Customizing The Blackboard Grade Center: Advanced Features, presented by Linda Larson
Today’s presentation at the NCCFA 2013 involved some great materials about blackboard, especially customizing the blackboard grade center. The blackboard grade center is a heavily-utilized area of Wake Tech’s classes- whether they be seated, online, or hybrid classes. I’ve been using the grade center for calculations since 2006, but today’s session was a chance to see a bit more of the features available in the latest upgrades to blackboard.
Many of the features within blackboard I must admit that I already knew how to use. However, there was a great feature that Linda Larson pointed out, allowing blackboard grades fitting certain thresholds to be colored within the grade center. This allows grades for students who (in my case) get 60 or less to have their grade bar turn pink and for those receiving 50 or less on an assignment have their grade bar turn red.
While this seems like it might be a train wreck, what you are doing is setting up a visual record which will quickly and easily let you see who is dropping or failing in a classroom.
The latter half of the class was set up in a way to highlight the rubric functions of blackboard. While I knew a lot about using the rubric functions of blackboard for grading, there were several people who were unfamiliar with the process. Rubrics are great- if you feel like you cannot deliver bad news to students or you simply need things to reflect the objective nature of the grading platform, it allows you to assign gradepoint values or percentages to the pieces of an assignment along with commentary.
I had a chance to highlight some of my own grading rubrics in the presentation, and that made me smile. Its always nice to look professional or like I know what I’m doing. 🙂