Get Organized with SmartMusic Units

As many of you know, creating an assignment in SmartMusic involves a few simple steps. Once you’ve selected a piece of music, and clicked on the Assignment button within that piece, you specify details (like a minimum tempo or how many points the assignment is worth), offer some instructions, set a due date, and indicate which class (or individual students) you’re sending it to.

(If you’re not familiar with sending assignments, this process is described in more detail here.)

While the steps involved are fairly straightforward, once you’ve sent your class a few similar assignments you may wish that you could send them out in batches. For example, you might like to assign a term’s worth of method book assignments in one action, or simultaneously assign a new concert band piece along with some associated scales and technical exercises.

You can with SmartMusic units. Units let you create combinations of any kind of repertoire assignments, from band and orchestra titles, solos, method books, exercises, and more, as one. Because all the assignments in a unit share a set of instructions and a due date, you’re spared the busy work of entering instructions and due dates for each individual assignment. You can also choose to send assignments within a unit individually as well.

But that’s enough talk. Let’s create a unit based on Holst’s Suite in Eb.

After you’ve logged in to SmartMusic, select a piece of repertoire you’d like to assign. For example, under Find Music select Exercises, then Scales, then double-click on one of the scale examples listed and choose Eb concert. Then, within this scale, click on the “Assignment” button to arrive here:

This is where you select the required settings, just as you would with any assignment: Performance settings such as tempo, click, count off, etc, cannot be edited after being placed in a unit. However, it is not necessary to type in instructions or set the point values for the assessment or recording at this time, as those can be changed. When complete,  click on “Add to unit,” highlighted in red above. The Add Assignment window opens:

Here you’ll create the name of the unit (remember a unit is just a group of assignments). Make the name as descriptive as needed. In the example above, the unit is named after the music title. Once you’ve typed your unit name click “Create.”

Then click “Add” to add the assignment to the unit, and you’ll receive a confirmation.

To add more assignments to the unit, repeat the steps above. When the Add Assignment window opens, select the unit in the list and press “Add.” In the following example, I have added more assignments to this unit:

To access units you have created, go to your Home page and select any class. Click Assignment Library located on the lower right of the page (circled in red below).

Now you know how to create, populate, and locate a unit. Units are a great way to organize and group assignments. Next time we’ll look into scheduling a unit or individual assignments from within a unit.

If you have any questions or suggestions in the meantime, please let me know by clicking on “Comments” below.

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