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End of Semester Gradebook Tasks

Why Do This?

It is important to verify all grades are correct in Cougar Courses before manually submitting official grades in MyCSUSM (PeopleSoft). If an incorrect grade is entered in MyCSUSM, paper grade forms are required to request a grade change.

If you do not know how to submit official grades in MyCSUSM, please see the section "How to Submit Grades" at the bottom of this this help page from the Office of the Registrar. If you have questions about the process of submitting official grades, please contact the Registrar at


Check the User Report

By default the category and course totals that students see do not include any hidden graded items (while the totals you see as the instructor do). This means if there are hidden graded items the total you see and the total students see could be very different. This is why it is important to check the User Report (the student view of the gradebook).

  1. From your course homepage click on the gear icon in the upper right to open the Administration block, and select Gradebook setup.

 course administration block with gradebook setup link

  1. Select the View tab, and then select the User report tab (on the far right).

 view tab, user report sub-tab

  1. Under "Select all or one user" drop down menu in the upper right, choose "All users."  You will see the grades and totals for each student, one after the other.

 Select all or one user drop down

  1. First set to view the report as “Myself” in the upper right.

 view report as drop down, selecting myself

  1. For each student, verify all items are visible. If grade items are grayed out, that means they are not visible to students.

 grayed out grade item

  1. Then, set to view the report as “User” in the upper right. This will show you exactly what each student sees.

 view report as drop down, user selected

  1. For each student, verify all items and totals are visible. If a total is not visible, there will be a dash for it in the Grade column.

 course total hidden, there is a dash instead

If a grade item or category total is not visible or correct see instructions below on how to resolve.

Grade Item Not Visible

  1. Is the item an activity such as Assignment, Quiz, Forum, etc.?
  • If so, first make sure it is visible on the course homepage. Click the three dots below the item name and click Show. If you see Hide instead of Show, that means the item is already visible.

 show activity

  • If it is a Quiz, go into the settings and to the Review Options section. Make sure the box for Points is checked in all available columns. Save. Keep in mind if you only want students to see their scores after the quiz is closed, the quiz must be closed for all, including any User Overrides.

 review options section, points checked

  • If it is a Turnitin Assignment, the item will be hidden until the Post Date. To make visible, go into the settings and change the Post Date to a date in the past.

 turnitin dates

  1. Is it still not visible, or is it a manual grade item?
  • In the gradebook, go to Setup tab and then the Gradebook Setup tab.

setup tab, gradebook setup sub-tab

  • Select Edit for that item and then Show. If you see Hide instead of Show, that means the item is already visible.

on setup tab, click edit and then show

  1. Is it still not visible?
  • Go to the Grader Report (under the View tab) and Turn editing on (upper left).

 turn editing on button

  • Scan through all the cells and verify that all the eye icons are open. An eye with a slash through it means the grade is hidden.

 eye icons

  • If closed, click the eye icon to open. Repeat for each closed eye. Scroll to the bottom left and click the Save changes button.

Course/Category Total Not Visible

If the whole category is not visible:

  • On the Gradebook Setup tab, go to the category title (the one with the folder icon next to it) and click Edit and then Show.

If just the total is not visible:

  • On the Gradebook Setup tab, go to the category total line and click Edit and then Show.

Course/Category Total Not Correct

Likely causes:

Extra credit items not set as extra credit:

There are items that should be in a category, but are not:

There are unused grade items being counted in the total:

  • If you are not using grade items you will need to either delete the item, edit the item to make it worth no points, or put it into a category that is weighted to zero.
    • To delete
      • If it is an activity (Assignment, Quiz, Forum, etc.) you must delete it from your course homepage. On your course homepage go to the item, click the three vertical dots below the item, and then Delete. It will take up to an hour to be removed from the gradebook.
      • If it is a manual grade item, you can delete from the Gradebook Setup tab. Go to the item and click Edit and then Delete.
    • To make the item worth 0 points (for activities)
      • Go to the course homepage and for the item click the pencil icon underneath. In the Grade section change the Type to None. For quizzes, go to the Edit Quiz page and change the Maximum grade to 0. Save. If that doesn't work, put them into a weighted category...
    • To put them into a weighted category

