(09-03-2021) The next release is scheduled in approximately four days. The release will contain the following:

  • Comprehension improvements: colors for topics

  • Zero rating on scale criteria

  • Pass/fail grade

  • Automated Feedback improvements

Bug fixes

  • Group selection process made clearer

  • Discussion steps can now be added back in after deletion

This release also contains some removals as announced in previous release:

  • Blackboard SOAP

  • LTI course/path requests

Comprehension improvements: colors for topics:

As the first improvement for the Comprehension redesign, we have added color differentiation for Comprehension topics.

After the release each new topic will automatically get a color assigned. Teachers can change the colors if they wish. All annotations within documents have the color of the corresponding topic.

The dots visible on progress bar that show where annotations are located will have same the color of the topic they belong to.

Zero rating on scale criteria

The way in which grades are calculated from scale ratings has changed. From now on grade points are proportional to the rating score on scale rating criteria. If there is a scale from 1 to 10 that is worth 20 points, students that receive a 1 will get 2 points. This is the new default setting. Existing assignments will keep on working the same as before, this new default will only apply to new assignments.

Before this change you would receive 0 points if you were given the lowest rating. This meant that grades would often come out lower than the teacher would expect. This change won't affect existing scale criteria.

In case teachers would like to use the previous way of scale rating grade calculation, teachers can opt out of this new behavior for each set of scale rating criteria by checking "Adjust lowest rating on scale to result in 0 grade points".

Once the reviewing process has started it will not be possible to change this setting and the checkbox will be disabled.

When setting up scale ratings teachers will see an information box explaining the change. All pre-existing criteria until the moment of release will have this option checked. When making a copy from a criteria or assignments the resulting criteria will always have the option unchecked, regardless of what was the case for the original ones since we want people to adopt this new behavior.

When configuring the grading, teachers will see an information tooltip on each criteria stating how many points students will get for the lowest and highest value on the scale.

Pass/fail grade

Teachers can now decide to have a pass/fail grade on their assignments or Interactive Study Materials.


In the grading module the teacher can set the passing grade threshold and also alter this value if needed in the future.

Before the teacher publishes the grades the students can see the amount needed to pass.

In addition to the final grade, the grading overview will show the teacher which of the students passed or failed.

After the teacher has published the grades the students can see if they have passed or failed along with the usual grade breakdown they would see.

Automated Feedback improvements

Some major improvements to the Automated Feedback project will be implemented. These changes are part of ongoing improvements to the product.

1. Student usefulness

Students can now indicate how useful each feedback outcome is for them. This will help to increase our understanding and support for students when the AI makes a mistake and determine the quality of our feedback.

2. Automated feedback templates
Instructors now have the opportunity to choose from 3 templates (thesis, essay and academic reports) that include a proposal of the related criteria we support. Moreover, they can also use the criteria that were used in their previous assignments set-up by selecting copy from recent. This can help instructors to save more time when setting up and getting familiar with the tool

4. Visualization of language support per criterion
When instructors are setting up the tool, they will now see if a criterion supports just English within the tool. This will help instructors to understand which criterion can be used for which type of writing assignment.

5. In tool explanations of the lifecycle of new criteria
Innovation requires constant learning. When new criteria are developed, they are going through several phases where they are actively being tested and evaluated. We have indicated each phase with a label that explains potential changes or errors that can be expected by students and instructors. More information about the lifecycle of (new) criterion can be read in this article.

6. Improved AI performance
Now that usage has started to pick up, we’ve been able to greatly enhance the performance Natural Language Processing modules. This results in a better performance for the entire system.


7. A few more UI improvements
Object has been rephrased to "mark as incorrect" and the feedback cards are better organized. This results in an overall smoother experience for student interacting with feedback received.

Bug fixes

Group selection process made clearer

When creating a group assignment, it was not clear to teachers they still need to click 'select groups' in order to configure groups. Also, the text stated "groups were last synced from LMS x minutes ago", giving the false impression for teachers that groups have been selected.

After the release, the assignment will indicate that the teacher needs to select groups as part of the assignment setup.

Discussion steps can now be added back in after deletion

Previously, when deleting the 'open discussion or 'reflection' step in Discussion Assignment, it was now possible to add them back.

After the release, it will be possible to add these steps back in after deleting them in 'edit' mode.

This release also contains some removals as announced in previous release:

  • Blackboard SOAP

  • LTI course/path requests

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