Atomic Jolt

Configure course journal settings

Inside of any writing activity, you can click the gear icon to access the course settings. While these settings are accessed from individual writing activities, the settings apply to all activities within the current course.

The available course settings are as follows:

Show or hide tool name

The Show Tool Name setting allows you to configure whether or not certain Atomic Journals UI elements are displayed in the writing activity header.

When turned on, the header of the writing prompt will include the Atomic Journals pen icon and the word “Journal”. When turned off, the header of the writing prompt will not include those elements.

Turning this setting off simplifies the UI a bit and makes it feel a little more generic.

This setting affects the views of both course authors and students.

Change journal entry visibility

The Journal entry visibility setting allows you to change who can view student journal entries.

There are 3 available options:

  1. Private - Only students can view their journal entries.

  2. Anonymous - Course authors and teachers can view student journal entries, but the entries are anonymized so that course authors and teachers don’t know which student wrote the entry.

  3. Teachers - Course authors and teachers can view journal entries and see which student wrote them.

The journal entry visibility setting cannot be modified once at least one student has created an entry for at least one writing activity; the entry visibility must be chosen before students start creating journal entries. The reason for this is because we want to ensure that, if a student creates a journal entry expecting that it will have a certain level of visibility, that visibility won’t change later and expose student entries in a way they weren’t expecting. For example, if the journal entry visibility is set to private and a student creates an entry, a course author should not be allowed to change the entry visibility to Teachers and thus be able to see that previously private journal entry.

The journal entry visibility selected for the course affects the availability of grading. If the journal entry visibility is set to Private or Anonymous, grading is not available for the course. Only an entry visibility setting of Teachers will allow for grading.

Grading settings

Grading can be enabled if the course visibility is set to Teachers.

Grading settings can be modified even if students have created journal entries. If you do modify grading settings after students have created entries though, it would probably be good to verify that the LMS gradebook gets updated in the way you expect.

There are 3 available grading types:

  1. Ungraded

  2. Pass/Fail

  3. Points

If grading is enabled, you can additionally specify whether a single gradebook entry should be created for the entire course or if an individual gradebook entry should be created for each writing activity.


Even if the journal entry visibility is set to Teachers, you can still, of course, choose to leave activities ungraded.


When the grading type is set to Pass/Fail, passing grades are automatically sent to the LMS gradebook once the student meets the participation requirements.

If the Pass/Fail grading type is chosen and the individual gradebook entries option is chosen, each activity will be given a passing grade if the student adds any text to it. If the single gradebook entry option is chosen, you need to specify the percentage of activities that the student must add text to in order to receive a passing grade.

Pass/fail grades are automatically updated when a student creates or updates a journal entry. If you change the grading settings for the course after students have created journal entries, those journal entries won’t be reflected in their grades until they modify the entry.

Students are given a passing grade once they meet the participation requirements. This grade will be sent to the gradebook as 100/100; if you want the grade to appear as "Pass/Fail" in the LMS gradebook, you can configure that through your LMS assignment user interface. Failing grades are not sent to the gradebook; until a student meets the participation requirements, they won’t have a grade for the assignment.


When the Points grading type is selected, teachers manually assign a point score for students’ writing activities.

Course authors specify the maximum number of points for gradebook entries. If the single gradebook entry option is chosen, max points applies to the single course gradebook entry. If the individual gradebook entries option is chosen, max points applies to each of the individual gradebook entries.

When the grading type is set to points, teachers can include comments along with the point score. These comments will be displayed in the gradebook along with the score.

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