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Utilities Menu

Sort Students (Utilities Menu)

The Sort Students dialog in the Utilities menu lets you sort the student list by up to 5 criteria. 

1) The numbers 1 through 5 are used for sorting priority, with 1 indicating highest priority. 
2) You have the option of sorting on one field only by leaving all other fields blank or 
3) You can sort on several levels.
4) For example, suppose a band teacher uses:

a) the Misc 1 column of the Students window to keep track of each student's musical instrument. By placing a 1 in the Misc 1 column, and a 2 in the Name column, and 

b) then sorting, the teacher can group all of the Alto Sax players together, followed by all of the Bassoon players, all of the Clarinet players, and so forth. 

c) Within each instrument group, the students will be sorted by name.

5) Depending on the options you have chosen in the Screen Prefs dialog located in the Style menu, sorting by rank may occur on the basis of the overall 

a) summary grade or t

b) he grade in a particular category and 

c) grading period.

6) If you want to do a temporary sort to generate a report, and retain the original order of students, follow this sequence: 

a) Use the Save the class first, 

b) then sort the students. 

c) When you are finished with the report, use Revert Class from the File menu to re-open the version of the class you saved just prior to sorting.

TIPS: 

(1) If you're sorting numbers, then you must use leading zeroes to get Grade Machine to sort as you might expect. 

(2) That is because Grade Machine sorts numbers as if they are strings of text, not numbers. 

(3) For example, say five of your students have the following Student ID numbers: 1, 10, 3, 04, and 02. 

(4) If you then use the Sort Students dialog to sort by Student ID, the IDs will be sorted as follows: 02, 04, 1, 10, and 3. Notice that the 3 comes after the 10. 

(5) To get Grade Machine to sort the numbers in numerical order, the IDs should have been entered as 2-digit numbers. e.g., 01, 02, 03, 04, and 10, with zeroes before numbers less than 10.

NOTES: 

(1) When the student list is sorted alphabetically by name, students whose names begin with a (~) Tilde are placed at the end of the list. 

(2) For more information on using the Tilde, see the Drop Students topic

Randomize Student IDs (Utilities Menu)

The Randomize Student IDs dialog in the Utilities menu lets you randomly assign a string of characters for each student's secret ID. 

WARNING: Don't randomize Student IDs if you need to import and export student IDs.

1) Indicate the desired number of characters for the Student IDs by selecting the correct number from the ID Length pop-up list. Student IDs can be up to 15 characters long.
2) Choose either Numeric or Alphanumeric, i.e., letters and numbers,
3) Then click the OK button.

Sort Assignments (Utilities Menu)

The Sort Assignments dialog in the Utilities menu enables you to sort assignments by several criteria. 

1) The numbers 1 through 3 are used for sorting priority, with 1 indicating highest priority. 
2) You have the option of sorting on one field only by leaving all other fields blank or you can sort on several levels.
3) Sorting by Category Number, i.e., placing a 1 the Category Number field, will keep all categories together, which is especially useful for those elementary teachers who are using the categories for different subject areas. 

4) In addition, you can limit sorting to a given grading period, or you can sort all assignments in your assignment list without regard to grading periods.
5) If you want to do a temporary sort to generate a report, and retain the original order of assignments, follow this sequence: Save the class first, then sort the assignments. 
6) When you are finished with the report, use Revert Class from the File menu to re-open the version of the class you saved just prior to sorting.

WARNING: We recommend that you only sort assignments within a given Grading Period to avoid tampering with Grading Period calculations

TIPS: 

(1) If you're sorting numbers, then you must use leading zeroes to get Grade Machine to sort as you might expect. 

(2) That is because Grade Machine sorts numbers as if they are strings of text, not numbers. 

(3) For example, say five of your assignments have the following numbers in the Miscellaneous field: 1, 10, 3, 04, and 02. 

(4) If you then use the Sort Assignments dialog to sort by the Miscellaneous field, the fields will be sorted in the following order: 02, 04, 1, 10, and 3. Notice that the 3 comes after the 10. 

(5) To get Grade Machine to sort the numbers in numerical order, the Miscellaneous fields should have been entered as 2-digit numbers, e.g., 01, 02, 03, 04, and 10, with zeroes before numbers less than 10. 

Collapse Assignments (Utilities Menu)

The Collapse Assignments feature in the Utilities menu is useful If you find yourself carrying along too many assignments from previous grading periods, because you can collapse those individual assignments into one assignment. 

