Keywords: assessment, feedback, grading, marking, plagiarism, referencing, reference.
Please refer to guide M09 - Digital Assessment - an Overview for the different phases of digital assessment at UCL.
On this page:
What is it?
As well as letting you collect work submitted by students, Moodle Assignment allows you to mark work, both online and offline. It offers a range of ways to give feedback and a place to record a numeric grade.
Assessment grading in Moodle 3.1 (Video)
Why use it?
- Digital feedback is more reliably comprehensible than handwritten feedback.
- It is available to students when they need to refer to it in their subsequent work.
- Different feedback modes can be combined to improve student engagement including specific annotations, structured marksheets, general comments, video and audio feedback, and feedback files (which allow for annotations on student work, screencasts, spoken feedback etc).
- The feedback can be accessed via MyFeedback, which encourages students to cross-reference and take an integrated view of progress.
- MyFeedback also allows students, personal tutors and other selected staff to follow progress over time.
- Moodle Assignment can handle independent ('blind') marking because it allows inboxes of submissions to be downloaded (preserving anonymity if needed) along with a marksheet.
- Similarly Moodle Assignment can handle offline marking by allowing submissions and marksheet to be downloaded, preserving anonymity if needed.
Who can use it?
Single or multiple markers.
Before I start...
Usually assessors need to hide marks and feedback from students until a provisional date. To do this, refer to guidance on hiding grades is available from moodledocs.
Choosing feedback types
When you are setting up your assignment, you decide on the mode of feedback you will give. In your Assignment's settings and scroll to the Feedback types section, which allows you a combination of feedback modes. Further feedback modes are available in the Grade > Grading method setting.
- Annotations (enabled by default in the Grader) - can be filtered, optionally including a bank of your frequently-made comments. See moodledocs for guidance on annotations.
- Feedback files - you can upload files (these could be the student's original submission with your annotations, or a spoken recording, or a screencast, for example).
- Rubric - a marking grid plotting criteria against levels of achievement. See moodledocs for guidance on Rubric.
- Marking guide - a table allowing marks and feedback for each criterion, optionally including a bank of your frequently-made comments. See moodledocs for guidance on Marking Guide.
- Record audio and video feedback - you can select either option from the text editor. Note. The maximum length of a recording is 2 minutes, but you can record multiple times.
- Feedback comments - summary comments.
- Offline grading worksheet - summary comment and grade.
- Feedback files - (can be in combination with the grading worksheet) upload files e.g. the student's original submission with your annotations, or a spoken recording, or a screencast.
The different feedback types are explained on moodledocs.
How do I mark?
Step 1: Access the Assignment submissions
After the final submission date, go to the Assignment (e.g. via the Assignments link in the Activities box in the right-hand side of your course page).
Click on View all submissions.
This will open the submission inbox or "View all submissions" page. From this page, you can grade, download and upload submissions, and release grades.
The columns within the inbox can be collapsed. This will allow you to only see the ‘useful’ columns when viewing submissions.
Step 2: Prepare submissions for marking - ensure marking is hidden from students
If marking workflow is turned on, you should see a paper status on the View all submissions page. So long as the status is not set to Released, feedback and grades will be hidden from students.
If you didn’t set an end date on Moodle when creating the assignment, choose Lock submissions at the bottom of the page to prevent new uploads.
Step 3: Mark submissions
Option A: To mark offline
- If you want to do offline marking, on the “View all submissions” page, choose the relevant Grading action from the Dropdown box, such as 'Download all submissions' and 'Download grading worksheet'.
- The submissions will be downloaded as a zip file that you can extract to your computer.
- Each student will have their own folder (usually anonymised by number) containing their submitted file(s). You can then annotate their submission, or add further files (for example marking sheets, audio or video feedback files) into the same folder.
- The grading worksheet will contain a row for each student (identified by submission number matching the submission folder number, if anonymous) and you can use this sheet to enter the grade and any general feedback.
Once you have finished marking, re-upload marking by:
- Zip the files back together (Note. zip the student folders together, don't zip the assignment folder which contains the submissions. You can re-name your zipped folder if necessary it should not impact upload).
