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5 Top Tips for setting up Canvas assignments

The following post provides the top 5 recommended settings to consider regarding the set-up of Canvas assignments.

1. Hide totals in student grades summary

By default, students can see their grade total column in Canvas. That means that Canvas calculates the students total based on the marks entered throughout the semester. This can be misleading for students for example if they miss an assignment. It is recommended to “Hide totals in students grades summary” to avoid any misunderstanding.

Update this by going to your course “Settings”, “Course details”. At the bottom of the page, click “More options”. Then select “Hide totals in student grades summary” and “Update course details” to save your changes as shown in the video below.

Further information:
How do I hide totals in my students’ grade summaries?

2. Set Grade Posting Policy

By default, the gradebook is set to the “Automatic” release of student feedback and marks, it is recommended this is updated to “Manual” which means the grades and feedback will be hidden until you manually release them.

Image shows a screenshot of the Canvas Grade Posting Policy

Further information:
How do I select a grade posting policy for a course in the Gradebook?

3. Create Assignment Groups & Weighting

Canvas provides the functionality to set-up groups for the summative assessment components of your module. Canvas then calculates the final grade based on these assignment groups and weightings. This also creates efficiency when taking an export of the gradebook at the end of semester for the grade roster.

Image demonstrating the Canvas assignment groups and weighting

Further information:
How do I weight the final course grade based on assignment groups?
How do I add an assignment group in a course?

4. Mark all assessed elements of work out of 100

Queen’s marking policy states that all assessed elements of work should be marked to an integer on a scale of 0-100. To abide with university policy, this should be set up in Canvas assignment settings by adding 100 in “Points” field and also selecting to “Display grade as: points”.

Further information:
Queen’s Mark Schemes And Classifications
How do I add or edit points for an assignment?

5. Set-up Turnitin settings within Canvas

Turnitin is integrated with Canvas and this allows classes, assignments and both staff and student user accounts to be created automatically in Turnitin. The integration also allows staff and students to create, submit and view plagiarism reports, grades and feedback without ever having to leave Canvas.

We recommend you review the Turnitin within Canvas  Staff Guide for full details regarding the use of Turnitin in Canvas. We also have numerous guidance available, links are provided below in further information.

Further information:
Student Guide – How to use to Turnitin in Canvas
Student submitted directly in Turnitin
Using Turnitin within Canvas – common queries
Top 5 potential assessment set-up pitfalls

Why not join one of our Assignment Essential sessions for the opportunity to discuss assignment scenarios specific to your module.
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