It can be difficult, at times, to keep track of all of your instructional data, especially with so many subjects during our day. Especially if your school district, or school, doesn’t have a data system. Google Sheets is a great tool to keep track of student data for ongoing formative assessments, as well as diagnostic assessments. Having your assessment data accessible also makes it easy to use data to drive classroom instruction, or intervention. Once you have your data spreadsheet set up, it’s easy to adjust for different needs. And, you can reuse the same set up year after year. There are so many ways to customize your student data tracker spreadsheets to fit your needs, and make it work for you! I talk about a few different set ups I’ve used, and/or continue to use, throughout this post. Here’s a look at some easy ways you can track student data with Google Sheets.
Why track student data in Google Sheets?
Tracking student data in Google Sheets has many practical benefits!
- Accessibility- Since it’s cloud based, you can access it anywhere! I hate lugging my school computer home, so I rarely do. But, if I’m grading at home, I can still access my student data spreadsheets from home!
- Collaboration- Since more than one person can access Google Sheets at once, it’s the perfect program for managing student data for more than one classroom. Tracking RtI or intervention data or grade level performance on a school or district assessment are both done easily within Google Sheets. Or, it just makes it possible for you to share your data with your administration team, principal, or instructional coach.
- Autocalculations- My favorite reason for using Google Sheets or Excel for my data is the built in formulas! I use it to figure out student percentages from raw scores, I use it to generate a list of students based on proficiency, and I use it to color code based on student proficiency. I always build in averages into the spreadsheet so that I can monitor my overall student performance.
- Visualization- If you are a visual learner, it’s super fast and quick to add graphs and charts to reflect your data. While that’s not frequently how I like to view it, it’s super simple to add in.
- Versatile- From just checklists for attendance, weekly assessments, formative assessments, and more, you can use Google Sheets (or Excel!) to manage virtually anything you want to track in the classroom!
I used to use Excel to track my data, back in the olden days. Over the years, I’ve shifted to Sheets. I don’t think there’s a single feature I miss in my switch, especially since I don’t utilize the full functions of Sheets or spreadsheets in general.
How do I create student data trackers in Google Sheets?
The first iterations of my data tracking were literally just places to store scores. Over the years, as I’ve learned more about options available in Excel and now Google Sheets, I’ve been better able to customize them to meet my needs. Whether you’re looking to create one spreadsheet you can use to track data in a subject area, or a powerhouse of sheets to hold everything you need, you can build the spreadsheet that meets your needs.
I could list a series of steps to follow to build your student data tracker. But, chances are, if seeing the steps was enough for you, you would have already made your own! So, I think videos are the most helpful. Many people have anxiety around spreadsheet software but I love using them! I’ve spent significant amounts of time learning new things when I want the spreadsheet to do something I don’t yet know how to do! I’m not a pro by any means but I’ve learned a few tricks or two along the years.
This video walks through setting up a pretty basic, academic, standards-based student data tracker. I teach you how to build in formulas to copy information from other cells (so you don’t need to duplicate names), auto-calculating percentages, how to set up conditional formatting to color code based on student mastery, identifying the number of proficient students, and how to build in averages.
Free Student Data Tracker Template
In the video above I walk through how to set up this student data tracker and give suggestions for ways you can modify it to better meet your needs. If you’d rather not build it from scratch, I have a free standards tracking spreadsheet template you can download. The template is exactly what’s shown in the video, and it’s ready for you to continue to customize to meet your needs!
More In-Depth Student Data Tracking
In this Part 2 video, I take that same student data tracker and build individual student reporting pages. These allow you to see how each individual student is performing, standard-by-standard or skill by skill. It’s all set up with formulas so once it’s set up for one student, it’s pretty quick and simple to create it for the rest of the students in your class! In this video, I talk through formulas for copying cells over to be displayed, adding graps, and conditional formatting.
If you’re looking to create a similar sheet to track your math data, I’ve got you covered!
Student Math Data Tracking Sheets
I think it’s very important to track student data standard by standard in math. It allows you to see who is in need of reteaching or extra support. So many skills build off of a previously learned skill in math. It makes it easy to spiral standards, but also means it’s critical students master them so they’re ready for the next layer. I have standards based math data tracking sheets prepped and ready for you. They’re currently available for grades 1-4. They are prebuilt with the Common Core Math Standards, but are editable so you can change them to match the standards for your state. Or, add in additional skills you’d like to track.
My favorite part of these math data trackers are the student information sheets. These student data pages are auto-generated! They’re literally no extra work for you! They prepopulate based on the assessment scores you enter into the data spreadsheet. They display the student scores by standard, organized by domain. This makes them perfect reporting pages for parents, or to take with you to a data meeting like RtI, MTSS, or IEP case conferences.
I have math data trackers available for 1st grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th grade. They are ready to be used, and are customizable to match your state standards, or district’s assessments. Each is tailored to your specific grade level and includes a video tutorial that walks you through how to use them. You can get yours sent to your inbox (for free) at Math Data Tracking Spreadsheets.
Phonics Tracking Sheets
Another pre-made student data tracker template I have available is my phonics tracking spreadsheets. This spreadsheet is built using the Quick Phonics Screener but is entirely editable to match whatever assessment you use. Tracking phonics data skill by skill is a great way to ensure students are making progress with their foundational reading skills. I’ve included the video tutorial below, but head to my Free Phonics Data Tracker Spreadsheet page to grab the tracker and read more about it.
You can use Google Sheets to create even more in-depth student data trackers! Do you use Google Sheets in other ways? I’d love to hear it in the comments below.