D2L - Grade Schemes (UW-Madison)


UW-Madison is adopting Canvas as the single, centrally supported learning management system, and discontinuing support for Desire2Learn (D2L) and Moodle. Access to D2L and Moodle will permanently end June 1, 2018. For information about retaining materials from D2L or Moodle, please refer to this document.

Grade schemes in D2L allow you to weight items in your gradebook, as well as the final grade. The weighing can be translated to letter grades or any text of your choosing.

Example of a grading scheme:

The University of Wisconsin-Madison, offers a standard grading scheme if instructors choose to use it.

A = 95-100% = 4.0 GPA

AB = 90-94% = 3.5 GPA

B = 85%-89% = 3.0 GPA  and so forth.

If, for example, you wished to populate the grade book with letter grades, you would set up a grade scheme that placed a numerical value to each letter grade, as above.

Creating a New Scheme

1. To create a new grade scheme, first click on Grades in the navigation bar.

2. Click on the Schemes tab, and then the newscheme.jpg button.


3. For your reference, give your scheme a Name (required)and Short Name.

4. You must now set up the "Range" for your grade scheme. The range setup consists of two main parts: "Symbol" and "Start %."

  • Symbol: The symbol is the text you wish to appear in this range. Most commonly, it will be a letter grade, although you could choose to use phrases such as excellent, satisfactory, etc.
  • Start %: The start % is the bottom of the grade range. For example, if an "A" is given to students who score 90 - 100%, you would enter A for the symbol and 90 for the Start %, as shown below.
    Note: Since the range always starts from the bottom, "100" is ordinarily not used as a Start % (unless the scheme is applied to a selectbox item type).
  • Assigned Value %: The assigned value is used for the Selectbox (or pulldown) and Checkbox grade item type.
    • The Assigned Value % can be left blank for Numeric grade item types.
    • For Selectbox and Checkbox item types only: The numeric value entered in the Assigned Value % for Selectbox and Checkbox types will be the value assigned to that grade. Recall that for checkbox item types, the checkbox needs to be selected and unselected to record a zero grade.
5. Click on addranges.jpg, if necessary, to add additional lines. By entering a number to the right of Add Ranges, you can add multiple lines at one time.

6. When finished, there should be a range for each grade you intend to give. For example:


7. After you complete all your changes, click save.jpg.

Applying a scheme to a grade item or final grade

1. Applying a grade scheme to a single grade item (or column) in the gradebook is done in the Properties screen of a grade item. 

2. When creating a new grade item this option appears after a column type is selected.

3. To apply a scheme to an existing item, under the Manage Grades tab click on the name of the grade item to open the Edit Item page.

4. A list of grade schemes, including the one just created, will appear in the dropdown list under the Grading heading.


5. Click save.jpg when complete.

Keywords:learn@uw learnuw desire2learn d2l gradebook grades grade setup system scheme percentage letter curve convert calculate tabulate   Doc ID:3172
Owner:Learn@UW Madison .Group:Learn@UW Madison
Created:2004-08-25 19:00 CDTUpdated:2017-12-01 12:20 CDT
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, DoIT Tech Store, Learn@UW Madison
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