1) For example, suppose your first grading period is called Quarter 1, the first category in that grading period is called Homework, and you have five homework assignments in that grading period worth 10 points each for a total of 50 points possible. 
2) If you give the command to Collapse Assignments for Quarter 1 through Quarter 1 using the Grading Period option and 
3) Check the box for Only for Category Homework, then all Quarter 1 Homework assignments will be replaced by a single assignment which you can name whatever you like in the Description for New Assignment box, worth 50 points possible.

ALTHOUGH THERE IS NO UNDO FOR THE COLLAPSE ASSIGNMENTS FEATURE, YOU CAN CAN EFFECT THE SAME RESULT BY CLOSING WITHOUT SAVING OR REVERTING YOUR CLASS.

Attention to the following IMPORTANT TIPS will enable you to avoid changing students' grades when collapsing assignments:

1) If you have Excused (ex) scores for students and you chose Ignore Category Weights in the Grading Periods, dialog ,do the following before you collapse assignments: 

a) Go to the Assignments window and enter 1 in the Category column for each assignment in the grading period that you are collapsing. 

b) This will ensure that the overall grades won't change due to Excused (ex) scores.

c) If you chose Use Category Weights in the Class menu's Grading Periods dialog, then ignore this precaution.

2) If you are collapsing a grading period, only choose Use grading period weights in the Overall Summaries 
3) This will insure that any grade scaling which occurs during the collapsing of the assignments will not alter the student's overall summary grades. 
4) If the new collapsed assignment you are creating is placed into a category which already exists in your Class file, e.g., Tests, Homework, etc., then it will be factored into the grading period and overall summary grades.

5) This means that if you delete the original assignments and use the Delete Original Assignments checkbox in the Collapsed Assignments dialog, the student's grades will be altered. 
6) To prevent this from occurring, create a new category or grading period with a weight of 0% and collapse the assignment into this category or grading period. The original assignments will then be left intact.

NOTE: Grade Machine cannot store individual scores larger than 3000 points.

7) So when you use Collapse Assignments, you might see this message: Points Possible Exceed 3000-Point Limit. 
8) If you click OK, then the points will be adjusted proportionally. 
9) Make sure you have followed the above TIP 1 if you chose Ignore Category Weights in the Grading Periods dialog in the Class menu. 
10) This action will not affect anyone's grade, unless you have selected the Ignore Grading Period Weights option in the Class menu's Overall Summaries dialog. 

11) If you have selected that option, be aware that in this case the collapsed assignments will not have as much influence on the overall, i.e., year-long, grade as the original assignments did if the original assignments totaled more than 3000 points.

The parts of the Utilities/Collapse Assignments dialog are described below:

Grading Period
If you select this option button, Grade Machine will collapse assignments for the grading period you have selected in the first pop-up menu through the grading period you have selected in the second pop-up menu.
Overall Summary
If you select this option, the pop-up menu will display the grading period you have created for the summary, e.g., Semester 1.
Assignments Selected in Assignment Window
This option refers to the assignments you have highlighted in the Assignments window.

Only for Category
Use this checkbox to collapse assignments in a single category across all grading periods.
Description for New Assignment

1) Create a name for the collapsed assignment. 
2) The name will appear in the Assignments and Scores windows as the title of the collapsed assignment.

Points Possible for New Assignment
Check this box if you want to scale the collapsed assignment to a different amount of points possible for the grade than 100.
Create in Category ________ of Grading Period ________
The two pop-up menus, represented by underlines above, determine the location of the collapsed assignment in both 

1) the category and 
2) the grading period of your choice.

Delete Original Assignments
This checkbox determines whether you will see 

1) the collapsed assignment and the original assignments 
2) or just the collapsed assignment. 

NOTE: That you may want to leave this box unchecked due to there being NO UNDO FOR COLLAPSING ASSIGNMENTS, which will allow you to view the data for the Grading Period, Overall Summary, or Assignments Selected in the Assignment Window.

Restore This Score (Utilities Menu)

1) Each time you change any regular numeric score into a Special Score, the original numeric score is automatically saved in a list that is stored in each Class file. 
2) So, if you change your mind later and want to change a Special Score back to its original value, move to the cell containing that Special Score in the Scores Window, and select Restore This Score from the Utilities menu. 

WARNING: This list will not function properly if the assignments or students have been sorted or deleted since the list was created.

Restore All Scores (Utilities Menu)

1) Each time you change any regular numeric score into a Special Score, the original numeric score is automatically saved in a list that is stored in each Class file. 
2) If you want to change all Special Scores back to their original values, use Restore All Scores. 

NOTE: Not all Special Scores will be changed to numerical values -- just those which you had used to replace some original numerical value.

WARNING: This list will not function properly if the assignments or students have been sorted or deleted since the list was created.

Reset Saved Score List (Utilities Menu)

1) Each time you change any regular numeric score into a Special Score, the original numeric score is automatically saved in a list that is stored in each Class file. 

2) Since this list of original scores takes up memory, you can choose Reset Saved Score List to erase the list.
3) Using this feature renders it impossible to use the Restore This Score and Restore All Scores features.

Curve Scores (Utilities Menu)

The Curve Scores dialog in the Utilities menu controls how Grade Machine goes about curving scores in the Scores window once you hit the OK button.

NOTES: 

1) This feature can only be used when the Scores window contains scores and is active.

2) Save your class before applying the Curve Scores feature. That way, if you curve scores and don't like the results you can Revert your class rather than finding yourself in the position of needing to re-enter data.

The parts of the Utilities/Curve Score dialog are described below:

Curve to Highest Score for Assignment

1) Changes an assignment's value in the Points column of the Assignments window, so that it matches the highest score achieved for that assignment. 
2) The Weight of the assignment will be changed automatically, so that the Adjusted Points will be unchanged. 
3) If the highest score exceeds the points possible for that assignment, the scores will not be curved.

Curve to Highest Score for All Assignments

1) Changes each assignment's value in the Points column of the Assignments window, so that it matches the highest score achieved for each particular assignment. 
2) The Weight of each assignment will be changed automatically, so that the Adjusted Points will be unchanged. 
3) If the highest score exceeds the points possible for that assignment, the scores will not be curved.

Multiply All Scores for Assignment

1) Use Multiply All Scores to multiply the students' scores on a particular assignment by a given factor.
2) To curve your overall grading scale, use the arrows in the Grading Scales dialog from the Class menu.

Drop Lowest Score (Utilities Menu)

The Drop Lowest Score dialog in the Utilities menu drops the lowest score achieved by a student, either in 

1) a particular category, 
2) grading period, 
3) or overall. 

NOTE: The Scores window has to be open prior to using the Drop Lowest Score feature.

The parts of the Utilities/Drop Lowest Score dialog are described below:

Category/Overall

1) Allows you to drop the lowest score in a particular category or across all categories. 
2) For example, if you wanted to drop the lowest test score from your Tests category, then you would click the Category button and select Tests from the list box.

Grading Period/Overall

Allows you to drop the lowest score 

1) in a particular grading period 
2) or across all grading periods.

Overall Summary/Overall
Allows you to drop the lowest score for the overall summary grade.

Lowest Points/Lowest Percentage

1) The Lowest Points option will drop a 9 out of 10 score before an 80 out of 100. 
2) Alternately, the Lowest Percentage option would drop the 80 out of 100 score before the 9 out of 10.

NOTE: If you have assigned weights to individual assignments in the Assignments window, then the number of adjusted points, i.e., raw points times weight is used to determine which score is the lowest.

Avoid Dropping Zero Scores box

Checking this box means that Grade Machine will ignore zero scores when determining the lowest score to drop. This would preserve a penalty for not handing in assignments, for example.

Pick Students (Utilities Menu)

1) Pick Students, located in the Utilities menu, allows you to randomly select one student or a group of students from your seating chart. 

2) This is handy for randomly choosing students for class drills or cooperative groups.

SHORTCUT: In the Seating window, click the Pick Student(s) button to randomly select a student for class drills, and one student's name will appear on the screen. 

1) If you continue to click the Pick Student(s) button, a different student will be selected each time until everyone in the class has been selected. 

2) Then, a message will appear telling you that Pick Student(s) has been reset and that all students are once again eligible to be picked. 

3) To prevent Pick Student(s) from picking students with certain attendance codes:

a) Open the Class/Attendance Codes dialog.

b) Click to highlight the appropriate code. 

c) Then click the Edit button to open the Edit Attendance Code dialog. 

d) Uncheck the Include in Report checkbox. 

e) Do this for each attendance code. 

f) For example, if you do not want to pick students who are Excused, click the Excused code in the list to highlight it, then click Edit. Make sure that the Include in Report box is unchecked.

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