Tips & tricks: Maximizing the attendance tool
December 01, 2008 by Molly Small
For many Axio community members, attendance is a graded portion of the course, and attendance reporting is mandatory. For those members, the Attendance tool is the best thing since sliced bread. Unfortunately, not everyone may know how to use this time-saving tool.
Your Attendance Worksheet is blank until you create attendance events. Events can be created arbitrarily and don’t necessarily have to match the pattern of your in-class meeting times. Events might be lectures, labs, field trips, guest speakers or anything else for which you want to record attendance.
Click the Create New Events link and choose whether to create a Single Event or a Recurring Event.
Before submitting the event, you may want to check the box next to Immediately publish this event to students. If you publish events, your students can easily see if you marked them present, tardy, absent (excused) or absent (unexcused). This can help settle attendance disputes as they occur, rather than at the end of the course.
Click the Submit button to send the event to be listed on the Attendance Worksheet.
You have two options when recording attendance; you can record directly on the worksheet by clicking the Present green checkmark or export the worksheet and then import the edited worksheet. As with all exported items that you import back into Axio, the file must be a CSV file (not Excel), and it must contain the unique Axio ID numbers.
Tip: For your face-to-face class, you may find it helpful to print a blank worksheet that contains your students’ names and several blank columns that you can pass around in class. Click the Print Blank Sheet link from the Attendance Worksheet page. Use the Section menu to filter your students.
Give an attendance grade
After recording attendance, you can convert events to an assignment and post the grade to the Gradebook, just as you do with other assignments. You can even weight the attendance to be 10% of your students’ final grade, for example.
Tip: Don’t wait until the end of the course to give an attendance grade. You can do it often, even weekly, by creating a single assignment and updating the assignment with new events.
Click the Convert to Assignment link in the menu.
Give your attendance assignment a name and Gradebook title (for your reference only) and enter the Total Points possible for the attendance assignment.
In the Attendance Weights boxes, type the values of each attendance status. The values are a percentage of the Total Points. For example, if the total points are 100, and you set Present to 100% and Tardy to 80%, each Present status will receive all 100 points while each Tardy will receive 80 points. When multiple events are evaluated, these point values will be added together and averaged over the total number of events selected. For example, if two events (one Present and one Tardy) were evaluated with the weights above, the resulting grade would be 90 points. (100 + 80) / 2
Select the attendance events that will be included with this grade. You can later update this assignment to add or remove events. You do not need to create a separate assignment each time you want to give an attendance grade.
Remember, after you create the assignment, as with other assignments, the grade is not posted for students to see until you set the grade posted date.
Update an attendance grade
So you’ve already created your attendance assignment, and now you need to change it because you:
- Changed the attendance status of a student, or
- Want to add (or remove) graded attendance events, or
- Modify the attendance assignment weights or total points.
No worries. In fact, it’s often a better solution for both you and your students if you update an attendance assignment rather than create a new one. This eliminates the need to unpost the grades or delete the old assignment.
- Click the Manage Assignments link from the attendance menu.
Do one of the following:
- If you changed the attendance status of a student, click the Update Scores link of the assignment you want to update.
- To add or remove attendance events from an assignment or modify the assignment weights or total points, click the attendance assignment name. Edit the attendance events or other options and click the Next button, and then Update Assignment.