Canvas Gradebook

The Canvas gradebook features a slick interface, accessible controls, robust data organization and filtering, and helpful grade management options.


  • Column and row filtering
  • Default grading options
  • Communication tools
  • Grading policies to improve efficiency
  • Multiple views
  • Grade history

Getting Started

Instructor Resources

Locating the Gradebook

To access your Canvas Gradebook, open your course and click on the Grades link in the course menu.

Navigating the Gradebook

Familiarize yourself with the Canvas Gradebook and the various colors and symbols contained within.

  1. When a cell is active, it is marked with a bold blue border and the entire row is highlighted.
  2. Each row is marked by alternating colors.
  3. Color-codes indicate the grading status of assignment submission. Possible statuses include late (blue), missing (red), resubmitted (green), dropped (orange), excused (yellow), or none (clear).
  4. The Search function allows searching for individual students.
  5. Columns associated with unpublished assignments are clearly labeled and can be shown or hidden in the new gradebook. Unpublished assignments are not visible to students, and columns associated with unpublished assignments do not appear in the student Grades view.  To hide unpublished assignments from your own view, select View=>Columns=>Unpublished Assignments to show or hide such columns. 

The gradebook interface in Canvas

You can use the keyboard shortcuts to navigate the gradebook. Press the Escape key before using the shortcuts. For a list of shortcuts, click the keyboard icon to access accessibility directly on the interface.Accessibility icon in Canvas gradebook

Viewing ISU-specific columns

The gradebook columns available in Canvas at Iowa State UniversityThere are several additional columns available to display in your gradebook:

  • Section
  • Major
  • College
  • Classification
  • ISU ID
  • Net ID
  • Student Groups (you must create the group sets inside your course shell before you can add the group column to your gradebook; a column is created for each group set)

To show/hide these columns:

  1. Navigate to ISU AdminTools.
  2. Choose Show/Hide Gradebook Columns.
  3. Next to each column name you will see a toggle switch. Click the Off toggle; it will change to On and your gradebook will now include the column.

Arranging Gradebook columns

Organize columns by specific criterionThe Gradebook allows control over the order of your grade columns:

  • Place the Total column anywhere in the gradebook. Click on the three dots next to the column’s title, drag and drop the column to re-position. You can re-order any column in this way.
  • Arrange the columns using criteria in the Arrange By option in the View menu that appears in the upper left-hand corner of your gradebook. Your columns can be arranged alphabetically in an ascending or descending order, by lowest and highest score, by oldest or newest assignment due date, and by module placement.
  • Change the width of each column by placing your cursor over the edge of the column, holding and dragging the line until the column is re-sized.

Filtering Gradebook data

There are several ways in which you can filter student data in the Gradebook:

  1. Filter columns by Assignment Groups, Modules, and Sections by selecting the Filter option from the View menu.
  2. Filter further by using the drop-down menus that appear after you set the filtering preferences.
  3. Inside each column, sort by ascending and descending grades and by the grading status (late, missing, resubmitted, excused, dropped or none). Click on the three dots next to the column title to sort by any of these criteria.

Data filtering in the gradebook

Grade Management

The new gradebook offers options to manage grades:

  • Assign a grading status and thus color-code assignment submissions. Navigate to View=>Statuses. You can change the color codes for late, missing, re-submitted, dropped and excused submissions by clicking on the three dots next to each status. Colored grading statuses allow you to quickly judge assignment submission progress across the course.
  • Use the Grade Detail TrayTray in the gradebook  when you click on the arrow inside any cell. The Grade Detail Tray allows you to enter or edit grades, change the grading status of a submission, and leave comments for a student.
  • Create policies for late submissions by clicking on the wheel wheel in gradebook in the upper-right hand corner of the gradebook. Grading policies can automatically assign zero points for missing submissions and apply deductions for late submissions. Once enabled, late policies apply across all assignments inside a Canvas course shell.

Student Resources

Viewing grades in your Canvas course

Students do not have access to the Gradebook but are able to see their grades through their individual Grades page. See the following resources pertaining to Grades in Canvas:


Canvas is supported by Instructure. Use one of the following channels to connect with their 24/7 support:

  • live chat — open the ?Help menu in Canvas and click ‘Chat with Canvas Support’
  • ticket support — open the ?Help menu in Canvas and click ‘Report a Problem
  • phone support — call 515-294-4000, then follow the prompts for Canvas support

For problems with ISU AdminTools inside Canvas, contact the ISU Solution Center: / 515-294-4000.