M11a - How to apply a grade calculation in the Gradebook

You will find this guide useful if you have a course with several assessments that each contribute to the total grade for the course. However, the proportion or weight that each assignment should contribute to the total varies. Hence, you need know how to either apply a calculation for this or change the weightings applied to each assessed item so that the course total reflects the different contributions to the Course total that they make. This page details both methods, but applying a grade calculation is the simpler and recommended method.

Step-by-step guide

  1. Click on Grades in the top course menu
  2. Choose Gradebook setup in the drop-down menu
  3. Find Course total at the bottom of the page, click the three dots and the choose Edit calculation under the Actions column .
  4. Under ID numbers, assign a name to each assignment whose grade contributes to the overall grade/course total. Avoid numbers to make the calculation formula look less confusing. E.g. "Task 1 - Agency Articles" could become simply "Agency Articles", which also avoids the hyphen and confusion with the subtraction sign.
  5. Once the names have been entered, click Add ID Numbers.
  6. Now in the Calculation section of the page, write the formula as follows, where [[Agency Articles]] is one of the assignments' ID numbers and .05 is its desired weighting of 5%: =([[Agency Articles]]*.05)+([[Agency Position]]*.05)+([[Essay Task]]*0.9)
  7. Click Save changes.
  8. Check that the calculation has worked by clicking on Grades in the top course menu and choosing Gradebook setup in the drop-down menu then viewing the Course total .

How to apply weightings to grades in the Gradebook

For example: A course has 7 graded assignments as tabulated below:

Assessed itemMarked out ofProportion contributedWeighting
Quiz 0100%0.00
Quiz 1102%0.02
Quiz 2102%0.02
Quiz 3153%0.03
Quiz 4153%0.03

Note that:

  1. The maximum grade that can be achieved for the course is 100%. Hence the sum of the proportion each assessment contributes to the Course total must be 100% and that of the weightings 1.0.
  2. Quiz 0 is a practice quiz and does not contribute to the final grade. Hence it has a 0 weighting.

Step-by-step guide

By default Moodle's gradebook typically assumes each assessed item carries the same weight, which in the case of the example above means that each of the assessed items would contribute 100/7 = 14.285% each to the Course total. If there were just two assignments then each would contribute 50%.

  1. Click on Grades in the top course menu and choose Gradebook setup in the drop-down menu
  2. Click on  Edit  for the top level folder (usually the course name) under the Actions column click on the three dots and then Edit category.
  3. On the  Grade category  screen click on the Aggregation dropdown menu. For more information on the other Aggregation options, please refer to documentation on the Moodle Docs. 
  4. Select ' Weighted mean of grades'  from the Aggregation  dropdown list. This sets the aggregation method for the named Category (if there is one - although there isn't in your case. So it sets it for the whole gradebook).
  5. Click on Show more… and decide whether you want to Exclude empty grades (click on the ? To find out what it is and does)
  6. On the same screen in the section titled Category total , click on Show more… and change the Overall decimal points if you want the grades to be rounded off whole numbers.
  7. Click on the Save changes button at the bottom of the screen. This will return you to the ' Gradebook setup ' screen where you will now see a column headed ' Weights '.
  8. In the text boxes in the Weights column change the 1.0 value to the appropriate 0.x value for each assessment.
  9. Ensure that these new values add up to exactly 1.0.
  10. Click on the Save changes button at the bottom of the screen and the Course totals should now reflect the new weightings. ( Note that the percentages awarded each assessment are shown rather than their weighted contribution to the course total for a student).

Adapted from: <https://moodle.yorku.ca/instructors/training/gradebook_assigning_weights_to_grade_items.html>