Frequently Asked Questions
If your question is not answered below then please get in contact with us and we will happily answer and queries you may have.
How does eSubs help students keep on top of deadlines?
Students have a view of all their current assignments sorted in date order. This view also shows how they have done so far if their first hand-in has already been marked.
Also, when setting assignments, teachers see all the deadlines for all the subjects a group is studying. If deadlines for other assignments are close to the proposed deadline for a new assignment, these are highlighted in pink (same week) or red (same day).
How does eSubs help teachers?
eSubs makes it very easy for staff to set assignments and once this has been done, it is up to students to hand them in, no need for teachers to be involved in this.
Work is either handed in or not, there won’t be any more “but I gave it to you” discussions.
Work is copied to the teacher’s laptop, encrypted USB memory or other device so that they can take it home for marking and IV. Simple filtering by subject, assignment, student and/or status (all on one screen) makes marking and IV very efficient.
Once marked, feedback is written into eSubs against assignments and criteria and that’s it (no transcribing results into other forms, spreadsheets or other systems). When back at work, just press one button and everything is updated on the central system.
eSubs generates emails to let staff know when something has been IVed and to remind them what tasks are coming up each week.
How does eSubs help tutors and those giving additional support?
eSubs Student can be used by support staff to see the same views as the students they are supporting. This means they can see actual work handed in, all the deadlines for active assignments, feedback and achievement for these students.
What happens if a student misses a deadline?
When setting up your classes, you can decide whether to allow one or two (formative / final) deadlines and whether to allow a grace period between the deadline and submission being closed.
If there is no grace period, or the grace period has expired, teachers can easily grant individual students an extra hand-in with a new agreed deadline. Depending on your setup, this may need approval from the lead internal verifier.
If submitting work for an extra hand-in or submitting during the grace period, students are required to enter a reason which is stored in the database and can be printed in reports.
What software does eSubs use?
eSubs is written using C#. eSubs Student is now web based. Until our cloud based solution becomes available later in 2017, eSubs Teacher and eSubs Manager will require “.Net Runtime 4.52” (available free from Microsoft). The main database requires SQL Server version 2008 or later.
What types of course will eSubs work with?
eSubs will work for most academic courses. It can be used to track submission of assignments that are not related to specific qualifications, but its real power is in the tracking of criteria based qualifications.
Teachers can record student progress against criteria even when students are being observed and aren’t submitting evidence electronically.
Why do you say eSubs can generate huge savings on printing?
Where eSubs is introduced, students stop printing nearly all their work.
Say your average student currently prints 50 pages per week for 30 weeks at 3p per page and this stops once eSubs is introduced. That’s a saving of £45 per student per year.
On top of this, there is no need for you to print cover sheets to record marking decisions, internal verification sheets or keep photocopied version of student assignments (formative or final).
Why do you say eSubs will save huge amounts of time?
eSubs provides everything staff need to mark and IV from one screen. Simple filtering means staff can quickly filter what assignments and student work is displayed by selecting one or more student groups, assignments, students or statuses. As eSubs Teacher is Windows based, this happens in an instant.
Once staff have filtered the work displayed, a simple double click opens student work (no download from the internet required). They can add comments to student work if required then save and close (no upload to the internet required).
In eSubs itself, they can then award criteria associated with the assignment and explain their reasoning, again without changing screen or any upload.
eSubs also provides many useful shortcuts, such as the ability to update feedback and achievement for all students in a group at once, open the previous version of a student’s work or open the unit specification.
All of these features together help reduce the marking and IV burden on staff.
Why isn’t there an actual grade and why can’t you be sure of the accuracy of target grades?
While we make every effort to calculate target grades accurately, there are some grading calculations that are not fully documented in some qualification specifications. This is most apparent where students are doing more units than necessary, with a mixture of credits from various a mixture of levels
In addition, eSubs does not check to see that students haven’t been studying a prohibited combination of units. A member of staff may set up a course with prohibited combinations or with some other incorrect information that invalidates the calculations that eSubs performs.
It is also possible that criteria may have been incorrectly judged. Until examination boards have confirmed results, they might upgrade or downgrade a student’s results.
Will eSubs improve grades?
Anecdotal evidence says YES, though we can’t guarantee it. We can say that:
- Students have a clear view of all assignments for all subjects on one screen, helping them to plan their workload.
- Grades and feedback are clearly shown after first hand-in. These are always available and cannot be lost, so students can address any problems before a second hand-in.
- The graphic view of results across all units and ability to use predictions and target grades encourages students to maximise their performance.