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Brightspace – Grading Schemes

How to Use Gradebook Schemes 

Schemes are used in grades to build custom views and grade experiences. They translate grade item points into symbols in the Grades display. 

You can build a letter grade scheme if you want to grade students on A-F scale. You are able to apply the scheme to a item or the whole gradebook. Instead of 95% displaying to student, an A would display.

Build a Scheme 

Go to Grades & Feedback > Grades: Schemes >New Scheme 

Customize a new Scheme 

When creating a customized scheme, you are required to

  • Name it through Symbol
  • Specify the beginning of range values through Start %

Ranges are where you will enter the values associated with your Scheme.

You are able to add more Range rows as needed.

For example, when creating a Letter Grade Scheme: 

  1. The required Symbol is what is displayed when the scheme is applied ( F, D, C, B, A). 
  2. The required  Start % defines the starting threshold for the proficiency range of each symbol. (F starts at 0, D starts at 60, C starts at 70, etc…). 
  3. The optional  Color allows you to choose colors as a visual cue to identify grade trends.  
  4. The optional Assigned Value % defines the numeric grade you want learners to achieve when you evaluate them using this grade scheme.

    Important when using non-numeric grades.

  5. The Recycle Bin icon within the “Remove” column allows you to remove any extra ranges. 
  6. Save 

Implement a Scheme 

After you have made your scheme, there are two ways to implement it. The first is to apply it to your whole gradebook; the second is to apply it to select items of your gradebook. Applying a scheme to the whole gradebook will make every column in your gradebook use that scheme. If you choose to only apply the scheme to select items instead, only those items will display that scheme.  

Apply to the Whole Gradebook 

Go to Grades & Feedback > Grades: Schemes > Select Scheme 

Click the Check Mark for the scheme you want to set as your default scheme. This will apply the selected scheme to all items in your gradebook unless you specify otherwise. 

Apply a Scheme to a Single Grade Item 

Go to Grades & Feedback > Grades: Manage GradesSelect a Grade Item > Edit > scroll almost to the bottom of page) Select Grade Scheme >  Save and Close.


Use a Scheme 

Once the scheme is implemented, you don’t need to do anything special to use it. As you enter in the points earned for each assessment, the scheme automatically displays the appropriate scheme symbol.


Manage Grades does not change. Enter Grades do. Verify that the “Grade scheme symbol” is checked for display either globally through Setting or by grade item > Edit.

If I’m using the letter grade scheme, when the range for B is 8-9 and I give a student an 8 out of 10 points, a B will be displayed in the gradebook. 


Link to D2L Brightspace Community Documentation-Create Grading Schemes using the Grades tool


Updated on December 20, 2023
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