Create an Assignment in a Combined Course with Different Due Dates for Each Section

The steps below are to guide instructors who have a combined course and want to create an assignment folder for their combined course, with different due dates for each section in their course. It combines the steps for creating an assignment and using special access. This allows for only one grade item but offered different due dates. If your due dates are identical for all sections in your combined course, then you should instead follow the Create an Individual or Group Assignment since no special access for alternate due dates will be needed.

Example setup: You have 2 sections (section 010 and section 020). When you create the assignment, the due date you set on the create assignment page will apply for all users. When you set special access, you can select one of the sections (section 020 for example) and set a different due date for those students. This will mean that the assignment due date that was once for all users will only apply to those who did not get special access.

    1. On the nav bar, click the Activities menu, then select Assignments.
      Assignments on Nav Bar
    2. On the Assignment page, click New Assignment.
      New Assignment Button
    3. Enter a Name. By default, the assignment name will say “Untitled.” Be sure to change this. Note: Naming convention is important. Make sure the assignment name matches what you have in your syllabus.
      Assignment Name
    4. If your assignment is ungraded, then no changes are needed for the Grade Out Of field. You can skip ahead to step 6.
      Grade Out Of
    5. If your assignment is graded:
      • In the Grade Out of field, click Ungraded. Enter a points value. If there’s also an associated grade item, maintain consistency by matching the value of the Out Of field to the grade item’s Max Points value in Grades. Make sure the out of score also matches your syllabus.
        Grade Out of with Points
      • Click In Gradebook, then Edit or Link to Existing and either:
        In Grades menu

        • Create and link to a new grade item.
          1. This will create a new grade item with the same name as your new assignment with the point value set in the Grade Out Of field in the previous step.
            Assignment Create new
          2. Click Choose Grade Category.  
            Assignment Create choose grade category
          3. In the Grade Category dropdown menu choose an existing Grade Category or select No Category.
            Assignment Create Grade Item Select Grade Category
          4. Click Change Grade Type & Scheme.  Note: Only Numeric or Selectbox grade items can be associated with assignment. Choose either:
            Assignment Grade Item Type

              • Numeric Grade Item: Grade items by assigning a value out of a specified total number of points. Optional: Select a Grade scheme for this grade item. Default scheme is %.
                Assignment create Grade Item grade type numeric
              • Selectbox: Grade users by selecting the grade scheme level that best matches their achievement. Select a Grade scheme for this grade item. If you need to create a specific scheme for this assignment, follow the steps on the Grading Schemes page.
                Assignment create Grade Item grade type selectbox
        • (Recommended) Link to an existing grade item. This will allow you to choose any grade items not associated to other activities. Note: Only numeric and selectbox grade items can be associated with assignment.
          Assignments Link to Existing Grade Item
        • Optional settings are: Not in Gradebook, or Reset to Ungraded.
    6. Set Due Date by anywhere in the due date field.
      Assignments Click Due Date
      Then select a date from the calendar, and enter the time the assignment will be due. By default the time will be 11:59 PM.
      Assignments Due Date Calendar
      The due date specifies a time when the assignment is expected to be completed. An assignment is flagged as late if it is submitted after the due date. Due dates are automatically added to the course calendar. Note: If a due date is set, the student is notified two days prior to this date on the Pulse app and will appear on the TCU Online calendar for students enrolled in the course and on the general course calendar.
    7. Provide assignment expectations, requirements, and instructions to students in the Instructions text field. Click the elipsis (three dots) within the HTML editor for additional text editing options. Use the HTML editor to format text, add links, images, and embed multimedia. Learn more about how to Format HTML Course Content.
      Assignment Instructions
    8. Optional:
      Assignment Optional Attachments

