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Using Gradescope with Brightspace (D2L) as an Instructor

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Getting started

Brightspace, D2L, or Desire2Learn? Brightspace is the learning management system (LMS) offered by software company D2L, formerly called Desire2Learn. This guide only uses the term Brightspace, but please note that your institution may refer to the system as D2L or Desire2Learn.
TA role permissions: If you are a Brightspace teaching assistant (TA) and you find that you are unable to create assignments, sync rosters, grade submissions, or post grades in Gradescope, ask an instructor to change your role to "instructor" on the Brightspace course classlist and resync the roster in Gradescope.

Gradescope integrations with LMSs, such as Brightspace, are available with an institutional Gradescope license. When you access Gradescope through Brightspace, you and your students won't need to create or use a separate Gradescope password, because you will be authenticated via your Brightspace credentials.

If you'd like to access your Gradescope account on the Gradescope website, you and students can go to gradescope.com and log in with your school credentials if your institution has that option. If you don't have that option, you can access the Gradescope website by clicking Sign Up on the Gradescope homepage and entering the email address associated with your Brightspace account, or by logging in to your existing Gradescope account via the Log In button. Regardless of whether you access Gradescope on the website or via Brightspace, you will be taken to the same Gradescope account, as long as the email address linked to the account is the same. If you or your students do end up with multiple accounts under multiple emails, you or they can merge accounts.

Below is the general process you should follow to be able to use Gradescope with Brightspace. In this guide, you'll find specific details for completing each of these steps and links to other pertinent Gradescope Help Center articles.

  • Step 1. Link your courses.
  • Step 2. Sync your roster.
  • Step 3. Set up your assignment.
  • Step 4. Grade submissions.
  • Step 5. Post grades.
 

Linking your Brightspace and Gradescope courses

Alternate method: This section and gif below show how to link your Brightspace and Gradescope courses starting on Brightspace. If you'd rather link starting on gradescope.com, you still must have a course set up in Brightspace already. A Brightspace administrator may need to create the course for you. After that, log in to gradescope.comcreate a new Gradescope course or open an existing one, and link it back to Brightspace from the Gradescope Course Settings page.
Instructor linking a course to the Gradescope LTI tool in D2L
  1. Log in to Brightspace. Navigate to the homepage of the Brightspace course you'd like to link to Gradescope. If you don't see the course you're looking for, contact your Brightspace administrator or create one if you have the role permissions to do so. On your Brightspace course homepage click Content, and then either create a new module (click Add a module > name the module > Click Enter) or click the existing module where you'd like to add the Gradescope External Learning Tool.
  2. In your module, click Add Existing Activities and choose External Learning Tools from the dropdown. When the Add Activity dialog box appears, click Gradescope (or the name your institution gave the Gradescope tool). If Gradescope isn't listed, contact your Brightspace administrator. Once you click the Gradescope link in the dialog box, you'll be taken back to your module where you will see a new link to Gradescope.
    Getting Gradescope to launch in a separate tab: Next to the Gradescope tool link in your module, click the down arrow > Click Edit Properties In-place > Select Open as External Resource. To use your Gradescope link right away, you may need to refresh the page. Gradescope will now open in a new tab when you and your students click the Gradescope link in the course module.
  3. Click the new Gradescope tool link in your module. This will launch Gradescope in Brightspace or in a new tab, depending on your settings.
  4. Once Gradescope launches, you'll see a dialog box with the option to create and link to a new Gradescope course or link to an existing Gradescope course you may have. Choose new or existing, and then click Link Course to go to the Course Settings page. If this is your first Gradescope login with these Brightspace credentials, a new Gradescope account will be created for you. The username for your Gradescope account is the same email address that's associated with your Brightspace account.
  5. On the Gradescope Course Settings page, you can update the course title, description, rubric types, and score bounds. Keep in mind that course title and description changes made here will only appear in Gradescope, not in Brightspace. When you're finished, click Update Course. Your course is now linked and students will be able to access it. Now, it's recommended that you sync your roster.
 

Syncing your roster

  1. Navigate to your Gradescope Course Dashboard. If you're continuing from the steps in the section above, you will already be there. If not, log in to Brightspace > Click your course > Click Content > Click the module where you added Gradescope > Click the Gradescope tool link there. Alternatively, you can log in to gradescope.com and click your course. Both methods will take you to your Gradescope Course Dashboard.
  2. On your Gradescope Course Dashboard, expand the left sidebar (if it isn't already) and click Roster to get to your Roster page.
  3. On your Gradescope Roster page, click the Sync Brightspace Roster button. A dialog box will appear explaining how accounts will be synced. All names, emails, and IDs will be auto-synced from Brightspace. Sections will be carried over from Brightspace, but groups will not. However, you can add groups easily or change sections if needed after you've synced your roster (see the note at the end of this section). All roles will be synced depending on how your institution initially configured your Gradescope integration (TAs, please see the note at the top of the page).
    Instructor syncing a D2L roster with Gradescope
  4. By default, Gradescope will email users to say that they've been added to the course. If you don't want users to be notified, uncheck "Let new users know that they were added to the course" in the dialog box. Then click Sync Roster. If you haven't already associated your Brightspace account with Gradescope, you will be taken to the Brightspace log in screen. After you log in to Brightspace, a message will appear asking if you'd like to authorize Gradescope. Click Continue and then click the Sync Roster button again in Gradescope.
  5. If students add/drop in Brightspace, be sure to re-sync the roster. Existing submissions/grades for dropped students will be preserved. See the Adding Students and Staff article for more tips. If you have any roster-syncing issues, contact help@gradescope.com.
    To change section names and add group names: After syncing, click Download Roster (bottom of Gradescope Roster page) > Add a Section and/or Group column with section or group values to the CSV file > Click Add Students or Staff > Upload the CSV back to Gradescope. Brightspace linking and any existing submissions and grades will be preserved as long as emails stay the same. Please note that if you re-sync your roster, you will lose any customized section names you added.
 

