Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Setting up your Aspen Gradebook


Have you set up your gradebook yet?  
At the beginning of the year, you need to create the defaults for your class and also decide how Aspen will calculate grades for the year (e.g., using categories, points, or both).  
Until these steps are completed, you will not be able to add assignments to your gradebook.

The good news is Aspen has created a Reference guide to help you through your gradebook setup.  Check it out at Beginning of the Year Gradebook Checklist.

If you prefer an in person setting, there will also be a Gradebook workshop during the September 28th Professional Development.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Customize Columns in Aspen using Field Sets

When you click the "Students" tab in Aspen, you get a predefined set of information columns. Sometimes it's not the information you want.


Fortunately, you can customize the columns (fields) to suite your needs. In addition, you can save different sets of information for different situations (e.g., contacts, logins, birthdays, etc.) Here's how:

1. Click the Field Set button and select "Manage Field Sets..."



2. Click the +New button.



3. Type a name for your field set.

4. Select the information you want and click Add>>. Repeat as necessary.

5. Click Save.


6. Your new field set will show up at the bottom of the list. Use the ^Up button to move it further up in the list for convenience.

NOTE: Whichever field set is at the top of your list will become the default field set when you sign into Aspen. To change it temporarily, just click the Field Set button and select the one you want. To set the default, click the field set button, click "Manage Field Sets...", select the field set you want as default, and use the ^Up button to move it to the very top of the list.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

IT Issues? Put in a Help Desk Request

Just a reminder that when you have technology issues, you should put in a Help Desk Request (a.k.a. School Dude).

To find the Help Desk Request screen, go to this blog WPS-TechEd.blogspot.com and click on the Help Desk Request tab at the top of the page.




This link takes you to the Help Desk Open Support Ticket screen.  

Directions for submitting a ticket can be found at the bottom of the page.  

If you have never submitted a ticket before, see the link (under the yellow highlight) for directions.



Bookmark both the blog and the Help Desk page in your browser by clicking the star on the right side of the address bar.


Sunday, September 3, 2017

Sharing Google Drive Files and Folders with Parents

Have you ever shared a file from your Google Drive only to get the following message?


Here are two methods to share your files or folders with parents so they get them the first time.

Method 1: Share

1. Right-click your file/folder and select "Share".


2. Click Advanced.


3. Click Change.


4. Select "On - Anyone with the link" then click Save.


Now, whether you copy and paste the link into an email or website, or use the Drive icon to insert your file/folder into an email or website, parents will be able access your file/folder.

Method 2: Get shareable link


1. Right-click the file/folder you want to share and select "Get shareable link".


2. Turn on link sharing by moving the switch from left to right. 


NOTE: This shares your file or folder with WPS accounts only.


3. To share your file or folder with parents, click Share settings.


4. Click "Anyone at Winchester..."


5. Click More.


6. Select "On - Anyone with the link" then click Save.


Now, whether you copy and paste the link into an email or website, or use the Drive icon to insert your file/folder into an email or website, parents will be able access your file/folder.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Helping students and families reset their Aspen passwords






Have your students or their familes forgotten their passwords for Aspen?
Aspen’s Student and Family Portal users can reset their passwords quickly and easily.

A printable version of this post can be found at: Resetting your student of family portal password in Aspen

Resetting your password (Students)



  1. In your browser, go to the Winchester Public School’s Aspen Site (ma-winchester.myfollett.com)
  2. Click on the link to I forgot my password
    (see red arrow in image on right)


  3. The Password Reset pop-up screen will appear.




    1. Student Login ID’s are the numbers associated with your school Google Account.

    2. Student Primary Email accounts are their school Google account address including the wpsstudent.com.




    A password reset email will be sent to your Primary email address.  Login to that account and click on the link in the email to reset your Aspen password.
  1. The Password Reset pop-up will appear.  

    1. Type in your login ID and your Primary email if they do not automatically fill in.
    2. Answer the security question that you set up when you created your account.  An example of a security question is shown right.
  2. Remember the rules in resetting your password.  Passwords must be
    1. a minimum of 6 characters
    2. Include 1 number
    3. Include 1 capital letter
    4. Inlcude 1 lowercase letter
  3. Passwords cannot include
    1. Your first name
    2. Your middle name
    3. Your last name
    4. Your date of birth
    5. Your gmail numbers
    6. Any sequence of numbers (for example, 123456)



  1. Need help creating a strong password?  Check out this article on how to create a secure password that you will remember.



Resetting your password (Family Portal)
  1. In your browser, go to the Winchester Public School’s Aspen Site (ma-winchester.myfollett.com)
  2. Click on the link to I forgot my password
    (see red arrow in image on right)


  3. The Password Reset pop-up screen will appear.
    1. Family Portal Login ID’s are the email addresses that you shared with your student’s school for communication.

    2. Family Portal Primary Email are the same email address that you used in the Login ID.



  1. The Password Reset pop-up will appear.  

    1. Type in your login ID and your Primary email if they do not automatically fill in.
    2. Answer the security question that you set up when you created your account.  An example of a security question is shown right.






  2. A password reset email will be sent to your Primary email address.  Login to that account and click on the link in the email to reset your Aspen password.
  3. Remember the rules in resetting your password.  Passwords must be
    1. a minimum of 6 characters
    2. Include 1 number
    3. Include 1 capital letter
    4. Inlcude 1 lowercase letter
  4. Passwords cannot include
    1. Your first name
    2. Your middle name
    3. Your last name
    4. Your date of birth
    5. Your gmail numbers
    6. Any sequence of numbers (for example, 123456)



  1. Need help creating a strong password?  Check out this article on how to create a secure password that you will remember.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

How to enter Quarter 4 and Final Grades in Aspen

How to Enter Quarter 4 and Final Grades in Aspen


The steps to entering your Quarter 4 grades is similar to entering grades during any other quarter, but you have the additional step of also adding your Final Exam and Final Grade (FG) for the course.