Categories are set to an incorrect weight:

  • To fix:
    • On the Gradebook Setup tab, go to the category title (the one with the folder icon next to it) and click Edit and then Edit Settings.
    • Make sure the Aggregation is correct. If you are weighting just the category, choose “Simple weighted mean of grades.” The items within that category will be automatically weighted based on their point totals. If you are weighting the category and need to manually set the weight of each item within the category, choose “Weighted mean of grades.”  
    • If using Simple Weighted Mean of Grades or Weighted Mean of Grades, make sure the Maximum grade is correct. For example, if the category is worth 40% of the final grade, enter 40 for Maximum grade.
    • Save changes.

There are ungraded items being excluded from the total:

  • To fix:
    • On the Gradebook setup tab, for each category (every line with a folder icon in it) select Edit and then Edit Settings.
    • Under Aggregation, click Show More
    • Uncheck the "Exclude empty grades" box.
    • Save changes.
    • Repeat this for each category.

Items are unintentionally being dropped/excluded from the total:

  • By default hidden items are excluded from the totals.
  • To fix: Make grade items visible (see above)

 Specific grades are overriden

  • By default the system expects the grades for activities to automatically come from the activities themselves. However, you can choose to input grades for activities directly in the gradebook. Doing so requires you click the Override box for the student in the Single View for that grade item. When a grade is Overriden, the box on the Grader Report page turns a beige/gold color. This is to visually let you know the grade was entered directly in the gradebook and did not come from the activity. Once the Override box is checked, the grade is essentially locked. The grade can only be updated by going back to the Single View to manually change, or by unchecking the Override box to allow the grade from the activity to come through. It is easy for the Override box to be accidentally checked, or to be checked intentionally but then become outdated. If so, it could result in an incorrect total.
  • To fix:
    • On the Grader Report page, scroll to the item and click the pencil icon next to the name. Or click on the Single View tab and then choose the grade item from the dropdown.
    • Scroll down to the affected student. Either manually change the grade to the correct grade, or uncheck the Override box if you wish for the grade from the activity to come through. Don't forget to Save.

Show Final Letter Grade

By default the course total for each student is shown as points. You might want to also display the letter grade that corresponds to this point value.

To display a letter grade for the course total:

  1. On the Gradebook Setup tab, select Edit and then Edit Settings for the very topmost item (your course category).

for topmost item, click on edit and then edit settings

  1. At the bottom of the Category Total section click Show More.

 show more link

  1. Change the “Grade display type” to the desired option. Real means points. To show points and the corresponding letter grade choose "Real (letter)"

 grade display type options

  1. Save changes.

 save changes button

Note: to change the default letter grade scale, while in the gradebook click on the Letters tab. Then click on the Edit tab. Check the box "Override site defaults." Make desired changes. Save.

Change Columns Displayed

By default the User Report shows the columns Calculated Weight, Grade, Range, and Feedback for each item and category.

To add/hide columns:

  1. Select the Setup tab and then the Course Grade Settings tab.

 gradebook setup tab, course grade settings sub-tab

  1. Go to the User Report section. Besides the default columns, the additional options include:
  • Rank
  • Percentage
  • Average
  • Letter grades
  • Contribution to course total
  1. To add a column, choose Show from the drop down for that item. To hide a column, choose Hide.

 user report options. choose show from the drop down

  1. Save changes.

 save changes button


Export Gradebook As An Excel Spreadsheet

We recommend you keep a copy of the gradebook for your records, and to have it to reference as you enter official grades in MyCSUSM.

  1. While in the gradebook click on the Export tab and then on the Excel Spreadsheet

 export tab, and excel sub-tab

  1. By default all grade items and totals will be exported. Uncheck the boxes for the items you do not want exported.
  1. For “Export Format Options” check the boxes for the information you want exported. Real refers to points.

 export format options

  1. Click the Download

 download button

  1. Save the file to your computer.