Assignments in SmartMusic 2011 – Part 2 – Creating Assignments

For our second look at the improvements in SmartMusic’s gradebook feature, we’ll create and schedule an assignment. If you’ve finished setting up your classes and have students chomping at the bit (that is, they’ve enrolled before you’ve had a chance to create their homework!), you’re probably eager to get started.

Step 1
Log in – doing so causes the “Assignment” option to appear in every piece of music.

Step 2
Open the piece you want to schedule. If you’ve already downloaded this piece, it’s in the My Library section on the left navigation bar. If not, browse through our repertoire in Find Music.

For my example, I’ll make an assignment from Music for the Royal Fireworks:

Step 3
Click Assignment in the upper right, which I’ve circled above. This produces the following:

Here you can select from several assignments (unique for each individual instrument) pre-created by experienced music educators, or create your own. You can also modify the assignment details, name your assignment, write specific instructions, and assign points. The window is compact and you can still see the notation and scroll around (unlike previous versions!).

Using the wonderful premade assignments is really slick and easy. Today, however, we’ll take things a step further and show you how to create a customized assignment. To do so, indicate “Custom” next to “Create an assignment.”

Step 5
Under Assignment details you can specify what you will require with your assignment. I’m requiring that Tempo, Click Track, the Cursor, and the Music on Screen are all set to on, and that My Part is set to off.

The settings shown above are displaying the changes I’ve made to this piece. For example, I lowered the tempo to 52 bpm, using the Tempo slider near the top. The tempo that displays under assignment details reflects this change, but is not editable itself.

Hint: If you click More Settings you’ll find other customization options to require or not require. The settings that appear here change based on what kind of music you’ve opened.

Step 6
Schedule it! On the right are the same options you had in the past. You can pre-create assignments and have them automatically distributed to students in the future, send them an email notification when it is scheduled, and send an email reminder, too. When you click Schedule, you can specify which class(es) will get the assignment. You can also choose whether or not each student gets the assignment, and if students who enroll later on this year will see them (provided the due date has not already passed).

Students will now see this assignment on their list when they log in to SmartMusic.

The process is really fast – it’s not nearly as long as my writing makes it seem. Create a few and I think you’ll agree.

Let us know by clicking on “Comments” below. I’d especially enjoy hearing what you’d like to see in future SmartMusic blog posts.

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