The listed video isn’t working so I looked at Grades – Understanding the Grading Tool – Instructor which explained the different ways grades can be classified, how to weight categories and individual grades within those categories. Grades can be points, pass/fail, and text based which gives a lot of leeway when determining how grades are scored. I’ve always had categories assigned weights based on if it is summative or formative, but nothing more than that. Grading more work but making the grade a smaller part is helpful for those students who like to see grades for everything but the pass/fail option and reducing the weight of the grade makes it easy for the teacher to keep up with the grading. This gives the student faster feedback on all of the work they do and lets the teacher see quickly if there is a trend in grades that needs follow up attention.
I like the way you can grade within the platform as you are reviewing the assignments. I’ve not worked with a learning platform where that feature has been active. I watched the video Grading Discussion Boards and think that this would be a very nice feature to have. Having the ability to grade separate posts would help give excellent feedback to students so they could see where their answers were strong and where they may need a little more help. This feature would help students stay more engaged in the class and post thoughtful replies in all of their discussion answers since they could quickly see how they were doing. The same overall grade could show very different strengths and weaknesses for different students.
In the video Generating Reports in the D2L Learning Environment I can see the different types of reports that the D2L LMS generates. I have used reports similar to the test and question analysis reports and found them very useful in determining misconceptions, weak understanding, and topics that my students need no further work on. I have used that information to both reteach and expand what I am doing with my current classes and to change what I am teaching in the future.
In the video A Not So Quick Tour of D2L Student Progress Analytics shares some very useful information about what students are doing in the class and what content they are actually accessing and for how long. It’s a good look at how they are using the content and if they are taking the time needed to learn the content or if they are opening and closing so that a quick look shows you the material has been accessed. This is in other tools and class list.
As an online instructor I would like the feature where you can assign different weights to grades and categories, grade within the discussion boards, and look at the class list information contained under other tools. These would all be modules I am not currently familiar with and think would add greatly to teaching. That doesn’t mean that I would want to give up any of the other grading functions such as analyzing tests that I am already familiar with.
I think the grading within discussion boards would be the most valuable to students because it makes it very easy to give discussion feedback and currently in my online classes I use discussion boards almost every day. The use of comments and specific grading within a discussion would allow me to quickly let students know where they have strengths nd weaknesses. It would let me target more specific information to specific students when needed, as well as encouraging those that are doing well already.
I feel that the analytics in the other tools, class list would be most helpful to me as an instructor. It gives me an easy way to see what students are looking at, how they are using the material, as well as responses that I am getting for the assignments. It would make it much easier to relate how each student is using the materials with how they are progressing in the class. This would allow for more targeted intervention and enrichment as needed.