General Information on Mastery Settings

What are Mastery Settings?

With standards-based grading, there are different ways to calculate the mastery of a standard. Traditional points grading is based on point values and percentages; standards grading is based on levels rather than points. The five ways to calculate the overall performance levels are:

  • Mean - overall standard performance will be determined based on the average level they perform at.
  • Mode - overall standard performance will be determined based on the level they perform at the most.
  • Most Recent - overall performance level will be determined based on the level they achieved most recently.
  • Highest - overall performance will be determined based on the highest level they've achieved.
  • Decaying Average - overall performance will be determined using a calculation that is based on an average with more weight given to the more recent scores.


Where are Mastery Settings used?

  • Filtering the Gradebook: Particularly in the standards gradebook, the mastery settings are located in a filter. You can toggle between the different mastery settings using this filter.

  • Standards Analytics: When running reports in Standards Analytics, you can filter your search by mastery settings.

  • Report Cards: When running report cards, particularly standards-based report cards, you'll have to select the grading scale to use to run the reports.

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Determining Use of Mastery Settings


The district can choose which mastery settings are available to each grade level, as well as which mastery setting to use as the default.

Mastery Settings are controlled from the Control Center of the main admin account. Click on the Mastery Settings tab of the Grading section of the Control Center.

Mastery Settings by Grade Level:

  • Step 1: Select the pencil icon next to the text under the Visible to column.
  • Step 2: Select the X next to a grade level to remove that mastery setting from that particular grade level.
  • Step 3: Select the expand arrow to re-select a grade level.

Default Mastery Setting:

Select the default mastery setting for your district by choosing It under the Default Setting column.

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Mastery Settings FAQ

  • Can there be different default settings for different grade levels? Currently, there can only be one default for the district.
  • What happens if the district default settings is turned off for certain grade levels? For example: District default setting is Mean, but Mean is turned off for 8th grade... The default setting for 8th grade will be Most Recent. If Most Recent is also turned off, it would then be Mode, followed by Highest, then Decaying Average.
  • Are mastery settings available in student and parent accounts? Yes - parents and students can filter between any available mastery settings in the gradebook.
  • Is it better to have all Mastery Settings turned on, or to limit them to one or two? That is truly dependent on district preference, but here's some advice from our Otus Tech Coaches: during onboarding (when you first begin using Otus), it may be beneficial to have more than one setting on, so teachers can experiment with student data using the different settings. If it seems to be more confusing than helpful in the long run, limiting the mastery settings to one or two might be best for your district.

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Video Tutorial

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Next Steps

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