How to setup your D2L grade book


Setting up your D2L grade book allows you to use grades to centralize assessment and evaluation for your course.


An internet-connected device with a web browser (Edge, Firefox, Chrome, or Safari).


In the Grades tool, if a grade book is not set up or imported for your course, you will see the Grades Setup Wizard page when you first navigate to the tool.

  1. On the navigation bar, click Grades.

  2. On the Grades Setup Wizard page, scroll to the bottom and click Start.

  3. Choose your grading system, then click Continue.

  4. If you want users' final grades to be released automatically when you create them, select Automatically release final grade, then click Continue. Note: If an instructor changes the final grade value after the final grade is automatically released, the final grade is not released again with the new value. This might occur if an instructor grades an additional item that changes the calculated final grade item. Student final grades that already have a value are not automatically released when this variable is turned on. The grades are only released the first time a Final Grade is calculated from Null to a final grade value.
  5. Choose how you want to treat ungraded items. If you selected Automatically release final grade, D2L recommends that you select Drop ungraded items so that the released grades better reflect the users' current grades throughout the term.
  6. If you want final grades to automatically adjust after changing a grade item or calculation option, select Automatically keep final grade updated.
  7. Click Continue.
  8. Choose your default grade scheme and then click Continue.

  9. In the Number of decimal places to display field, enter the number of decimal places to display to users who enter grades using the grade book.
  10. Click Continue.
  11. Select your student view display options and then click Continue.
  12. On the Grades Setup Summary page, review your selections.
  13. Do one of the following:
    • To make changes to your grade book setup, click Go Back.
    • Click Finish.

General information for setting up a D2L grade book

Create a grading system

As an instructor, you can determine how to set up your grade book to best reflect your approach to evaluation, including the grading system and grade scheme that is most appropriate for your course. You can select how grades display to learners, how they update in the grade book, and how you want to deal with ungraded items. You can create grade items for projects, assignments, discussions, quizzes, etc. to include in your grade book, and even associate them with other tools (e.g. Assignments, Quizzes, Discussions).

Grade book

A grade book contains your grading system, grade calculations, grade scheme, grade items, and view and display options. Grade items in your grade book represent all the work that you want to evaluate users on in a course. You can evaluate specific tasks such as assignments, tests, and participation, and you can also create grade items and associate them with course objects such as assignments and quizzes.

You must set up a grade book before you can use the Grades tool. As you plan your grade book, consider:

  • Which grade items you plan to evaluate.
  • Which grading system is most appropriate for your course.
  • How you will allocate points or weights across grade items.
  • Which grade items you want to associate with course objects. Note that only numeric grade items can be associated with course objects.
  • If you want to include a milestone grade at least once during the course.
  • How you want to calculate final grades.

Making changes to a grade book's settings and calculation options after you begin tracking users' grades can significantly affect existing data.

Grading system

The grading system determines how the grade items in your grade book contribute to users’ final grades. There are three options:

  • Grade items can count as a percentage of a final grade worth 100%.
  • Grade items can be worth a certain amount of points that are totaled for a final grade.
  • You can define a custom formula for how grade items contribute to a final grade.

Grade items

Grade items in your grade book represent all the work that you want to evaluate users on in a course. Grade items can exist independently in your grade book, or you can associate numeric grade items with course objects such as discussions, quizzes, and assignments. Each grade item has an entry in the grade book, to which you assign a grade for each user. Depending on the grade item type you want to create, grade items can be graded numerically or based on a grading scheme.

Grade categories

Grade categories organize and group related grade items into sections in your grade book, for example, a Writing Assignments grade category for group assignment items and a Class Participation grade category for group discussion items. Grade categories display in Manage Grades.

Calculated final grade

The final grade is calculated by the grade book. You cannot adjust the final grade without adjusting grade item scores.

Adjusted final grade

You can manually change the final grade calculation without affecting grade item scores.

Additional Resources

Understanding the Grades Tool


Article ID: 32
Wed 7/6/22 3:49 PM
Thu 9/15/22 11:09 AM