- Return to the submission inbox, and select "Upload multiple feedback files in a zip" and follow the prompts to upload the zipped folder to the Moodle. Additional files will be attached as feedback to each student's submission.
Option B: To mark online
- Click on Grade in the Assignment to grade each student one-by-one.
- Fill in the feedback box (you can add video and audio feedback using the text editor), add some annotations, and the Grade.
- If you have enabled marking workflow, set the status of the paper to 'Marking completed' to keep a running record of marking.
- Click Save Changes. (Don't tick “notify students” as you should send this all at the same time).
Step 4: Return marks to students
Step 4a: Release feedback
When marking is complete, go back to the Assignment and click View all submissions.
If you have enabled marking workflow:
- you can select all or a subset of submissions using the checkbox. Note. clicking the checkbox at the top of the table, selects all the submissions.
- From the With selected... drop-down menu choose Set marking workflow state and Go.
- In the subsequent page, change the marking workflow state to 'Released' and click 'Save changes'. This will release grades and feedback to students without revealing student identities to markers.
If you have NOT enabled marking workflow:
- From the 'Grading action' drop-down menu, choose “Reveal identities”. It is only now that the grades will be added to the Gradebook (see below).
Make an announcement to inform students
Export Grades from the Gradebook
You can now export the grades, for instance by clicking on the “View gradebook” in the Settings, selecting Export from the top row of tabs, then choosing the desired file format from the 2nd row of tabs, ticking only the assignment(s) that you want exported, and then Download.
Check the grade has been released in the Gradebook
- On your Moodle course, under the This Course tab go to Grades
- Click the User report tab
- Select a random student from the Select all or one user drop-down.
- Select User for the View report as drop-down.
You should now be able to see the grade as it appears to students.
Check in the Gradebook that the assignment and grades are set to visible:
If you have followed the steps provided, grades and feedback should be released to students.
However, occasionally an assignment is hidden in the Gradebook, which will, in turn, hide the assignment grade and feedback.
- On your Moodle course, under the This Course tab go to Grades
- Click the Setup tab
- Make sure you are on the Gradebook setup sub-tab
- Check if your assignment appears in light grey text. If it does, then it is hidden. You can un-hide an assignment by clicking Edit and selecting Show.
Email students that their feedback and grades are available
Send email to all students that the grades and feedback should now be available on Moodle in their "My Feedback" section (they won’t get an email apparently). Instruct students to “download the annotated PDF (if any) rather than just previewing it. Preview sometimes displays comments in a way that obscures the original text”.
- Go to Participants via the Navigation box on the right.
- Select “All students” for “Current role”
- Go to bottom of the page, click “Select All”
- Go to bottom of the page, from the dropdown “with selected users” choose “Send a message”
(These instructions have been adapted from instructions provided by Kris Thielemans from the Faculty of Medical Sciences.)
- One way to allocate markers to work is to put students and markers into Groups.
- However, if you want to allocate markers on the fly e.g. based on area of expertise, or if dates for each marking stage are a bit more fluid, you can use Marking Workflow - see this Workflow video for an overview; guidance on Workflow is available from MoodleDocs.
- Multiple markers who don't need to be independent ('blind') can both mark online - but they need to decide in advance how to enter feedback and marks. Where there is blind marking an approach is for one assessor to mark on Moodle and the other to mark downloaded submissions and use the offline grading worksheet to make notes or give feedback.
- Do take active steps to hide marks and feedback from students - otherwise they show one by one as you mark. Refer to the MoodleDocs guidance on hiding grades.
- Although Moodle Assignment offers several different modes of feedback, feedback is demanding of students. They need to relate the different bits of feedback to each other, to the criteria, to their mark, sometimes to a model answer, and to the decisions they made with their work, sometimes weeks previously. Give focused, concise feedback.
- Uploading an offline grading worksheet will overwrite any existing marks and summary feedback.
- The maximum length for video and Audio feedback is 2minutes. However, you can add multiple video and audio recordings.
Examples and case studies
Elodie Douarin (UCL SSEES) used Moodle Assignment, including rubrics, to help her students relate feedback to assessment criteria. Read her project report.
Questions & Answers