What's the Best Way to Set Up Assessment Grading?

September 21, 2018 Nicole White

Assessment Grading in Blackbaud Student Information SystemTM enables schools to assess students on specific developmental skills. Typically used at the lower school level for elementary students, skill-focused grading is set up similar to standard grading (you can read a full description of grading setup in our Grading Guide).

There are two primary differences between setting up standard and assessment grading: assessment skills and assessment grading periods.

Assessment Skills

The first step is to create assessment skills in the software:

Assessment skills are qualitative statements used to assess student performance in the classroom. An assessment skill can be as simple as "Reading ability" or something complex such as "Demonstrates knowledge of literary book themes." Once your assessment skills are created, add them to the report card as you would add grade plan grades. Learn more about assessment skills here.

Assessment Grading Periods

Assessment grading periods act as a link between the assessment skills and the report card. Each grade plan with assessment skills needs to be associated with an assessment grading period. You then select the assessment grading period when adding grades to your report card.

One thing to keep in mind when setting up assessment grading periods and grade plans is that there currently isn't a way to select specific grades attached to an assessment grading period to appear on a report card. For example, if you have Quarter 1 grades and comments but would like these to appear separately on a report card, you’d want to create unique assessment grading periods and grade plans for each. Learn more about assessment grading periods here.

Grading is completely unique for each school, and you should work with your administration and teachers to determine what works best for your school. Our support team is always happy to answer any specific questions about grading setup, and if you want help from a Blackbaud consultant, you can always arrange this with your account executive.

About the Author

Nicole White

Nicole White joined Blackbaud in 2014 as a member of our dynamic K-12 Support Team. She currently serves as a Technical Writer for Blackbaud's education management products on our Content Design and Development Team, where she loves to continue helping schools navigate the K-12 software—albeit in a very different capacity from her days manning the support chat. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband, pit-mix, and small, grey cat.

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