Skip to content | Change text size

Home


Support & Training

Need help with:

Student Academic Integrity
Student Academic Integrity Module
Moodle/Turnitin Known Issues
Development Requests
Moodle Change Schedule
Moodle Symposium Archive
VLE News Archive


Contact Service Desk

 

Scenarios for groups and groupings

Print version

There are various ways that you can use groups and groupings to manage students and how they interact with the content in your unit. Following are different scenarios that provide details of how you can set these up for your purposes.


Send news announcements to ALL students

Scenario: Lee wants to use Moodle to send important announcements to students throughout the unit. She anticipates that all her announcements will apply to all of the students.

Solution: No need to set up groups or groupings or change News forum settings.

Group settings
There is no need to change the group settings for this scenario.

News forum settings
The news forum is by default set to make all new posts available to all students and teaching staff. All students and staff in the unit will by default receive an email notification of new posts. No further set up is needed.
(See Using the news forum)

Create news announcements specific to ONE group of students

Scenario: Kim wants the other lecturers and tutors in her unit to send news announcements to particular groups of students as well as to the entire cohort. She also wants her students to be able to sort the news forum to show posts organised into the different groups of which they are members.

Solution: No need to set up groups or groupings, but need to enable Separate groups in News forum settings.

Group settings
For a standard teaching unit, you will have groups automatically imported from Callista. No further setup is needed.

News forum settings

  1. In the Common module settings, click the Show advanced button on the right.
  2. At Group mode, select Separate groups from the drop down menu.

Hold different discussions for each tutorial group

Scenario: Tom wants students and tutors to participate in an online discussion within their different tutorial groups. Tom is using Allocate+ groups, and he's happy to base the tutorial groups around these.

Solution: No need to set up groups but need to create a grouping for the tutorial groups. Need to set group and grouping mode in the Forum settings.

Group settings
For a standard teaching unit, you will have tutorial groups automatically imported from Allocate+. No further setup is needed.

Groupings settings

  1. In the Groupings tab, click on the Create grouping button.group icon
  2. Enter ‘Tutorial groups' into the Grouping name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groupings screen, click on the Show groups in groupings group icon
  4. Select the appropriate Allocate+ groups from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

Forum settings

  1. In the Common module settings, click the Show advanced button on the right.
  2. At Group mode, select Separate groups or Visible groups from the drop down menu.

    - If you select Separate groups in the forum settings, students will only be able to create, view and reply to posts made within the Allocate+ group of which they are a member.
    - If you select Visible groups in the forum settings, students will only be able to create and reply to posts made within the Allocate+ group of which they are a member, but will also be able to view posts made in other groups.
  3. At Grouping, select the ‘Tutorial groups' from the drop down menu.
  4. At Available for group members only, tick the box.

Note:
Lecturers and tutors will have the ability to post to ‘All participants' within a forum. However, students will not be able to reply to these posts (because they do not have the ability to reply to people outside of their group).
To create a post that students can reply to in their own groups, lecturers and tutors will need to create a separate post to each group in the forum.

Create a discussion forum for one group of students only

Scenario: Lee coordinates a unit with both on and off campus students. She wants to create a discussion forum that is only for the off campus students to use. However, she does not want to divide the off campus students into smaller discussion groups.

Solution: No need to set up groups but need to create grouping for off campus students. Need to set grouping mode in Forum settings.

Group settings
For a standard teaching unit, you will have cohort groups automatically imported from Callista. No further setup is needed.

Groupings settings

  1. In the Groupings tab, click on the Create grouping button.
  2. Enter ‘Off campus' into the Grouping name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groupings screen, click on the Show groups in groupings group icon
  4. Select the appropriate Callista groups from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

Forum settings

  1. In the Common module settings, click the Show advanced button on the right.
  2. At Group mode, leave the setting at 'No groups' in the drop down menu.
  3. At Grouping, select the ‘Off campus' from the drop down menu.
  4. At Available for group members only, tick the box.

Note:

  • If you would like Tutors to participate in the forum, you will need to add them to a group and then add the group to the ‘Off campus' grouping.
  • Lecturers will be able to participate without changing any further settings.

Make a file available to only one group of students

Scenario: Alex coordinates a unit with student cohorts both on and off campus. She has a PDF file with information specific to the distance education cohort that she doesn't want to show to the on campus cohort.

Solution: No need to set up groups but need to create grouping for off campus cohort. Need to set grouping mode in File settings.

Group settings
For a standard teaching unit, you will have cohort groups automatically imported from Callista. No further setup is needed.

Groupings settings

  1. In the Groupings tab, click on the Create grouping button.
  2. Enter ‘Distance Education' into the Grouping name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groupings screen, click on the Show groups in groupings group icon
  4. Select the appropriate Callista group from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

File settings

  1. In the Common module settings, click the Show advanced button on the right.
  2. At Available for group members only, tick the box.
  3. At Grouping, select ‘Distance Education' from the drop down menu.

