.


        Grade items may refer to course activities (e.g. a quiz, an assignment etc.), Outcomes or manual grades.


Grade items and grade-book


The three building blocks of the Grade-book are:

  1. The grade item

  2. The grade category

  3. The grade


Grade items are represented by columns in the grader report.

Within a category, a grade summary is also a grade item itself. Summary grade items for a category can show up in reports, and can be used in the calculation of the grade for the parent category.

Here is a list of the settings that can be edited for a grade item:

  • Item name The name given to this item, for example the assignment name

  • Item info: General information about the grade item. Optional.

  • Grade to pass: Specify the minimum grade a student must achieve to be considered to have passed this item. This must be in real grades, not a percentage. Once this is done, grades will be highlighted in red for fail and green for pass in the grade book.
    Grade to pass may also be specified from quiz set up pages.

  • Grade type: There are 4 grade types:

    1. None - No grading possible

    2. Value - A numerical value with a maximum and minimum

    3. Scale - An item in a list

    4. Text - Feedback only

Only value and scale grade types may be aggregated. The grade type for an activity-based grade item is set on the activity settings page.

  • Overall decimal points: This specifies the number of decimal points to display for each grade. It has no effect on grade calculations, which are made with an accuracy of 5 decimal places.

  • Multiplicator: Factor by which all grades for this grade item will be multiplied, with a maximum value of the maximum grade. For example, if the multiplicator is 2 and the maximum grade is 100, then all grades less than 50 are doubled, and all grades 50 and above are changed to 100.

  • Offset: Number that will be added to every grade for this grade item, after the Multiplicator is applied. (Can be a negative number.)

  • Hidden: Whether this grade item should be hidden from students.

  • Hidden until: An optional date after which the grade item will no longer be hidden (i.e. a grades release date)

  • Locked: Whether or not to lock this grade item. A locked grade item doesn't accept changes to its settings or grades from its related module.

  • Locked after: A date after which the locking will be effective, usually after the grades release date.

Manual grade items

These grade items are created manually from Course administration > Grades > Set up > Categories and items. The Add grade item button is clicked, and the form appears. Several options are available here:

  • Item name: The display name of your grade item

  • ID Number: An arbitrary string of characters used to refer to this grade item in Formulas. If set, it must be unique.

  • Grade type: The type of grade: None (no grading possible), Value (a numerical value), Scale (an item in a list) or Text (arbitrary text).

  • Scale: Which scale to use for grading: available only when the Scale grade type is selected.

  • Maximum grade: The maximum grade that can be given (for scales: the number of items in the scale - 1)

  • Minimum grade: The minimum grade that can be given (for scales: 0)

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