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D. Hiden Ramsey Library, University of North Carolina at Asheville

Moodle Teacher Guide: Calculating Grades

This guide offers information, advice and resources on how to create an effective online course.

Grade Calculations

With all aggregation methods except Natural, Moodle calculates grades in three steps - 1) normalization of individual grade items, 2) aggregation of all grades, and 3) calculation of the final grade.  This page explains the three steps and how to customize settings in the gradebook to produce different types of grade calculations.


Step 1: Normalization of individual grade items

Moodle normalizes items that are graded on different point scales so that all grades are rendered to a common base value. Normalization is done by dividing the earned grade value by the maximum possible points.

For example:

Grade Item       Points Earned       Maximum Possible Points       Calculation     Normalized Grade
Assignment 1  70 100 70 ÷ 100 =          0.7
Assignment 2 20 80 20 ÷ 80 = 0.25
Assignment 3 10 10 10 ÷ 10 = 1.0


Return to Grade Calculations menu

Step 2: Aggregation

Aggregation involves bringing individual grades together and performing some calculation. Aggregation types can be configured for a single gradebook category or for an entire gradebook. Moodle offers several types of aggregation. For more information on how to use different aggregation types in Moodle, see the page in this guide called Aggregation types.



Configure an aggregation type

  • Administration block > click Grades
  • From the drop down list at the top of the page, select Categories and items > Simple view
  • Use the drop down lists under the Aggregation column to select an aggregation type


categories and items grade aggregation drop down


  • Click the Save changes button at the bottom of the screen



Aggregate only non-empty grades (default setting) - generates a category or course grade that does not include grade items with missing or empty grades. 

  • Grades > Categories and items > Simple view
  • click the Edit button under the Actions column

categories and items edit button

  • under Grade category section > add check to Aggregate only non-empty grades (may need to click Show more...)
  • Click Save changes


Return to Grade Calculations menu

Step 3: Calculate Final Course Grade

The final category or course grade is calculated by multiplying the aggregated value (Step 2) to the category or course total.


categories and items category total


Example (using Mean of grades aggregation)

A1 = 70/100, A2 = 20/50, A3 = 90/100, A4 = 100/100 with a category total of 100

(0.7 + 0.4 + 0.9 + 1.0) / 4 = 0.75

Final grade calculation = 0.75 x the category total

Final grade calculation = 0.75 x 100 = 75

Note: If the category total equaled 50, then the final grade calculation would be 0.75 x 50 = 37.5



Return to Grade Calculations menu