Echo Glossary

General terms and definitions used in Echo.

Term Definition/Description
Activities Tool The Activities tool displays the Course Home pages for the selected course. Teachers can use this view to access what their students are seeing.
Activities Students complete Activities according to conditions set by the course author (e.g., attach a file to a dropbox, enter findings in a text box, etc.,). Course authors create Activities using a rich text editor.
Agenda The Agenda is used for letting students know what's coming up, helping them stay on-tasks, and providing them an additional resource for making up missed days. Agendas can be duplicated to other courses.
Activity Types From the Course Editor, course authors can add new activities, edit existing ones, and change non-gradable items to gradable items. They can choose from the following activity template types:
  • Folder
  • Project
  • Embed Code
  • File Attachment
  • Google Drive Document
  • Rich-Text Activity
  • Website Link
  • YouTube Video
  • Library
  • Assessment
  • Blog
  • Discussion
  • Journal
  • Peer Assessment
  • Practice Questions (formerly Homework)
  • RSS Feed
  • Task or Submission
  • Wiki
Assessment Assessment activities are question-based assignments that test student understanding. Students are required to complete assessments according to conditions set by the course author and submit all answers at once.
Announcements Announcements are messages that can be sent to all members of one or more courses as well as home pages of schools within your district. Announcements appear on the Home and Course Home pages above the To-do List and in the Communication tool.
Automatic Badges Automatic Badges are configured to be automatically awarded to students by Echo when they meet pre-specified criteria.
Badge Badges are awarded to recognize and encourage students. Echo allows for two types of badges: Automatic Badges and Teacher-assigned badges. Teachers can choose from Badges in specific categories (e.g., leadership, scholarship, service, etc) and, with Teacher-assigned Badges, they can provide personalized comments and/or evidence, so students know why they're being recognized.
Blog Course Blogs are assigned writing exercises that can be seen by the authoring student, the teacher, and all members of the course.
Calendar The Calendar displays due date notifications that are color-coded by course. Users can select a date or view to see activities listed on the left.
Choice Activities To provide students with greater control over their education, course authors can give them the opportunity to choose which activities they'd like to complete from a list of relevant activities. These are called "Choice Activities."
Clipboard Teachers can use the Clipboard to quickly provide personalized attention to individuals and groups of students. It is always available in the toolbar for ease of use, and teachers can assign activities, award badges, assign tasks, and message students quickly and easily based on their needs.
Comma-separated values (CSV) files CSV files are editable by spreadsheet applications like KSpread, OpenOffice Calc and Microsoft Excel. Echo reports are generated as CSV files. You must also use CSV or tab-delimited values text (.txt) files when importing course, user, and enrollments data into Echo.
Communication With the Communication tool, teachers can post announcements that appear above the To-do List and compose and send messages to members of their courses. Other Echo users can use the Communication tool to review announcements.
Community Tool The Community Tool allows schools to more easily exchange best practices, connect and share projects, and develop cross-school projects for students.
Continuous enrollment Continuous enrollment courses are self-paced courses for which completion is usually indicated by completion of certain activities rather than by the ending of a semester or other timeframe.