      • Upload a file: Click the icon to Add a File Assignment File Upload from your computer as an attachment to your Assignment Instructions. Once it is uploaded, click Add.
        Assignment File Upload Add File
      • Insert a Quicklink: Click the Quicklinks icon Assignment Link to Existing Activity to Insert a quicklink to course activities or content.
        Assignment Insert Quicklink
      • Link to a website: Click the Weblink icon Assignment Attach Weblink to link to create a link to a website. Enter a URL and Title (this is the link your students will click), then click Insert.
        Assignment Website Link
      • Attach a Google Drive file: Click the Google Drive icon Assignment Attach from Google Drive to Continue to Google Drive, then select a document you wish to share with your students.
      • Record Audio or Record Video: Click the links to create audio or videos for your Assignment.
        Record Audio or Record Video buttons
    9. Optional Visibility: By default, assignments are visible to students upon creation. If you wish to hide the assignment from students completely, click the visibility toggle on the bottom of the assignment creation page. If the eyeball icon displayed, the students can see the assignment. If the eyeball icon has a line through it, the assignment is hidden from students.  Note: Follow the steps in the Set Availability and Conditions section below to set start/end dates for the assignment if you wish to control student access by date
      • Visible:
        Assignment Visible
      • Hidden:
        Assignment Hidden
    10. Select the title on the Availability and Conditions panel to expand these options and set your preferences.
      Assignment Availability
    11. Start and End Dates. The start date determines when an assignment becomes available to students. The end date determines when an assignment becomes unavailable to students. Note: The End Date affects the TurnItIn settings when visiting the TurnItIn tab (We recommend setting the “End Date” and “Due Date“).  If an assignment has no due date but has an end date, students will be notified two days prior to the end date via the Pulse app, and will appear on the TCU Online calendar for students enrolled in the course and on the general course calendar. To set Start and End Dates: Click in the Start or End Date fields to select a date from the calendar.
      Assignment Start and End DatesOnce a date is selected, the time field will appear. By default the time will be set as 12:01 AM. Instructors can override by clicking in the time field and selecting a new time, or typing the time in the field and clicking enter/return on their keyboard.
      Assignment Date Time
    12. Optional: Set Release Conditions by clicking Add Release Condition.  Learn more about Release Conditions for Assignments.
      Assignment Release Conditions
    13. Important: In order to set different due dates for each section, you will need to setup Special Access. Set Special Access by clicking Manage Special Access.
      Assignment Special Access
    14. Select Allow users with special access to submit outside the normal availability dates for this folder then click Add Users to Special Access.
      Assignments Special Access
    15. On the Special Access page, Set Dates: In the Properties area, check the boxes for Has Due Date, Has Start Date, and Has End Date. These dates will set the due date and availability for the students with special access to the assignment. By default, the dates that display are the ones set for the assignment, edit these as needed to set the alternate date for the section you wish to have a different due date.
    16. In the Users area, select the View By dropdown menu and select Sections, then click Apply.
      Users View by Sections
    17. A new dropdown menu will appear. Click the menu, and select the section for which you wish to apply the new date date. Then click Apply.
      Users Select Specific section
    18. Check the box at the top of the users table to select all of the students in the list below. Tip: If you have a large class, change the # per page dropdown menu on the bottom right corner of the screen to view a larger quantity of students at a time.
      Users Select Top Row to Select All Students
    19. Click Save.
    20. On the Manage Special Access page, the list of students you just set special access for will display. Each will display their name, new due dates, and each will have a pencil icon on the far right side of the screen in case you need to edit a specific student’s due date. Click Save and Close.
      Manage Special Access with Students listed
    21. You will now be taken back to the Create/Edit Assignment page. Under Special Access, it will now display the number of students who have special access. At any time you can return to Manage Special Access to add new special access for students, or modify their existing special access.
      Special Access in Assignments # of users
    22. Select the title on the Submission and Completion panel to expand these options and set your preferences.
      Assignment Submission and Completion
    23. Optional: Assign a Category to organize & group types of assignments together: From the Assignment Category dropdown menu, select the category you wish to organize this assignment into. By default, all assignments will be created in “No Category.”
      Assignment No Category

      By default, assignments are created with no category.

      Assignment with Category Selected

      Select the Assignment Category you want to from the list of previously created categories.

      If you haven’t created categories and want to do this later you can continue creating your assignment, then follow these steps to Move an Assignment into an Existing Assignment Category at a later time.

    24. Select the Assignment Type. Note: Once you have determined if it is a group or individual assignment, it cannot be changed. You will have to create a new assignment.
      Assignment TypeChoose one of the following:

      • Individual assignment (default) –  This is for all students to submit into one assignment.
      • Group assignment– Group assignments enables you to have one submission per group, but you first must associate the assignment with a Group Category. Any group member can submit and view files for a group assignment. When grading group assignments, the grade and assignment feedback will automatically go to all members of the group. Learn more about Group Categories.
    25. Select a Submission Type. Note: Once you have determined the type of assignment, it cannot be changed. You will have to create a new assignment.
      Assignment Submission Type
      Choose one of the following:

      • File submission (default) – Students will upload a file. See the list of approved file types for the Assignments tool. Select this option to collect papers or homework online. This is the default setting.
      • Text submission – Students will type or paste content into the html editor (text box); students will not be able to upload files. Select this option if you need students to submit a link or another small piece of data (such as a group name or presentation date preference).
      • On paper submission – Students will physically submit their paper to the instructor; students will not be able to upload files. Select this option if you will collect papers in person or if the student work is not able to be uploaded to TCU Online, but you still wish to leave feedback for students in the Assignments tool.TCU Online displays information to students that indicates if this item has been completed. Since there is no physical submission, you will then select how this determination should be made: manually by students (students themselves click a button to make TCU Online show that this item has been completed; this is the default setting), automatically on evaluation (TCU Online will show this item has been completed once you publish a score or feedback for this item),  automatically on due date (TCU Online will show this item has been completed on the due date associated with this assignment; you must enter a due date in the restrictions tab for this assignment). Note: Once you have determined the method for marking an item as complete, it cannot be changed. You will have to create a new assignment. 
      • Observed in person – Students will perform or deliver their work to their instructor; students will not be able to upload files. Select this option if you will evaluate in-class presentations, productions, or works of art and you wish to leave feedback to students in the Assignments tool.TCU Online displays information to students that indicates if this item has been completed. Since there is no physical submission, you will then select how this determination should be made: manually by students (students themselves click a button to make TCU Online show that this item has been completed; this is the default setting), automatically on evaluation (TCU Online will show this item has been completed once you publish a score or feedback for this item),  automatically on due date (TCU Online will show this item has been completed on the due date associated with this assignment; you must enter a due date in the restrictions tab for this assignment). Note: Once you have determined the method for marking an item as complete, it cannot be changed. You will have to create a new assignment.
    26. Set your preferences for Submissions. These vary based on which Submission type you set in step 3.
        • If you selected File Submission:
          • Select your preference for Files Allowed Per Submission: Unlimited or One File.
          • The Allowable File Extensions field provides options for the types of files that students can submit for the assignment.
            When enabled, students would see a list of allowable file extensions on the assignment submission page.

            Student View - Allowable File Extensions

            Student View of Assignment with “Annotatable Files” selected for Allowable File Extensions

            Students who upload files that are not allowed will see the following error message:

            Invalid File Type Message

            Invalid File Type message displays on the upload window.

            Options in the drop down menu include:

            • No Restrictions (Default) will allow students to upload any file type to the assignment folder. Files must be on the Acceptable Files Types list.
              Allowable File Extensions - No Restrictions
            • .PDF only
              Allowable File Extensions - PDF Only
            • Annotatable files: which include all file types that are supported by the Annotation tool in Assignments. For the complete list of file types, see File types supported by Annotations.
              Allowable File Extensions - Annotatable Files
            • Files that can be previewed without any conversion: Includes.HTM, .HTML, .MHT, .MHTML, and .BMP
              Allowable File Extensions - Files that can be previewed without any conversion
            • Images and videos
              Allowable File Extensions - Images and Videos
            • Custom file types. If an instructor selects Custom File Extensions, they can then enter file extensions that are allowed for file submissions. The custom file types must be on the Acceptable Files Types list.
              Allowable File Extensions - Custom
          • Select your preference for Submissions: All submissions are kept, Only the most recent submission is kept, or Only one submission allowed.
          • Optional Notification Email: To receive an email message when a new submission is uploaded to this assignment, enter your email address, or a comma-separated list of email addresses in the Notification Email field. Enter your email address if you wish to receive an email each time a submission is made to the Assignment by a student.
            Assignment File Submission
        • If you selected Text submission:
          • Select your preference for Submissions: All submissions are kept, Only the most recent submission is kept, or Only one submission allowed.
          • Optional Notification Email: To receive an email message when a new submission is uploaded to this assignment, enter your email address, or a comma-separated list of email addresses in the Notification Email field. Enter your email address if you wish to receive an email each time a submission is made to the Assignment by a student.
            Assignment Text submission
        • If you selected On paper submission:
          • Select your preference for Marked as completed: Manually by students, Automatically on evaluation, Automatically on due date.
            Assignment On Paper Submission
        • If you selected Observed in person:
          • Select your preference for Marked as completed: Manually by students, Automatically on evaluation, Automatically on due date.
            Assignment Observed In Person
    27. Select the title on the Evaluation and Feedback panel to expand these options and set your preferences.
      Assignment Evaluation and Feedback
    28. Optional – Rubrics: To associate a rubric to the assignment, click Add Rubric to either Create New or Add Existing rubrics. For more information, see Associate a Rubric with an Activity.
      Assignment Rubric
    29. Optional – Learning ObjectivesNote: TCU does not utilize this tool. 
    30. Optional – Annotation Tool (on by default). If you wish to use the annotation tool, check the box for Make annotation tools available for assessment. Learn more about Using Annotations for Instructor Feedback in the Assignments Tool.
      Assignment Annotation checkbox
    31. Optional – ePortfolio: To allow students to add the assignment to their ePortfolio as an artifact, select Allow users to add this assignment to their ePortfolio.
    32. Optional – Anonymous Marking: Choose whether you want to hide student names during assessment. For more information, please see Anonymous Marking of Assignment Submissions
      Assignment Anonymous Marking
    33. Optional – TurnItIn Feedback Studio & GradeMark: Click Manage TurnItIn. For more information, please see Enable Turnitin for an assignment. IMPORTANT for Combined Courses with different due dates:The use of Turnitin combined with the special access features in the Assignments tool is not supported. If you set a due date for a student with special access that is different than the due date set on the Turnitin tab, the Turnitin due date does not change.
      Assignment Manage Turnitin
    34. Click Save and Close.