1. Home
  2. Guidance
  3. Moodle
  4. Assessment & Feedback
  5. Assignment
  6. Advanced Grading in Moodle
  7. Advanced Grading in Moodle
  1. Home
  2. Guidance
  3. Moodle
  4. Activities & Resources
  5. Forum
  6. Advanced Grading in Moodle
  7. Advanced Grading in Moodle

Advanced Grading in Moodle

What is advanced grading?

Advanced grading is a grading method that can be used in Moodle Assignments and Forums.

Advanced grading allows Moodle Teachers to define one of two grading forms – either a Marking guide or a Rubric.

Dropdown menu showing "Simple direct grading", "Marking guide" and "Rubric".

In this example marking guide, you can see predefined criteria, with allocated marks and space to enter feedback comments

Example of Marking guide with criterion, comments and maximum mark.

How do staff and students use it effectively?

Clear marking criteria will help students understand what any particular assessment task is looking for. Marking guides and Rubrics can help ensure assessment guidelines, success criteria and next steps are clear for students and staff.

Staff can decide which options they use when setting up their Marking guide or Rubric but we would recommend you consider the following:

  • Choose the setting to make the criteria descriptions visible to students in advance, and let them know that they can view these by accessing the assignment submission point.  You may need to highlight to them how to view the marking criteria at the early stages.  
  • If you’re using the Rubric or Marking guide for formative feedback, you can choose to hide the points awarded from students.
  • It’s important to include feedback comments and to personalise the feedback provided.  You can choose how to use the rubric and marking guide in combination with feedback comments. You can either have feedback comments for each assessment criterion, or you can make an overall feedback comment. 

In this example rubric, you can see a simple rubric with criteria and levels selected. You can add feedback comments for each criterion.

Example of a rubric with certain levels chosen.

How might I use it?

To get set up, please view the following guidance videos:

Watch this short video [6 mins 17 secs] which demonstrates how the set up a Rubric:



Rubrics – Advanced marking in Moodle video

Watch this short video [7 mins] which demonstrates how the set up a Marking guide:



Marking guide – Advanced marking in Moodle video

Downloading marked grading forms

Although you can see completed rubrics and marking guides inside of each student’s grading page, it is also possible to see and download the associated grades and feedback for all your students in one go. 

  • In the Course navigation menu, click onto the Grades tab
  • Select either Rubrics Report or Marking Guide Report (as appropriate) from the drop down menu at the top of the page
  • Select the activity you wish to view the feedback for and press the Submit button

All relevant grading information appears on the screen, and can be downloaded for offline review.

Reusing grading forms

The Advanced grading tab within an assignment or forum activity enables Moodle Teachers to select or switch between grading methods.  If you have selected an advanced grading method on this page (rubric or marking guide) a management screen will appear.

To use an existing grading rubric or marking guide, select Create new grading form from a template.

Screenshot of Moodle's advanced grading screen. Includes a 'Create new grading form from a template' icon.

By default, a number of pre-defined templates will appear, however a search function located at the top of the page will enable you to search for and reuse your own rubrics and marking guides.

Screenshot of grading form search tool. A check box labeled 'include my own forms' has been selected.

Note: Only rubrics and marking guides that you have previously been marked as ‘Ready for usage’ (i.e. that are attached to an existing activity) can be re-used this way.

Sharing grading forms with others

At the current time, there is no export/import option for rubrics and marking guides, however the workaround is to create a new activity (such as an assignment) and attach the relevant grading form to it. You can then create a backup of this activity and share the resulting .mbz file with others.

By restoring the activity, the attached grading form is restored too.

Note:  If you delete all of the activities that make use of a specific rubric or marking guide, you also delete all copies of that grading form.

FAQs

The main difference between a Marking Guide and Rubric is the points/marks awarded for each criterion. For the Rubric, only a set number of points can be awarded depending on the preset levels of each criterion. In a Marking Guide the grader can choose the points awarded up to the maximum points allowed for the given criterion.  

Marking Guide 

  • You can set up a marking guide in Moodle using the Advanced Grading options. 
  • In Moodle, the marking guide is a feedback form where you can describe the learning outcomes or assessment criteria. The form provides a box to enter feedback comments for each criterion. 
  • You can allocate a maximum mark for each criterion. 
  • The marking guide allows you to build up a bank of frequently used comments. 
  • General feedback and criteria comments can be made visible to students.
  • Can be re-used and/or shared with colleagues.

