Moodle
  1. Moodle
  2. MDL-17929

Auto-Create Groups: Populate groups from Child Courses in META courses

    Details

    • Type: Improvement Improvement
    • Status: Open
    • Priority: Minor Minor
    • Resolution: Unresolved
    • Affects Version/s: 1.9.3, 2.0.8, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3.2, 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7
    • Fix Version/s: DEV backlog
    • Component/s: Groups
    • Labels:
      None
    • Environment:
      group/autogroup.php?
    • Affected Branches:
      MOODLE_19_STABLE, MOODLE_20_STABLE, MOODLE_21_STABLE, MOODLE_22_STABLE, MOODLE_23_STABLE, MOODLE_24_STABLE, MOODLE_25_STABLE, MOODLE_26_STABLE, MOODLE_27_STABLE
    • Rank:
      4941

      Description

      It doesn't appear that one can auto-create Groups from the child courses in META courses. On the auto-create page in Groups, (group/autogroup.php?) it would be an excellent improvement if users could select to "create groups from Child Courses" so that groups could automatically be created if there are several child courses in a meta course.

        Issue Links

          Activity

          Hide
          Dan Leighton added a comment -

          Definitely!

          This would save me many hours of administration. Please implement it as soon as you can.

          Show
          Dan Leighton added a comment - Definitely! This would save me many hours of administration. Please implement it as soon as you can.
          Hide
          David Smith added a comment -

          I agree, this is a modification we would find very, very useful.

          Show
          David Smith added a comment - I agree, this is a modification we would find very, very useful.
          Hide
          Thomas Robb added a comment -

          I see that this feature was recommended for 1.9.3, makes sense but still hasn't been implemented. Can it be implemented in 2.1? It would certainly save me, as well, considerable time when setting up child courses which require the same groups as the parent course.

          Show
          Thomas Robb added a comment - I see that this feature was recommended for 1.9.3, makes sense but still hasn't been implemented. Can it be implemented in 2.1? It would certainly save me, as well, considerable time when setting up child courses which require the same groups as the parent course.
          Hide
          Joe Murphy added a comment -

          This remains something which would be very useful. Our use case is that this is a frequent request when we have multiple faculty members using a single metacourse. (For example, 4 sections of the same Chemistry course.) Groups make the gradebook, quiz, and assignment modules much easier to navigate for the faculty members, but it takes significant human time to maintain the groups.

          Show
          Joe Murphy added a comment - This remains something which would be very useful. Our use case is that this is a frequent request when we have multiple faculty members using a single metacourse. (For example, 4 sections of the same Chemistry course.) Groups make the gradebook, quiz, and assignment modules much easier to navigate for the faculty members, but it takes significant human time to maintain the groups.
          Hide
          Lisa Kidder added a comment -

          Or perhaps the groups could be created when the child courses are added. A check box that says "Create group based on the course meta link" when you add the child course.

          Show
          Lisa Kidder added a comment - Or perhaps the groups could be created when the child courses are added. A check box that says "Create group based on the course meta link" when you add the child course.
          Hide
          Gilles-Philippe Leblanc added a comment -

          This task is marked for 1.9. Are you planning to do the same for version 2.x?

          Show
          Gilles-Philippe Leblanc added a comment - This task is marked for 1.9. Are you planning to do the same for version 2.x?
          Hide
          Robert Puffer added a comment -

          Yes, we are committed to groupings and available for this group only functionality and will continue to enhance it until Moodle core developers, in their wisdom kill this incredibly useful feature. Our CLAMP team is currently piloting 2.2.1 and we'll be working on porting our enhancements over the next four months.

          Show
          Robert Puffer added a comment - Yes, we are committed to groupings and available for this group only functionality and will continue to enhance it until Moodle core developers, in their wisdom kill this incredibly useful feature. Our CLAMP team is currently piloting 2.2.1 and we'll be working on porting our enhancements over the next four months.
          Hide
          Jean-Philippe Gaudreau added a comment -

          This patch may help solve the problem : http://tracker.moodle.org/browse/MDL-32091

          As I can see, the main problem with the situation is that it's really complicated to add members to a group from a meta link because you can't difference them in the potential members list (+ list only shows a max of 100 users).

