What is Gradescope and how can it be used to transform teaching?

Discover how Gradescope revolutionizes teaching. Learn its features, benefits, and how to use it effectively in your classroom.

May 20, 2024 - 13:45
May 20, 2024 - 13:45
What is Gradescope and how can it be used to transform teaching?

Gradescope, as its name implies, is a digital grading tool designed to simplify the process of submission, grading, and assessment. It utilizes an app and online platform to centralize these tasks, offering educators easy access to everything they need in one location. This digital, cloud-based system enables access from any location at any time. In addition to its digital nature, Gradescope provides a streamlined approach to grading, including the use of multiple-choice bubble-style options, which can significantly reduce marking time.

However, given the abundance of alternative software options available, many of which are already compatible with existing digital tools, the question arises: Will Gradescope prove beneficial to you?

What is Gradescope?

Gradescope is a digital tool that facilitates student work submissions, allows educators to grade assignments, and enables both parties to view the final grades. This functionality is accessible from nearly any device through its user-friendly app and online platform.

Gradescope goes beyond digital interactions, offering teachers and students the option to work on paper, which can later be scanned into the system for convenient access. It supports various types of submissions, such as assignments, exams, and coding tasks, allowing for quick grading and providing direct feedback to students.

By employing rubrics and question-based analysis, teachers can gain a comprehensive understanding of individual grades as well as the performance of entire class groups.

How does Gradescope work?

After a trial period, Gradescope is available for purchase, granting teachers access to the platform. Students can submit their work using the app or website on their personal devices.

Students can conveniently capture their work by taking a photo with their smartphones, which can then be converted to PDF for uploading to the app. While various free apps can perform this conversion, Gradescope recommends a few that are particularly effective.

Once uploaded, the app intelligently identifies the student's handwritten name and determines the boundaries of the work. This allows for grading on a question-by-question basis and enables anonymization of submissions for unbiased grading.

Educators can provide feedback and grade using a flexible rubric, and then send the result to the student or export it to a gradebook. Detailed analyses can be generated for work over time, for individual students, groups, questions, and more.

What are the standout features of Gradescope?

Gradescope offers support for bubble sheets, enabling quick and easy grading. Teachers can create question and answer bubble sheets, allowing students to mark their multiple-choice answers. These sheets can be scanned using the app, automatically recognized and graded. Teachers can then verify the accuracy of the marks before exporting and analyzing the results.

Utilizing AI technology, Gradescope can group similar answers together, further expediting the grading process. For instance, a chemistry teacher mentioned grading 250 students' responses to 10 multiple-choice questions in just 15 minutes. Additionally, Gradescope provides a one-click response option to instantly send auto-graded responses to students.

Gradescope's grading system is particularly beneficial for coding, as it can automatically identify code and even provide auto-grading based on uploaded content. It supports uploads from platforms like Github and Bitbucket, while also allowing teachers to manually input grades and feedback when necessary.

This scanning-based marking system is also applicable to exams, simplifying the submission and grading process. Additionally, all submissions are digitized for future access and analysis, providing clear overviews of trends that might otherwise be overlooked.

What is the pricing structure for Gradescope?

Gradescope provides a free trial, after which there are three paid subscription levels. The pricing for each level is based on your institution's size and requirements.

The Basic plan includes collaborative grading, unlimited course staff, student mobile app, assignment statistics, regrade requests, full grade export, and late submissions.

The Complete plan includes all features of the Basic plan, plus import rubrics, text annotations, AI-powered grading, anonymous grading, programming assignments, code similarity detection, bubble sheet assignments, unpublishing course grades, and rubrics before submission.

The Institutional plan includes all features of the Complete plan, as well as course duplication, LMS integration, Single Sign-On (SSO), an administrator dashboard, and dedicated onboarding and training.

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