When you set up a continuous enrollment course, Echo automatically schedules suggested due dates for all gradable activities based on the sequence of activities in the Course Editor, the number of non-gradable activities between gradable activities, the weight of each activity, any blackout dates that have been specified, and the number of days and date range assigned to the course.
Course Cards Course Cards appear on the Home page and are made up of a course's assigned color and the course image (or the first two letters of the course name if no image is assigned). For students, Course Cards can display progress in the course and their current grade.
Course Chooser The Course Chooser is a dropdown menu next to the Main Menu that includes all courses a user has access to. Users can open it and jump to another course at any time.
Course Editor Course authors use the Course Editor to build activities and structure the course.
Course Home Course Home displays course announcements, the To-do List, the course activities, course links, and, for students, it displays current score and the Activity Stream.
Course Links Course Links are provided by course authors using the Course Editor. These links are significant to students' understanding and performance in a course, and students can access them by opening the Course Links dropdown in the toolbar on Course Home pages.
Custom Activity The Custom Activity template allows course authors to embed SCORM activities, display external websites, or create gradable activities using styles and scripts that aren't available with Echo authoring tools.
Derivative Course Echo allows courses to be created as linked copies of another course. The linked copy is known as the Derivative Course and the original course is the Master. Any changes made in the Master Course are reflected in the Derivative Child Course. If course authors make changes to a Derivative Course, the changed components are unlinked from the Master and won't be overridden by changes to the Master Course.
Digital Library Course authors can access content from various online resources from the Digital Library. These can include other courses within their district or school as well as open sources like and Kahn Academy.
Discussion Course Discussions are focused conversation threads. All course members can add to the thread.
Domain A domain is a collection of courses, users, and enrollments.
Enrollments An enrollment is a user's association with a course.
For Me The For Me tab displays all activities a student has created or chosen, as well as activities the teacher has created specifically for the student. Any activities assigned from the Clipboard are also graded here
Formative Assessment Formative Assessments evaluate ongoing student performance with relationship to specific objectives. If students perform well enough to demonstrate mastery of certain objectives, Echo allows them to skip activities meant to teach those objectives.
Grade Weights Teachers assign a number value to every gradable activity representing its weight in the grade book. This number defines how much impact each activity’s grade has on the final grade relative to other activities in the category and/or course; relativity is determined by comparing each assigned weight value.
Gradebook The Gradebook tool enables users to track student progress in many areas.
Gradebook Reports Teachers and admins can run Gradebook Reports. They are generated as spreadsheets that provide a high-level perspective on student performance as it relates to activities. They can be organized around individual activities or activity categories and time periods.
Gradebook Settings Content authors encounter this section when editing an activity and can complete the fields to specify due dates and scoring details.
Grading Schemes Grading schemes are criteria-based models for measuring performance. When creating a grading scheme, course authors define things like which activities are graded and which aren't, how much they are worth, how much their worth is weighted compared to other activities and activity types, what constitutes a passing grade, and in what way grades are communicated (e.g., letter grades, percentages, GPAs, etc.,).