          It sure don't auto sync with the course meta links but it's closer to how groups work right now (less side effects) and is really helping users to add members from specific meta link.

          Show
          Jean-Philippe Gaudreau added a comment - This patch may help solve the problem : http://tracker.moodle.org/browse/MDL-32091 As I can see, the main problem with the situation is that it's really complicated to add members to a group from a meta link because you can't difference them in the potential members list (+ list only shows a max of 100 users). It sure don't auto sync with the course meta links but it's closer to how groups work right now (less side effects) and is really helping users to add members from specific meta link.
          Hide
          Robert Puffer added a comment - - edited

          Hmmm... we've been doing this for about eight months now. Wasn't a problem. Perhaps I should clarify – we autocreate and maintain population for groups named after each child course. We don't give the instructor choice in the matter, though none have asked for choice – they've all been quite gratified to have this seemingly obvious capability where it didn't exist previously.

          Show
          Robert Puffer added a comment - - edited Hmmm... we've been doing this for about eight months now. Wasn't a problem. Perhaps I should clarify – we autocreate and maintain population for groups named after each child course. We don't give the instructor choice in the matter, though none have asked for choice – they've all been quite gratified to have this seemingly obvious capability where it didn't exist previously.
          Hide
          Jean-Philippe Gaudreau added a comment - - edited

          Hi Robert,

          Good I still think that auto creating group for course meta links (auto-synchronisation) is a good idea and I'm glad to hear that you're working on it! In fact, I think the best scenario is to have both solutions.

          Is you're patch soon to be released? Can we see the code on github?

          thx!

          Show
          Jean-Philippe Gaudreau added a comment - - edited Hi Robert, Good I still think that auto creating group for course meta links (auto-synchronisation) is a good idea and I'm glad to hear that you're working on it! In fact, I think the best scenario is to have both solutions. Is you're patch soon to be released? Can we see the code on github? thx!
          Hide
          Thomas Robb added a comment -

          Discussion of cohorts vs metacourses

          Show
          Thomas Robb added a comment - Discussion of cohorts vs metacourses
          Hide
          Grzegorz Woloszyn added a comment -

          Based on requests and feedback we have received from multiple instructors I can say that it would be useful to have more options:
          a) creating groups exactly reflecting child course assignments
          b) creating smaller groups of users belonging to the same child course - manually
          c) creating smaller groups of users belonging to the same child course - automatically

          Show
          Grzegorz Woloszyn added a comment - Based on requests and feedback we have received from multiple instructors I can say that it would be useful to have more options: a) creating groups exactly reflecting child course assignments b) creating smaller groups of users belonging to the same child course - manually c) creating smaller groups of users belonging to the same child course - automatically
          Hide
          Michael Drawe added a comment -

          We need the method to merge / to inherit the exact groups of the child course.

          In the past, each of our classes had got a new course per topic.

          Because of the growing numbers of courses for each class it is our new plan to have only one course per topic / issue. We only try to change the groups (classes). So it would be good, if we could manage that via Meta-Courses and inheritance groups. Thank you.

          Show
          Michael Drawe added a comment - We need the method to merge / to inherit the exact groups of the child course. In the past, each of our classes had got a new course per topic. Because of the growing numbers of courses for each class it is our new plan to have only one course per topic / issue. We only try to change the groups (classes). So it would be good, if we could manage that via Meta-Courses and inheritance groups. Thank you.
          Hide
          Matthew Cheng added a comment -

          Has there been any update on a patch that implements this?

          Show
          Matthew Cheng added a comment - Has there been any update on a patch that implements this?
          Hide
          Robert Puffer added a comment -

          I looked into duplicating our effort on the Moodle 2.x side and found the groups and groupings code to have entirely changed. Have not had anytime to pursue a port since we've just gone live with Moodle 2.x in February.

