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  6. Grade Transfer – what is it?

Grade Transfer – what is it?

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The grade transfer tool is a Moodle plugin available to all unit convenors seeking to streamline the transfer of grades from a Moodle Assignment or Quiz Activity to SAMIS. It is a tool which aims to reduce the administrative overhead in manually moving data from one service to the other. It was developed jointly by the CLT and computing services in response to academic staff requests, however the teams have also worked closely with academic and administrative staff from across the institution to ensure that the plugin is both easy and robust.

Grade Transfer : Step-by-Step Guide

With this plugin, rather than manually entering grades allocated on Moodle to SAMIS and hence opening up great potential for human error, there is the option to automate the flow of grades from one piece of software to the other. So, for instance, you may wish to reveal grades from a piece of assessed coursework on a Moodle submission, but the grade also needs to be input into SAMIS if it could form part of a summative assessment. This grade transfer tool would enable the set of grades from this Moodle assignment to be transferred correctly to each individual’s SAMIS record.

Grade Transfer – Screencast guide

The following 6 and a half minute video provides a screencast guide on the steps to set-up, prepare and instigate grade transfer.

Grade Transfer – 6.36 minute video

Who is responsible for Grade Transfer?

Given the importance of ensuring that grade data held in SAMIS is accurate, the Grade Transfer tool will only be accessible by the unit convenor. The unit convenor information is taken directly from SAMIS into Moodle, where they are assigned the Teacher + role. If the course ownership has changed or is incorrect, speak to the Faculty/School administrative staff about changing the Unit Convenor/Teacher+ in SAMIS. Staff with the regular Teacher role cannot transfer grades. Here are some of the key responsibilities that a unit convenor is expected to undertake regarding grade transfer:

  • Ensure assessment marks are correct before instigating a transfer.
  • Assure the accuracy of the grade data before instigating a transfer.
  • Review the resulting transfer report in order to check that the transfer has been completed satisfactorily.

Important !
Once data has been transferred to SAMIS it cannot be overwritten by Moodle – this is to minimise the likelihood of SAMIS data being inadvertently changed. This means that once data has been transferred, any subsequent changes that may be required will need to be made directly in SAMIS (and possibly reflected in Moodle by manually updating the assessment grade).

Preparing for Grade Transfer

There are two important caveats that unit convenors/Teacher+ roles must be aware of in order to use grade transfer. The first and most important caveat is to check that the Moodle Course ID number (located in the course settings as shown in the image below) corresponds to the same SAMIS cohort. Only Moodle courses with a valid SAMIS code will be able to connect to SAMIS for the purpose of transferring grades.

screenshot course ID in settings tab

Courses or units where staff have chosen to teach more than one cohort together, only the grades associated with the cohort identified by the Moodle Course ID number will be eligible for transfer. The grades for the other cohorts must be added directly into SAMIS.

The second caveat is that the granularity of assessment items in SAMIS should match the granularity of assessed items in Moodle. For instance, if you have three Moodle assessments for which summative grades are being allocated, and you wish to transfer these grades into SAMIS, there should also be three corresponding assessment items in SAMIS into which the grades can be transferred. Conversely, if you only have one single assessment item in SAMIS but have created more than one Moodle Assignment/Quiz in your course or unit, it would not be possible to link all of them to transfer grades to SAMIS.

Remember it is important that that the SAMIS assessment items have been given meaningful names in order that that they can be differentiated. For more information, read the article How to create an assignment

Checklist before you start

  • Check that there is one-to-one relationship in the number of Moodle Assignment/Quiz created and number of assessment items in SAMIS.
  • Ensure that each Moodle Assignment/Quiz has been linked to its corresponding assessment item in SAMIS. To check go to the settings tab of the Moodle Assignment/Quiz, find the ‘Grades transfer’ setting and ensure that in front of ‘Select assessment to link’ has been assigned a SAMIS assessment item as seen in the image below. Remember this setting is only available for Teacher+ roles.
screnshot of the grade transfer setting
  • Ensure that the Moodle Assignment/Quiz maximum grade is set to 100.
maximum grade in a Moodle Quiz
Screenshot showing maximum grade in a Moodle Quiz
Maximum grade in a Moodle Assignment set to 100.
Screenshot showing maximum grade in a Moodle Assignment set to 100.
  • Mark as normal. If working with an assignment (rather than a quiz) you will need to lift anonymity and release grades and feedback to the students before you can transfer grades to SAMIS. For more information read the article How to release grades and feedback.
Moodle assignment submission page with anonymity lifted and grades released.

Instigating Grade Transfer

Step 1: Go to Grade Transfer in Moodle

At the top of the page click on the ‘Grades‘ tab. Then on the drop off menu at the top in the left side of the screen select ‘ Grade Transfer’.

screenshot grade transfer menu

Step 2: Select the SAMIS assessment

On the new page in front of ‘SAMIS assessment name’ select the assessment items in SAMIS into which you wish to transfer the grades. If the appropriate item does not appear in the list and the button, make sure you have linked your Moodle activity to it. Then in front of ‘Transfer Status’ select ‘show all’ and to finalise press the button ‘View’ .

screenshot grade transfer SAMIS asssessment

Step 3: Transfer grades to SAMIS

On the new page you will see a summary screen alongside a list of the SAMIS cohort alongside the grades that they have achieved. At this point, you can instigate manual transfers in one of three ways:

  1. Transfer all grades at once by pressing the green ‘Transfer All’ button.
Transfer All button in Grade Transfer.

2. Transfer a single grade by pressing the green ‘Transfer grade’ that appears in the Transfer log (to the right of each record in the table).

'Transfer grade' button highlighted in grade transfer.

3. Transfer multiple records by selecting them via the check boxes and then (at the bottom of the screen) selecting ‘With selected users… Transfer grades’.

With selected users Transfer grades option.

You cannot undo or overwrite a transfer so do not do this step until you are completely happy with the grades being transferred.

When you transfer a grade manually, it will take you to a confirmation screen. In the screen you need to press the ‘Proceed with data transfer’ button, then the grade data will be transferred into a queue.

Proceed with data transfer button.

You will receive a summary of the grades successfully being added to the queue.

Grade transfer queue summary.

After Grade Transfer


Remember that data transfer is one way from Moodle to SAMIS and will only take place once. As soon as one or more grades have been transferred to SAMIS, this setting will become ‘locked’ – preventing it from being changed. Should it need to be ‘unlocked’ again, please contact the TEL team (via tel@bath.ac.uk).

Grade data will be transferred into a queue to await processing.  How long it takes for the data to be transferred to SAMIS will depend upon the amount of data in the queue at any given time – as such, it is recommended that you instigate Grade Transfer well in advance of any deadlines and check SAMIS to ensure that the expected grade data has been successfully transferred.


The grades will be reflected on SAMIS alongside the rest of their course results by the time the assessment marks are released.

Pros & Cons

  • There is a reduced risk of human error when entering grades from Moodle to SAMIS.
  • Less time spent on the transfer process of moving grades from Moodle to SAMIS.

Once grades have been transferred to SAMIS, they can’t be overwritten by Moodle and so if errors do arise, grades need to be manually changed.

Grade Transfer – downloadable quick guide

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