Rubric 

  • You can set up a rubric in Moodle using the Advanced grading options. 
  • In Moodle, the rubric is presented in a grid format. There are rows for the different assessment criteria or learning outcomes, and columns for the expected performance levels. 
  • You can assign a score to each performance level. 
  • You can decide whether to display the breakdown of marks to students, or just the descriptors. 
  • General feedback and criteria comments can be made visible to students.
  • Can be re-used and/or shared with colleagues.
  • The overall mark is calculated by the rubric. 
  • A well-constructed rubric can speed up the marking process, improve consistency of feedback and provide the student with a clear explanation of their final grade.

Staff can decide which options they use but we would recommend you consider the following.

  • It’s important to share the marking criteria with students before the assessment. You may need to highlight to them how to view the marking criteria at the early stages.
  • Choose the setting to make the rubric or criteria descriptions visible to students in advance, and let them know that they can view these by accessing the assignment submission point.
  • If you’re using the rubric or marking guide for formative feedback, you can choose to hide the points awarded per criterion from students (they will still see the total grade awarded).
  • You can use the rubric or marking guide in combination with a Letter scale to provide indicative feedback (for example Pass or Fail) instead of a percentage mark.
  • You can choose how to use the rubric in combination with feedback comments, so you can either have feedback comments for each assessment criterion, or you can make an overall feedback comment. It’s important to include feedback comments, to personalise the feedback provided.
  • You could also choose to annotate the submitted assignments, as the rubric and marking guide can be used in combination with the other feedback methods in Moodle.

No, Moodle will scale the rubric/marking guide score to 100 even if your rubric/marking guide doesn’t add up to 100 (assuming you haven’t changed this in the assignment settings) e.g. an assignment with a rubric/marking guide that scores 20/40 will appear as 50/100 in the gradebook and for SAMIS transfer.

The rubric will work out the marks based on the points awarded for each criterion. When you create the rubric, you will be able to determine the points each level is worth.

For example, if you have chosen the levels in the green boxes for each criterion, the student would receive a mark of 6/9, this will appear as 66.7/100 in the gradebook and for SAMIS transfer.

The marking guide will work out the marks based on the points decided by the grader, the grader can only give a score up to the maximum marks.

For example, if the grader awards a mark of 7 on the assignment below, the student will receive a mark of 7/10, this will appear as 70/100 in the gradebook and for SAMIS transfer.

Some rubrics identify a percentage weighting for each criterion (or level) but this is not obvious in a Moodle Rubric.

You can modify the weight of any criterion by setting the value of the points assigned to its levels. If there is one criterion with levels 0, 1, 2, 3 and the second one with levels 0, 2, 4, 6 then the latter’s impact on the final grade is twice as much as the former’s.

Example:

 L1 – Fail L2 – Weak L3 – Average L4 – Good 
C1 (50%) 10 15 25 
C2 (30%) 15 
C3 (20%) 10 

Note that Moodle will always scale to 100 (the Assignment default).  It’s recommended to leave the total score at 100 in order to use the grade transfer functionality. 

No. Both these assessment methods must be completed online in Moodle’s grading screen.  If you would like to export submissions to work and mark offline you will need to mark with Simple direct marking. 

Marking guide: Yes, a marking guide can be edited once in use. A warning will appear if the marking guide has already been used for grading and will ask you if the assignment needs to be regraded or not. 

Rubric: Yes, but editing the levels or values of the criterion will not change the grade book value already given to students. The assignment will need to be regraded.

This depends on how the markers want to work.

Double (not blind) marking could use a marking guide where each marker adds a feedback comment with their initials.

In rubrics you can choose to have feedback comment boxes for each criterion, but only show these to markers.  These could be used to explain ‘levels’ chosen for moderation with other markers.

Yes, in the Marking guide, other graders on the unit will be able to see and use the frequently used comments saved for that assignment.

Yes. You can search your own grading forms in the search box. This way, you can simply re-use your grading forms. Only forms marked as ‘Ready for usage’ can be re-used this way.

Click Create new grading form from template.

Click the box to include your own forms and click Search.  Then select the link to use the form.

Each time you reuse a marking guide or rubric, a new version is created.  This means you can edit the new version without it affecting any of the previous versions.

To re-use a marking guide or rubric in a different Moodle course you will have to Backup and Restore the activity.

Each time you reuse a marking guide or rubric, a new version is created.  This means you can edit the new version without it affecting any of the previous versions.

Only the Marking Guide option gives you the chance to use ‘frequently used comments’.  If a teacher regularly uses the same comments when marking, it is possible to add these to a frequently used comments bank. 

  • Click the Click to edit link and add a comment. 
  • Click the +Add frequently used comment button to add another one and repeat as needed. 

When you reuse a marking guide the frequently used comments will be duplicated for reuse too. 

Case study

Read a case study about using a rubric for open ended assessment.

Further reading

Was this article helpful?

Related Articles