# Blackboard - Most Common Grade Center Problem

Below is a resolution to a common problem instructor's encounter in the Blackboard Grade Center.

The most common problem instructorâ€™s encounter is that the Total column doesn't show the expected number of points possible, which can affect percentages and letter grades. To see the total number of points possible for any column in the Grade Center, hover over the column heading and the points possible will display above it. This is a quick and easy way to check this important setting.

## Reasons why the Blackboard grade Total column may be off:

### Hidden Columns:

The Total number of points may include points from a grade column that is hidden from view. When you hide a grade column as shown below, the points still count towards the total grade AND the students will still see it, but you won't.

To check for hidden columns, put your cursor over the

**Manage**button and select**Column Organization**.- Look for grayed-out columns that have points assigned to them.
- Un-hide those columns and delete them if not needed.

(Note: If the column is a Blackboard assignment that is deployed, you have to delete the assignment to delete the column in the Grade Center.)

**Total**, the number of points don't make sense for the students.

### Running Total:

During the semester, setting the

**Total**column as a**Running Total**works well because empty grade cells are not treated as zeroes, i.e. students are not penalized for future assignments. But at the end of the semester, empty grade cells are usually considered zeroes. For final grades, edit the**Total**column settings to not be a running total. This saves you the time of entering zero into all the empty grade cells.### Extra Credit:

Extra credit assignments should be set to zero Points Possible. Then the Total column's possible points won't be affected, but any extra credit points awarded will increase the student's total points.

**Edit Column**to change the**Points Possible**to zero.