As ambitious as we are as students, we’re not always guaranteed good grades or perfect scores despite long nights and exam crams. With nothing more than a few syllabi and red ink, keeping track of your grades and measuring your performance with a calculator is outdated and unnecessary. Weighted grades and a failed exam can turn a trip to the calculator into a worrisome mess of numbers and unmet expectations. In your pocket, however, you already have all the tools necessary for instant grade-ification. Grades 2 is your personal performance record that crunches all of the numbers so you don’t have to, providing near instant feedback on what you need to aim for to maintain your target grade (preferably an A). Jeremy Olson is at it again, refining the user experience from Grades and delivering a free update that adds a GPA calculator and due dates to keep you on schedule.
Retina improved and subtly tweaked in all the right ways, Grades 2 is quite literally a student success project. Not only has it be carefully crafted by a fellow classmate, it’s an essential grading tool that’s available for any student to download for free. You have no excuses not to plug in your syllabus for the remainder of the Spring semester (and in preparation for that quick Summer session), and with finals on the way you might want to double check your grading ups and downs. Grades 2 will tell you just what you need to make to maintain your desired grade for the course, and works in conjunction with your syllabus so you only need to tap and enter a quick number for instant results.
Grades 2 works on the idea that you pre-populate your assignments for the semester from a syllabus, and you simply enter the grades as they’re received. Going into a class, you know labs count 40% of your grade, assignments count 10%, and that your finals may constitute a whopping 50%. Tell grades that you’re going to add a few labs, 12 assignments, 3 tests, then a final, and your grading list is set for number matrimony for the remainder of the semester. As your work is returned to you stamped with that all important grade letter, a quick trip into Grades 2 will tell you what you need to make on your next assignment or test to keep your grade satisfactory.
A new addition gives students the ability to assign due dates to all of the items in their syllabus so that you can always stay on top of what’s due next. Grades will filter your due dates into the current and next weeks, keeping you on target and preventing the feeling of being overwhelmed with a semester’s worth of work ahead of you.
Grades 2 is incredibly forgiving in helping you calculate your grade. Every grade you get could be different, and it doesn’t matter whether you get a 7/9 or a 50.5 out of 100 on an assignment. Grades 2 will crack the fractions, and it also offers you the opportunity to enter a subgrade for assignments that consist of multiple parts. For example, a final might be broken down into a hands-on demonstration and a written exam. If you attend a college that offers students bonus points (perhaps more useful for high-school students), Grades 2 will take your over-achieving grade into consideration as well.
At the end of the semester when finals have been returned, you have in your toolkit a GPA calculator to figure out if you’ve made the Dean’s or President’s List. You can adjust the number of credits possible for that course along with assigning a grade to your particular class. If you’ve made an A, you’re guaranteed an easy 4.0 points towards your GPA. The calculator even goes so far as to average your GPA with your previous semester’s for an accurate representation of where you stand.
Grades 2 wouldn’t be an improvement on the original if there weren’t lots of cool little tidbits and jokesters to look out for. I won’t spoil anything, but Grades 2 presents students with a couple new helpful characters that’ll help you along the way. Grades 2 also gives you the option to import data from the original grades, and kill advertisements for only a dollar. It’s almost ridiculous how inexpensive it is for the convenience of quick grading – Grades 2 is an absolute steal for how helpful it is to students.
With improved Retina graphics, the same Grades friendly interface, and extra additions that round out the ideal grading experience, Grades 2 is the must download pocket companion for staying on track and earning the perfect grade. Grades 2 is available on the App Store for free, and I encourage all of our college readers to give this a download and plug in your syllabus.
• You should follow the author on Twitter here.