Teachers and course authors create a default grading scheme when they build a course and they can create alternative class-wide grading schemes using the Final Grades screen.
Group prefix A Group prefix is the common identifier applied to all groups in a Group Set to show they're part of the same Group Set.
Group Set A teacher can group the same class in various ways; each different grouping is a Group Set.
Home Home is Echo's landing page and starting point for navigating the app. It displays current announcements for all courses, the To-do list for all courses, and Course Cards.
Journal Course Journals are assigned writing exercises that only the authoring student, the teacher, and the student's parent or other observer can access.
Links The Links tool lists resources that are important to the course.
LTI Keys Learning Tools Interoperability keys are used to sync Echo with external learning tools, like
Main Menu The Main Menu is on the far left of the toolbar. With it, users can navigate between Echo's tools.
Master Course Master Course allows you to manage multiple courses while working only in one. If a derivative course has been created, any changes made to the master will be inherited by the derivative.
Mastery Teachers can review the Mastery list in the Gradebook tool. There, each objective that is linked to one or more course activity is listed along with an indication of how well the class, as a whole, seems to be mastering it.
Mastery Reports Teachers and admins can run Mastery Reports. They are generated as spreadsheets that provide a high-level perspective on student performance in relationship to educational standards.
Metadata Content authors encounter this section when editing an activity and can complete the fields to provide additional information about the activity.
Objective Map An Objective Map is a group of defined correlations between two Objectives. This is helpful in showing how two Objectives from separate Objective Sets address the same or similar Standards.
Objective Mastery Students can access the Objective Master screen from the Gradebook tool. It displays course objectives, which activities they are aligned with, and the student's progress in mastering each objective (in percentages).
Objective mastery threshold The objective mastery threshold is the percentage of points a student has to earn on an objective-aligned activity to show mastery of that objective. If an objective is aligned with multiple activities, Echo uses the average.
Objective Set A grouped collection of related Objectives. Objective Sets are defined at the Domain level.
Objectives Course authors create Course Objectives by creating activities based on educational Standards and showing/describing how the activities meet those Standards.
Override Complete The Override Complete button is available when grading. If a teacher has designed an activity to require students to successfully complete it before they can continue to other activities, the teacher can use Override Complete to remove the requirement, allowing the student to move on.
PDF or HTML File The PDF or HTML File activity template allow course authors to create non-graded activities using styles and scripts that aren't available with Echo authoring tools.
Peer Help When activated, peer help allows students to see which of their classmates have completed an assignment, so they can engage them for help. Students access this information by clicking a Peer Help button in the toolbar of the Activities tool; the icon only appears when the feature is enabled by the admin and an activity has been completed by at least one student.
Project A Project is a variety of activities related to a single topic or assignment. On creation, course authors should provide a Project description and instructions, and can include Discussion, Blog, Wiki, and Journal activities.
Proxy A user with the appropriate permissions can sign into another user's Echo account; when doing this they are considered that user's proxy.
Question Set Question Set activities are question-based assignments that students complete in their own time. Students can complete and submit each or a group of questions to facilitate incremental progress and revision.
Quick Add The Quick Add activity template allows course authors to easily upload documents, YouTube videos, Google Drive documents, or links as activities using the Course Editor.
Quick Lists Teachers can generate Quick Lists using the Clipboard to assign supplemental activities to specific groups of students who need them.
Registration Code Students use Registration Codes to join courses. Teachers can generate Registration Codes and send them to students they want to invite to join a course.
Reports The Reports tool allows teachers to run Gradebook, Student, and Mastery Reports for their courses. These reports provide high-level perspectives on student performance and course effectiveness.
RSS Feed An RSS Feed activities compile and summarize content associated with a specific subject or website. Course authors build RSS Feeds by linking to existing RSS Feeds that students can access directly in Echo.
Rubric A scoring guide used to indicate activity expectations, possible performance outcomes, and the scores associated with them.
School Browser The School Browser allows any staff member to browse course agendas, course content, student grades, CRAs, IAKTS and more.
Self Assessment The Self Assessment feature allows students to evaluate their personal understanding, interest, and effort in a course and communicate the results easily to their teacher.
Self-assigned tasks When enabled, students can assign themselves tasks; they are called "self-assigned" in the For Me section of Gradebook. Creating and completing self-assigned tasks helps students manage their time and direct their own learning path.
Sidebar navigation Course authors build courses using a vertical folder structure. This structure appears as the sidebar navigation in in the Activities tool and on Course Home pages. In User Settings, users can choose to use a full-view version of it with expandable/collapsible folders or to use a simplified view that shows only the contents of the currently selected folder.
Standards Educational Standards describe what students should know and be able to do at a specific stage of their education. Within Echo, they are managed at the district or organizational level, and teachers use them to build activities and learning objectives.
Static Copy Unlike with Derivative Child and Sibling course copies, none of the changes made to the Master Course impact a Static Copy.
Student Choice Activities (i.e., Student Choice, Choice Activities) Student choice activities enable students to review a teacher-curated selection of approved activities and choose to complete the ones that best align with their interests and goals. Teachers are able to specify:
  • How many activities a student must complete.
  • The group of activities from which students can select activities.
  • Whether students can choose activities from other libraries.
  • Whether students can complete more than the required number of activities.
Student Reports Teachers and admins can run Student Reports. They are generated as spreadsheets that provide a high-level perspective on individual student performance.
Students The Students tool gives teachers at-a-glance access to various student data points in one simple table. They can use it to track student progress, create and manage groups, send mail, and invite, add, or drop students.
Survey Survey activities poll students to collect and analyze class data. Course authors build surveys using external tools and link them in Echo.
Tab-delimited values text files Tab-delimited values files are text files (.txt) formatted to store data in tables. When importing course, user, and enrollments data into Echo, you must tab-delimited or comma-separated values (CSV) files.
Tasks Tasks are personalized, non-graded activities that teachers can quickly assign to students using the Clipboard.
Teacher-assigned badges Teachers can award Badges to recognize and encourage students. Teachers choose from Badges in specific categories (e.g., leadership, scholarship, service, etc) and provide personalized comments, so students know why they're being recognized.
Theme A theme is made up of a color and/or image users choose to display in their Echo interface.
To-do List For students, the To-do List displays all past-due assignments, as well as all assignments with due dates coming up within seven days. For teachers, it displays student submissions in need of attention.
User Menu The User Menu is on the far right of the toolbar. With it, users can manage their account and themes, access help, and logout.
Visibility and Completion Content authors encounter this section when editing an activity and can complete the fields to specify when and where students can find the activity and how to complete it.
Wiki Course Wikis are collaborative writing exercises which can be edited by the teacher and all students in a course. All members can also see a history of revisions and who made them.
Have more questions? Submit a request


  • 0
    Logan Reichert

    How do you set up the What If calculator?


  • 0
    Stephanie Kolcun

    Good Day Logan

    The What If Calculator is only available if you are NOT using the MOS gradebook. However, if you are not the feature is found under Options from the Students Performance page.  It allows students to enter hypothetical grades on items to see how it will impact their course final grade.  This helps them to know where they would need to do better to get a higher grade for example. -Stephanie


  • 0
    Logan Reichert

    Thanks for the quick response! Is there a plan for the What If calculator to become available for use with the MOS gradebook? It would be an extremely beneficial function for our students to access.

  • 0
    Stephanie Kolcun

    If you would like to make a formal request for this feature, please feel free to open an Echo support ticket and this will help us track this request.  -Stephanie 

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