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?

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

  1. 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'. 
  2. The submissions will be downloaded as a zip file that you can extract to your computer. 
  3. 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. 
  4. 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:

  1. 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).
  2. 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

  1. Click on Grade in the Assignment to grade each student one-by-one.
  2. Fill in the feedback box (you can add video and audio feedback using the text editor), add some annotations, and the Grade.
  3. If you have enabled marking workflow, set the status of the paper to 'Marking completed' to keep a running record of marking. 
  4. 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:

  1. 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.
  2. From the With selected... drop-down menu choose Set marking workflow state and Go.
  3. 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:

  1. 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).

Optional steps:

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

  1. On your Moodle course, under the This Course tab go to Grades
  2. Click the User report tab
  3. Select a random student from the Select all or one user drop-down.
  4. 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.

  1. On your Moodle course, under the This Course tab go to Grades
  2. Click the Setup tab
  3. Make sure you are on the Gradebook setup sub-tab
  4. 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”.

  1. Go to Participants via the Navigation box on the right.
  2. Select “All students” for “Current role”
  3. Go to bottom of the page, click “Select All”
  4. 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.)

Further guidance on using Assignment is available from moodledocs.

If you find any inaccurate or missing information feel free to update this yourself (it's a communal wiki).

If you have a specific question please contact the Digital Education team.

Organising markers


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


Further information