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Web Based Grading Software

This discussion is based off of the most asked questions that teachers have had when shopping around for an online gradebook, free gradebook programs and web based grading software. The questions have been gathered from various blogs, educational chat boards and from educational websites that promote technology and the use of a student management system.

Why would I choose a free gradebook software solution over a subscription web based gradebook software program?
This question is one of the most asked questions and topics of conversation that are out there for teachers. There really is no easy answer. What you need to do is put in some research time and compare the free gradebooks you have searched and narrow it down to the one that you find that has the most features and best user interface. This part of your research will cost you no money as you can sign up for free gradebook programs and tests drive them with no risk. Once you have decided on the free web based grading software, you will now have to search for the subscription based classroom grading software solution and make a best decision. The subscription based online gradebook you choose should be transparent with regards to the features and functions they provide. Take the advice of other educators when making this decision as you can learn a great deal about the great features and pitfalls that some of these grading programs for teachers can offer.

Do the free gradebooks offer real time communications with students and parents?
The answer to this question is Yes. Traditionally, the free gradebook programs were very teacher centric and were specifically used as a student management system. There are now free gradebook software providers like gradebookportal.com that have the added feature of student and parent web portals for students and parents to communicate with the teacher and monitor academic progress. Many of these free gradebook providers allow teachers to attach assignments to a class calendar and allow for students and parents to download the assignment. These assignments could be MS Word or Excel or PDF files as well as images.

Is there a distinguishing difference between a student management system and a web based gradebook or online gradebook?
The differences have been narrowed down to no visible differences at this point. As online gradebooks and web based grading software have evolved recently, they can perform all of the tasks as the traditional student management system. Traditionally the student management system was a client server based solution in schools that required you to load software. This was not a very mobile solution. The web based grading software and web based student management system evolved from the early versions of the client server student management system.

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