Why is the dropdown grade option missing in gradebook?

If you are using Moodle Assignment and Moodle gradebook to provide student feedback etc, there may be occasions where a grade drop down option becomes unavailable for a particular group of students etc and some assignment column cells appear brown.

This is because grades have been overridden and the cell frozen  after a user clicks Update at the bottom of the gradebook page after making entries.

The fix: 

  • Log into Moodle
  • Go to your course
  • Scroll to course admin settings > click Grades
  • If using groups – select group to view
  • If a number of the cells under the various assignment columns are brown > click Turn editing on (while still in gradebook)
  • Click on the little editing hand and pen icon next to a student’s brown grade cell -(can only do one student at a time)
  • Edit grade page  appears > uncheck Overridden box – scroll down and click Save changes


  1. If an assignment is linked to may users or groups it will take awhile for the page to update and will most likely time out – this is not a problem as the setting will be saved.
  2. Do NOT use the browser back button but open the course in a new window (paste the course URL into the new window) – go to grades and repeat the fix steps above for each instance

When completed fix steps stay in gradebook view

  • Do NOT click on Update at bottom of the page (if do then override and block it all again)
  • Turn editing off
  • Click on an assignment and enter grades as usual from the drop down menu

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