To Post your Q4 grades in Aspen Gradebook,
  1. Go to the Scores page in your Gradebook
  2. In the Grade Columns drop down box, select Post Columns.  Also, set the Term to Q4.  
    (see yellow in image right)
  3. The Aspen Posting columns will appear.  These are
    • Q4Grd - Quarter 4 Grade
    • Final Exam - Final Exam
    • Q4ClsAbs - Quarter 4 Class Absences
    • Q4Com1 and Q4Com2 - Quarter 4 Comment 1 and Comment 2 fields
    • Q4 - The grade from your gradebook for quarter 4
    • FG - Final Grade
  1. Click the Update Post Columns button -OR-
    Select Options -> Update Post Columns
  2. This will take you through the Update Post Columns wizard.  (see images below)


  • Step 1. Select the Grade Term (Q4) and the Grades to update (all students).


  • Step 2. Select
  • Quarter 4 Grade = Average:Q4  
  • Final Exam = (Do Not Update)

  • Q4 Class Absence= Class Absence Total

  • Final Grade = District Calculation


Alternatively, you may add an assignment for the midterm grade and then automatically upload that grade by selecting it here.  
Your exam will be part of a category and will be part of the Q4 average AND the Final grade.  Thus, being factored twice. 
  • Step 3. Confirms the choices made in Step 1 and Step 2.


  1. Click Finish.
  2. You should notice that the Q4Grd and Q4ClsAbs fields will now be populated.
    ** Final Exam The field is blank.  You will add your Final exam grades into this column on the Post Columns - Term page.
    ** FG Please note: The grade is calculated using all assignments for the year (or semester for semester courses). It is not an average of the final grade for each semester divided by the number of semesters. Also note: The final exam grade will not be incorporated into this total until you add the final exam grade and click update.
  3. After you have added your Final Exam(1), click the Update button(2) in the  FG column.   Aspen will calculate the Final grade for you. ** If the student(s) did not take a final exam, leave this field blank.  Aspen will ignore empty scores.

  4. Pass/Fail Grades.  If your class is Pass/Fail, complete the steps in Update Post Columns.  This will give you the total absences for the student for the quarter.  Then add the P or F into the Q4Grd column.  All of the grades will have a red circle with a line through it.  This just means that you manually entered the grade.

  5. Pass/Fail Final Grade.  Don't forget to also update the FG field for Pass/Fail Grades.  You must manually add the P or F to the FG column.



  6.   Add comment codes (see WHS Comment Codes)


Verifying your Grades
  1. Verify your grade in Q4Grd against the grade from your Gradebook which is labeled Q4.
Q2PostColumns8.png
  1. If you would like to change the grade, simply click on the grade in the Q4Grd field and change it. Grades that you have modified will be indicated by a red, crossed-out circle.  PostGrades7.png


Applying the N-Rule (5 or more absences)
  1. In Aspen, you will apply the N-Rule using the comment fields
    • 100 N-Rule: May lose credit for course due to to attendance issues. Contact school administration.
    • 101 N-Rule: Loss of credit, due to attendance issues, under consideration. Contact school administration

black-pushpin.png

What does the pushpin mean?  
  • If the pushpin is black ,
    you can enter grades for this column, but you cannot post them to transcripts yet.
  • If the pushpin is green with a triangle ,
    you can enter and post grades for this column.
  • If the pushpin is red with a square ,
    you already posted the information to transcripts. If you need to change a grade, you will be able to repost your grade for 5 days after the report cards are distributed.  After that, you will need to complete the grade change form (see Guidance department).


POSTING Grades
Once you have verified the grades, added comments, and applied the N-Rule if necessary, you can Post your grades. Posting your grades sends a copy of the grades in the field Q2Grd, S1Exam, and MidGrade (and comments) to the report card / student transcript.

  1. Once the posting period has opened, the pushpin will turn from black to green.  The green signifies that you can post your grades.
  2. To Post your grades, click the Post Grades button -OR- click Option -> Post Grades
  3. The Post Grades pop-up will appear.
    Fill in
    • Grade Term = Q4
    • Grades to post = Term Grades for all Students.
  4. Click Ok
  5. Once your grades are posted, your push pin will change from green to red.
  6. You must Post Grades for each class individually.

HELP! I’m getting an error when I post my grades
PostError.png


If you get the error “This section has already been posted.  Posting again will overwrite grades currently on the transcript.  Do you want to continue?”
PostError2.png

Click YES.  The reason that you are getting this error is because you had seniors in the class and you already gave them grades and posted them.


As you continue, you should also receive the error “Withdrawn students with grades are present.  Would you like to include them in this post?”  
My answer is NO.  I have posted my grades for seniors already and do not want to make any changes.   






FAQs
    There will be no printed verification sheets.  Instead, you can verify your grades on the Post Columns page of your gradebook (see steps 10 and 11).
  • You may re-post your grades as many times as you please until the posting period ends.
  • Want a printable copy of this verification page?  
    • Select Reports -> Gradebook Sheet
    • The Gradebook Sheet will appear.  
    • Click Run.
    • The printable version of your Post Columns page of your gradebook will pop-up
    • Select Printer icon at the top of the Gradebook Sheet page.
  • If you planning on using the same comment field for most of the students in your class, you can quickly add the comment to all students by using Options -> Fill Down Values.  Then just change those students who need different comments.