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Getting Started with bCourses: Assignments & Grading (Instructors)


2.0 - Updated on 2020-05-12 by Miles Lincoln

1.0 - Authored on 2015-07-30 by Paula Miranda

Setting up your assignments and Gradebook are some of the most important tasks when using bCourses as a tool in your class. This article for instructors provides a checklist for creating and using graded assignments, and links to specific help articles with step-by-step information that will help you set them up and use them throughout the semester.

Learn about Assignments

First, take a minute to read about Assignments. What is considered an Assignment? What can they be used for? Where they are kept?

See this Canvas Guide for more information: What are Assignments for instructors?

The bCourses Assignment Workflow

Once you've learned a little more about what assignments are and how they can be used, this suggested workflow can help you break down the process of setting up assignments in your course (click on the Full Screen option to view larger):


1. Create Assignment Groups

Are your grades weighted? Do you have, for example, a final that is worth more than your homework assignments? If so, you may want to create Assignment Groups to organize them, as well as weight their grades. Review these Canvas Guides:

2. Create individual assignments

Allow students to submit digital files of their work using bCourses. Even if you are having students turn in papers in-class, create an Assignment in bCourses in order to create a column in the Gradebook where you can enter grades. Review these Canvas Guides: 

3. Publish assignments

To publish an assignment, click the assignment’s Publish button, or the unpublished icon, see screenshots below. The button will change from gray to green.

Screenshot of Unpublished and Published button on an assignment


Screenshot of Published and Unpublished icons from Assignments list

4. Weight Assignment Groups

You can weight final grades based on assignment groups. Selecting this option assigns a weight to each assignment group, not the assignments themselves. Within each assignment group, a percentage is calculated by dividing the total points a student has earned by the total points possible for all assignments in that group.

5. Mute Grades

Are you still working on grading assignments and not yet ready for students to see their grades? By using a manual grade posting policy, you can control grades for an assignment so that students are not notified of changes/updates to their grade. This functionality was previously known as "muting." In addition to assigning this status to individual assignments, you can now apply it at a course level, so that all grades will need to be manually posted, and it is not necessary to enable the setting for individual assignments. See this Canvas Guide: How do I use posting policies in a course?

6. (Students submit assignments)

7. and 8. Review and Grade

Students have submitted their assignments- where do you go to grade them?

If students uploaded their assignments into bCourses, you have a couple of options for reviewing and grading them:

If students submitted paper copies in class, go to the Gradebook and enter grades there. See this Canvas Guide: How do I enter and edit scores in the Gradebook?

9. Post Grades (Un-mute)

Optional: Export to E-Grades

You can export the Gradebook into a format that can be uploaded to the Registrar's E-Grades system. See this bCourses help article for step-by-step instructions on this process: From bCourses to E-Grades


These steps are the basic workflow for setting up and using Assignments and the Gradebook. Do you have more specific, detailed questions? First, please search the Canvas Instructor Guide, or our bCourses Knowledge Base. If you find that you are not able to find the help article that you need, submit a Help Request form.

For more on Getting Started with bCourses, see these articles: