There is no doubt that digital transformation has taken over the world—well, most of it anyway. Many industries, especially the education sector, have adapted to the move towards digitization. Although some industries have raised objections and showed resistance towards this change, the education sector was more than happy to embrace it. The education sector has apparently been experiencing disruption from fast-emerging technology and learning solutions. Among the most popular e-learning trends in the education industry is the integration and use of the cloud-based digital grade book.
Digital Gradebook: What is It?
A digital gradebook is one of the most popular e-learning tools that has changed the way student assessments are done in schools and educational institutions. It basically refers to the online version of a physical gradebook—one that teachers use to input student grades and academic progress. The only difference is the digital gradebook allows parents to be involved in their children’s education by giving them instant access to information and transparency regarding their children’s progress.
Modern online gradebooks are usually web-based software that provides access to teachers, students, parents, and school staff, which results to efficient academic information sharing and communication. This means that digital gradebooks do not only show a student’s grades, but it also includes other things such as assignments or homework information, instructor notes, feedback, academic files (which can be downloaded), student and parent inquiries and etc. Therefore, it’s more than just a grade book.
In this article we will be enumerating the many ways teachers and students can benefit from using digital gradebooks. Stick around to find out more.
Benefits of Cloud-based Digital Gradebooks
Teaching is a very fulfilling vocation, but it doesn’t come without any challenges. It is no longer enough for teachers to be able to provide instructions well to succeed. They also need to know how to manage huge amounts of data and information throughout the school year effectively. As a result, many teachers end up getting overwhelmed by the influx of data concerning students’ attendance, assignments, homework, grades, and even lunch orders. Managing all of these mean teachers don’t have time to focus on improving their teaching strategies.
With the emergence of digital gradebooks, teachers no longer have to deal with maintaining and protecting hundreds to thousands of student grading documents all by themselves. The innovations that digital gradebooks provide has allowed teachers to easily, quickly, and efficiently input students’ grades.
Digital gradebooks also allow teachers to include notes for every grade they give. Once they input these, the information is saved and protected without additional need for reinforcement. Most digital gradebooks are cloud-based, meaning every piece of information can be stored, analyzed, and retrieved easily and at any time necessary.
In addition, teachers are also no longer required to provide counseling to students for every other assignment. They also don’t need to share student performance with parents anymore, nor they have to check countless unread emails. And because students get 24/7 access to their grades, activity calendars, assignments, notes, feedback, and etc., teachers no longer have to answer queries with regards to a student’s performance or their grades. Teachers know very well how much time they end up wasting on answering such queries.
After grading each students’ assignments, teachers usually have to report the results to different stakeholders, namely the students and school administrators. All tasks related to grading and assignment/homework can be exhausting and time-consuming for teachers. But schools and educational institutions can help take the load off teachers by investing in a cloud-based digital grade book. Digital gradebooks are updated regularly to automate school-related tasks.
With digital gradebooks, tasks like comparing grades, creating progress reports, and checking past information all become a lot easier and quicker to do. Teachers don’t have to come up with handwritten reports for each student. Gradebooks can easily produce progress reports for different classes in minutes. Because there are less questions and the reporting process is made easier, teachers get to have more free time to build skills and improve their teaching strategies.
Digital gradebooks provide an efficient means of two-say direct communication with students. Network admins are always around to keep the communication channels open 24/7.
Digital gradebooks have made school-related tasks and activities a lot easier for students the same way they did for teachers. They have provided students with a new way to learn. A digital grade book measures different aspects of a student’s academic life, and they also help students set their own academic goals, evaluate their progress, and determine which areas they need to improve on.
Students are not only able to view their course grades, but they also get real-time feedback from available instructors. Students can view these feedbacks any time they want. Students can add annotations to the assigned grades so they can remember the mistakes they made. This will allow them to see which parts they got wrong, and how they can avoid making the same mistake again. Students can plan their work easily because they can view due dates for assignments and extra-curricular activities.
Majority of digital gradebooks on the market feature a notification system alerting students the minute their grades are updated. Students can also ask questions about their grades and receive quick responses regarding them this way. They can log in on the system any time, they can check the list of ongoing and upcoming assignments, and they can download any learning materials and files they need related to it. They can also read instructor notes in these gradebooks.
Research shows that digital gradebooks help improve student performance. Using a reliable digital grade book is said to improve student’s grades by 5-8% and reduce the chances of missed homework by 40%.
As educators, we shouldn’t hesitate to embrace the digital transformation that’s happening in our times. Technology will always improve, and the education sector can only adapt to it or fall behind by keeping the old ways. Schools should take the necessary steps to switch to digital gradebooks as soon as they can. There are various digital gradebooks you can choose from online, but make sure you consider the different features that make each unique from one another. Before you purchase a digital grade book, use a trial version first and choose which one you think suits your needs the best.