Note:

  • Lecturers and Tutors will see the text ‘(Distance Education)' after the link to the file.
  • Students will only see the file if they are in a Callista group that is added to the ‘Distance Education' grouping.

Make a file available to only teaching staff

Scenario: Sam coordinates a unit with lab activities run by tutors. He wants tutors to have access to the lab activity solutions. He has used the hide function to achieve this in the past, but one of the lecturers on this unit accidentally displayed the file to students. Sam wants to ensure that these lab activities are not accidentally made available to students.

Solution: Need to create group and grouping for teaching staff. Need to set grouping mode in File settings.

Group settings

  1. In the Groups tab, click on the Create group button.
  2. Enter ‘Teaching staff' into the Group name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groups screen, select the ‘Teaching staff' group, then click the Add/remove users button.
  4. Select the appropriate users from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

Groupings settings

  1. In the Groupings tab, click on the Create grouping button.
  2. Enter ‘Teaching staff' into the Grouping name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groupings screen, click on the Show groups in groupings group icon
  4. Select the ‘Teaching staff' group from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

File settings

  1. In the Common module settings, click the Show advanced button on the right.
  2. At Available for group members only, tick the box.
  3. At Grouping, select ‘Teaching staff' from the drop down menu.

Note:

  • Lecturers and Tutors will see the text ‘(Teaching staff)' after the link to the file.
  • Students will not see the file because they are not in the group that is added to the ‘Teaching staff' grouping.

Extend the due date of a quiz for a group of students

Scenario: Lee has a number of students who experienced a power blackout in the evening before an assessable quiz was due. She wants to give only these students an extended period for completing the quiz.

Solution: Need to create a group for students you want to provide an extension for. Need to add a group override setting using Quiz administration.

Group settings

  1. In the Groups tab, click on the Create group button.
  2. Enter ‘Quiz extension' into the Group name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groups screen, select the ‘Quiz extension' group, then click the Add/remove users button.
  4. Select the appropriate students from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

Quiz settings

  1. Within the quiz, find Quiz administration in the Settings block and select Group overrides.
  2. Click on the Add group override button.
  3. At Override group, select ‘Quiz extension' from the drop down menu.
  4. Adjust the other settings as appropriate, then Save.

Note:
Only students added to the ‘Quiz extension' group will be affected by the adjusted settings.

Ask students to choose their own group

Scenario: Kim is using small activity groups of students in her tutorial sessions. She wants each group to have five students, and is happy for students to choose which group they would like to join. She would like to use these small groups to set up a glossary activity exclusively for their use.

Solution: Need to create groups for the students and a grouping for the specific activity. Need to set up a Group selection activity to enable students to choose their own group within the grouping set for the activity.

Group settings

  1. In the Groups tab, click on the Create group button.
  2. Enter ‘Activity group 1' into the Group name field, then Save changes.
  3. Repeat creating groups for as many groups as you require.
  4. Do not add members to the groups from the group settings.


Alternatively, you could use the Auto-create groups function (see Create a large number of small activity groups)  and at Allocate members, select No allocation.

Groupings settings

  1. In the Groupings tab, click on the Create grouping button.
  2. Enter ‘Activity groups' into the Grouping name field, then Save changes.
  3. In the Groupings screen, click on the Show groups in groupings group icon
  4. Select all the ‘Activity group x' groups from the Potential members list, then click the Add button.

Group selection activity settings

  1. Use the Add an activity ... drop down menu and select Group selection.
  2. At Name, enter ‘Choose your activity group'.
  3. At Introduction, enter ‘Click the enrol link next to the group you would like to join.'
  4. At Allow selection from, select the Grouping ‘Activity groups' from the drop down menu.
  5. At Default max members per group, enter the maximum number of group members you would like per group.
  6. Adjust the other settings as appropriate, then Save.

Note:
Lecturers will be able to use the Grouping ‘Activity groups' when adjusting the settings on other resources and activities within the Moodle unit. Lecturers will be able to view the list of groups and the enrolled members from the Group selection activity or from Groups in the settings block. Students will be able to enrol and unenrol themselves from the available groups while the Group selection activity is available to them.

Create a large number of small activity groups

Scenario: Jo wants to quickly create 40 lab groups and allocate her students randomly into these groups. She will use these groups to set up a forum activity.

Solution: Need to create groups automatically.

Group settings

  1. In the Groups tab, click on the Auto-create groups button.
  2. Click the Show advanced button on the right.
  3. At Select members from role, select 'Student'.
  4. At Specify, select 'Number of groups' from the drop down menu.
  5. At Group/member count, enter the number of groups you would like to be created.
  6. At Allocate members, select the most appropriate option from the drop down menu. To create ‘shell groups' which can then be used with the Group selection activity, select No allocation.
  7. At Naming scheme, enter the naming convention you would like for the new groups. Check details by clicking the question mark or help icon (help icon) beside the field.
  8. Adjust the other settings as appropriate, then Save.

Note:
Lecturers will be able to use the created groups when adjusting the settings on other resources and activities within the Moodle unit, and to sort other features such as the gradebook.


Related Information