Setting up your Gradescope assignment

Instructor creating a Gradescope assignment in D2L
  1. Navigate to your Gradescope Course Dashboard. If you're continuing from the steps in the section above, you will already be there. If not, log in to Brightspace > Click your course > Click Content > Click the module where you added Gradescope > Click the Gradescope tool link there. Alternatively, you can log in to gradescope.com and click your course. Both methods will take you to your Gradescope Course Dashboard.
  2. On your Gradescope Course Dashboard, click an existing Gradescope assignment or click Create Assignment to make a new one. If you're updating an existing assignment, click Settings in the left sidebar, make your changes, and then click Save. If you're creating a new assignment, next choose the assignment type and settings. See our Help Center article on creating an assignment for details on assignments and settings. When you've chosen your settings, click Create Assignment.
  3. Your assignment is now updated/created. For student-uploaded assignments, once your release date passes in Gradescope, students will be able to submit work via gradescope.com or by clicking the Gradescope tool link in their Brightspace course module.
    Do I need to connect my Gradescope assignment to Brightspace? Yes, but not until you're ready to post Gradescope grades to your Brightspace Grades page. At that time you will need to connect your Gradescope assignment to a Brightspace grade item that you've set up to have the same overall point value as your Gradescope assignment. See Steps 1-3 of Posting grades if you'd like to do this now.
 

Grading submissions

  1. Navigate to your Gradescope Course Dashboard. To do that, log in to Brightspace > Click your course > Click Content > Click the module where you added Gradescope > Click the Gradescope tool link there. Alternatively, you can log in to gradescope.com and click your course. Both methods will take you to your Gradescope Course Dashboard.
  2. On your Gradescope Course Dashboard, click the assignment and Grade Submissions in the left sidebar to start grading.
  3. Once you do that, the process for grading is the same for Brightspace and non-Brightspace Gradescope users, so check out the detailed article on Grading Submissions. Once you've finished grading, be sure to connect your Gradescope assignment to a Brightspace grade item so you can post grades to Brightspace (see the next section).
    Instructor grading using Gradescope in D2L
 

Posting grades

  1. First, make sure you've synced your roster.
  2. Then to post Gradescope grades to Brightspace, you need to create or have an existing Brightspace grade item so you can connect your Gradescope assignment to it. Make sure the overall point value listed in Brightspace for this grade item matches the overall point value listed in Gradescope for the assignment, and it's recommended that you choose "Numeric" as the grade item type. If you've already connected your Gradescope assignment to a Brightspace grade item, launch the assignment in Gradescope, and then skip to Step 4.
    Creating Brightspace grade items: If you need help adding grade items, see the Brightspace instructor guide on Creating grade items.
  3. Next, navigate to your Gradescope Course Dashboard by clicking the Gradescope tool in the appropriate Brightspace course module or logging in to gradescope.com and clicking your course. Once Gradescope launches, click the Gradescope assignment you'd like to link to a Brightspace grade item, expand the left sidebar, and click Settings. Scroll down to the Brightspace Assignment section and click Link. When the dialog box appears, select the name of the Brightspace grade item you'd like to link to from the dropdown. Your Gradescope assignment is now connected to your Brightspace grade item on the Brightspace Grades page.
    Instructor linking Gradescope assignment in D2L
  4. With your Gradescope assignment open, expand the left sidebar (if it isn't already) and click Review Grades. On the Gradescope Review Grades page, click the Post Grades to Brightspace button. When the dialog box appears, click Post Grades. Posting grades to Brightspace will only post the students' final assignment scores from Gradescope to the linked grade item in Brightspace. Only grades for fully graded submissions (which have a checkmark in the Graded column on the Gradescope Review Grades page) will be posted.
    If grades aren't posting: Re-sync the roster in Gradescope > Click Post Grades to Brightspace again. If that doesn't work, email help@gradescope.com.
  5. If you want students to also see their graded, annotated submissions, question-by-question scores, rubrics, and feedback on Gradescope, click the Publish Grades button. If you'd like to, click the Compose Email to Students button at the bottom of the Review Grades page in Gradescope to alert students via email that their grades are now visible. To see what your students will see when they view their grades, check out the article on Using Gradescope with Brightspace as a Student.
Instructor posting Gradescope grades to D2L

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