Courses: Grade Setup


Use the Grade Setup area to adjust grade settings for your course. In this area, you can manage your Grading Categories, create scales and rubrics, adjust the weights of your grading periods, and enable Final Grade Settings for your student reports.

To access Grade Setup, click Grade Setup on the left side of your course.


Note: Based on the permissions in place at your school or organization, you may not have edit access to all areas of this page. Please reach out to your Support Contact or System Administrator with any questions.

Grading Categories

Grading Categories enable you to organize graded items in the course. At least one grading category is required in order for you to use the Gradebook. Common examples of categories include Classwork, Homework, or Quizzes. There is no limit to the number of categories you can create, and you can weight each according to your own definition.

To add a new category:

  1. Click Gradebook and then Grade Set Up on the left side of the course.
  2. Click Add in the Categories area.
  3. Enter a Name.
  4. Select either Percent or Total Points as the category calculation method. 
    Click here to learn about the difference between Percent and Total Points as calculation methods.
  5. Use Drop lowest to automatically drop the lowest n grades within that category from each student's overall score in the course.
  6. Click Create to complete.

Tip: Click the star icon to the right of one of your categories to mark it as your default category for newly-created materials.

Weight Grading Categories

After you have created at least one category, you can choose to weight the categories for your course by checking Weight Categories.

Enabling weighted categories displays a new Weight field next to each Category name. Enter proportional values into these fields to adjust the weight for each category.

Note: Weights are relative to each other. You can view the Category's actual percentage value next to the Weight field.

Editing Categories

To make changes to an existing category, click the category name. In the pop up window that displays, you may adjust:

  • The Category Name.
  • The Calculation Method.
  • The number of low scores you'd like to drop from the overall calculation.
  • The weight of the category.

Grading Periods & Final Weights

The Grading Periods & Final Weights area enables you to view all of the grading periods associated with your course, as well as the weighted percentages of each grading period. Depending on the settings in place at your school, you may be able to add or remove grading periods to your course.

To add or remove a Grading Period, follow these steps:

  1. Select Gradebook in the left menu of the Course Profile.
  2. Select Grade Setup directly underneath Gradebook.
  3. Click the Edit button to the right of the Grading Periods & Final Weights heading.
  4. Select from existing Grading Periods.
  5. If there aren't any grading periods listed in your school, you can add a new one to the course by entering a title (SP2010 or 2012-2013 Semester 1, for example) and a start and end date.
  6. If you don't see the ability to add grading periods to your course, contact a System Administrator (Enterprise), located in the Help Center area.
  7. Click Save to complete.

Note: Assignments, tests/quizzes, or graded discussions set as midterm/final appear under the Grading Periods. These items calculate as part of the student's overall grade, and you can view midterm/final graded items in the (Final Grades) dropdown menu in the Course Gradebook.

Final Grade Settings

Use Final Grade Settings to customize how final grades calculate and display to students. To adjust these settings:

  1. Select Gradebook in the left menu of the Course Profile.
  2. Select Grade Setup underneath Gradebook.
  3. Select the Scale under Final Grade Settings:
    • Numeric—displays the final grade as a percentage.
    • A+/- —displays the final grade as a letter (A, B, C, D, F, +/-)
    • You can also select a custom grading Scale in this area (see below for details).
  4. Check Round Period/Final Grades to round period grades and final grades.
    • Period Grade: If your Course spans multiple Grading Periods, each period will have its own grade. You can weight each period differently in the calculation of the final grade.
  5. Click Save Changes to complete.

Grading Scales and Rubrics

Create custom Grading Scales and Rubrics to grade your materials or apply to your Final Grade Settings. Grading Scales map an alphanumeric value of your choice to a percentage grade (0-100), and rubrics enable you to score an item or a test/quiz question based on several criteria.


To add a new grading scale:

  1. Click Gradebook on the left side of your course, then click Grade Set Up.
  2. While toggled into the Scales menu on the right side of Grade Set Up, click Add to create a new custom scale.
    Note: The Numeric and A +/- scales are pre-populated for all Schoology instructors; you cannot remove these from the Scales list. 

    In the screenshot above, a System Admin created the scales with the lock icons at the system level in an Enterprise account. Instructors cannot edit these scales.

  3. Select Scale.
  4. Choose either a Percentage or Point-based grading scale.
  5. Fill out the form.
    • Enter a name for the scale
    • For a percentage-based scale, set the Letter Grade that will display to students in their grade reports. Letter grades must contain at least one letter.
      • Set the percentage range for the grading scale.
      • If you enable the option to Use Average, Schoology calculates the average value for you.
      • If you enable the option to Only show letter grade, students will not see the percentage associated with the letter grade.
        • If you disable this option, students will see the points achieved out of points possible for individual items. They will also see the average for the category, grading period, and overall grades, depending on the other settings in place. For individual items, the letter grade is the percentage scale's calculation.
    • For a point-based scale, enter a value and description for obtaining the value (for example, 4= Exceeding Standard, 3= Meeting Standard, and so on).
    • Use the Add Level button to add additional grade levels to this scale.
  6. Click Save Changes to complete.

Note: If you type the Letter Grade into the Gradebook instead of a numeric value, the system uses the Average Value as the percentage grade.

To add a rubric:

  1. Select Gradebook in the left menu of the Course Profile.
  2. Select Grade Setup directly underneath Gradebook.
  3. Click the Add button in the upper right in the Grading Scales section.
  4. Select the Rubric option and fill out the form:
    1. Enter a name for the rubric.
    2. Create titles and descriptions for each criteria.
    3. To add additional rows of criteria, click on the +Criteria button or +Learning Objective button.
    4. To add additional columns to the scale, hover over the cell and click on the + icon that appears to the left and right of each cell.
    5. To remove a row or column, hover over the cell and click on the x icon that appears in the upper right.
    6. To reorder the rows, click on the double bars to the left and drag it to the appropriate location.
    7. Use the menu items on the upper left to close or hide the rubric.
    8. The Total Pts for the rubric automatically adjust as you add rows and columns.
  5. To create a rubric using learning objectives or standards, click the Alignments link next to Criteria.
  6. Click Create to complete.

Click here to learn more about using rubrics

Copy Settings

If you have a new course to which you'd like to copy the same grade setup settings as a previous course:

  1. Navigate to the Course Profile of your previous course.
  2. Select Gradebook in the left menu of the Course Profile.
  3. Select Grade Setup directly underneath Gradebook.
  4. Click Copy Settings in the upper right corner.
  5. Choose to copy categories, grading scales, rubrics, or all of the options.
  6. Select the course to which you'd like to copy the grade settings.
  7. Click Submit to complete.

Your Gradebook can also toggle into an area for Badges. Read more about Badges here.



  • Avatar
    Sra. Stanford

    Willie does this mean Schoology grades will sync with Skyward?

  • Avatar
    Nicki Shackleford

    Hi, Sra. Stanford -

    Since syncing grades with Skyward would be managed by your Enterprise organization, I recommend reaching out to your school's Support Contact. Please let us know if you have any other questions about this help article!


    Nicki Shackleford

    Schoology, Inc.

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