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Overview

 
The GPA Teacher application provides fully versatile grading and reporting options for teachers, their students, and their students' parents.
 
At the onset of the semester, term, or marking period, teachers set up grading options for each of their classes, or in some cases use school-wide or district-wide standards. As the marking period progresses, teachers record grades for their students on various assignments. The GPA Teacher application allows teachers to define how their assignments are graded and whether such assignments are aligned with standards.
 
Grades on each assignment are calculated based on benchmarks and standards, codes, weights, categories, and rounding options defined by the teacher. When generating report cards, grades for an entire semester, term, or marking period are calculated and displayed.
 

Grading Standards

 
Using the GPA Teacher application, teachers define grading standards for each of the classes they teach.
 
Such grading standards may be grouped into super standards to better organize and present all of the teacher's grading standards. Further, for each grading standard, a numeric effort grade may be assigned.
 

Standards and Super Standards

 
Though use of super standards is optional, they provide a means of grouping individual standards together. Further, teachers may choose which of the given standards and super standards will appear on generated report cards. The choice is made when teachers define standards (and super standards), which generally occurs at the beginning of the semester, term, or marking period.
 
Using Mathematics as an example subject area, a teacher may define Mathematical Reasoning as a super standard; related standards within this group may include:
 
  1. Students make decisions about how to approach and solve problems;
  2. Students use strategies, skills, and concepts in finding solutions to problems.
 
As another example within Mathematics, a teacher may define Statistics, Data, Analysis, and Probability as a super standard; related standards within this group may include:
 
  1. Students compute and analyze statistical measurements for data sets;
  2. Students use data samples of a population and describe the characteristics and limitations of the sample.
 
While standards and super standards are often used to define pre-existing state standards, teachers can define their own standards. For example, an elementary school teacher may define Study Skills or Class Participation or other such subject-independent standards. Further, standards are often used to include school-wide or district-wide standards, providing a consistent approach to grading and reporting across all classes.
 

Effort Grades

 
Using the GPA Teacher application, numeric effort grades are automatically calculated (and updated) for each standard and super standard, as well as for each student across all standards. Further, when report cards are generated, teachers may opt to show effort grades instead of letter grades (see below), as long as assignments are aligned with standards and super standards accordingly.
 

Assignments

 
In the GPA Teacher application, teachers are able to create assignments for their classes. For each assignment, the number of points the assignment is worth is required. Teachers may also opt to define the assignment as an extra credit assignment or to not include the assignment in the final grade calculation at all.
 
Further, an assignment may be associated with a grading standard via the use of a dropdown box. By doing so, the assignment will be aligned with the standard and corresponding effort grades for all students in the class will be updated accordingly.
 
Report cards generated by the GPA Teacher application may show each individual assignment grade, if desired (see below).
 

Generating Report Cards

 
A key feature of the GPA Teacher application is the ability to generate a variety of report cards in printable formats, including PDF and Microsoft Word. Knowing one size does not fit all, GPA Teacher provides numerous options for customizing report cards and progress reports based on the individual needs of teachers, students, parents, and school administrators.
 
After selecting the class for which reports are to be generated, a teacher may decide what type of report card to generate. More specifically, generated report cards may show final grades only or, if selected, also show the details behind the final grades. Such details include attendance totals and grades on assignments, standards, and super standards. Teachers pick and choose which of these grade components to actually show.
 
Final grades may be shown as letter grades (e.g. A, B, C, D, F) or as numeric effort grades based on standards and super standards. As mentioned above, if effort grades are to be used, assignments must be aligned with the appropriate standards and super standards. The GPA Teacher application also provides the ability to convert letter grades to equivalent effort grades. Teachers may further customize their effort grades by converting them to other grading schemes (e.g. E for Excellent, S for Satisfactory, N for Needs Improvement, and U for Unsatisfactory). In general, five levels numbered 0 through 4 are available.
 
To help ensure teachers, students, and parents communicate effectively, report cards may include individualized comments from teachers. To add a comment, a teacher simply double-clicks on a student's final grade; the comment then appears on the generated progress report or report card. Further, teachers may opt to provide a signature line for a parent or guardian to sign and return to the teacher or school.