          Show
          Robert Puffer added a comment - I looked into duplicating our effort on the Moodle 2.x side and found the groups and groupings code to have entirely changed. Have not had anytime to pursue a port since we've just gone live with Moodle 2.x in February.
          Hide
          Melissa Benson added a comment -

          I'm looking into Meta Courses more with the popular requests of sharing resources in Moodle courses and I was surprised to see that Groups did not transfer over into META courses . Voted, hopefully this issue gets some activity!

          Show
          Melissa Benson added a comment - I'm looking into Meta Courses more with the popular requests of sharing resources in Moodle courses and I was surprised to see that Groups did not transfer over into META courses . Voted, hopefully this issue gets some activity!
          Hide
          Normand Charette added a comment -

          I agree this would be a nice addition to enhance the Meta courses. We continue to manually add users to Groups based upon Course sections (A,B,C,etc). This would make the process much easier. I am curious... What are the pitfalls of making a checkbox to automate the group creation process when we enroll meta courses?

          Show
          Normand Charette added a comment - I agree this would be a nice addition to enhance the Meta courses. We continue to manually add users to Groups based upon Course sections (A,B,C,etc). This would make the process much easier. I am curious... What are the pitfalls of making a checkbox to automate the group creation process when we enroll meta courses?
          Hide
          Robert Puffer added a comment -

          I looked at this again in June and found the coding project to be very complex. The major issues are keeping the groups synchronized with the child course enrollments.

          Show
          Robert Puffer added a comment - I looked at this again in June and found the coding project to be very complex. The major issues are keeping the groups synchronized with the child course enrollments.
          Hide
          Thomas Robb added a comment -

          I don't think we can assume that people will always want the child courses synced. Once the groups have been made, there can be a button for manual triggering a re-sync if desired, or (more complex) a cron job to regularly sync but this should be optional (or perhaps the default with a way to deselect it).

          I'd be happy if it just did the initial group assignments!

          Show
          Thomas Robb added a comment - I don't think we can assume that people will always want the child courses synced. Once the groups have been made, there can be a button for manual triggering a re-sync if desired, or (more complex) a cron job to regularly sync but this should be optional (or perhaps the default with a way to deselect it). I'd be happy if it just did the initial group assignments!
          Hide
          Melissa Benson added a comment -

          I agree that in some instances you wouldn't need or want the groups to sync so an optional sync would be ideal. My needs right now are to sync groups but I'm sure once that's implemented I'll run into a situation where it's not desired.

          Show
          Melissa Benson added a comment - I agree that in some instances you wouldn't need or want the groups to sync so an optional sync would be ideal. My needs right now are to sync groups but I'm sure once that's implemented I'll run into a situation where it's not desired.
          Hide
          Robert Puffer added a comment -

          I have a fork off from master that addresses this problem and the problem with how adding child courses to meta courses is handled (we revert back to the old way). Because the latter requires a (mostly) rewrite of enrol/meta/addinstance.php and that also would be where auto-groups would be created for the children, I've had to gang these two issues (this one and MDL-27628) together – I'm not going to maintain separate branches for such trivial code as required by the auto-groups. The auto-groups feature auto-populates the groups initially but does nothing for maintaining them as child course enrollments are updated (a significant effort). You can pick this up at https://github.com/bobpuffer/moodle_fork/tree/MDL-17929_27628-revert_meta_enrol-auto-groups_for_children

          Show
          Robert Puffer added a comment - I have a fork off from master that addresses this problem and the problem with how adding child courses to meta courses is handled (we revert back to the old way). Because the latter requires a (mostly) rewrite of enrol/meta/addinstance.php and that also would be where auto-groups would be created for the children, I've had to gang these two issues (this one and MDL-27628 ) together – I'm not going to maintain separate branches for such trivial code as required by the auto-groups. The auto-groups feature auto-populates the groups initially but does nothing for maintaining them as child course enrollments are updated (a significant effort). You can pick this up at https://github.com/bobpuffer/moodle_fork/tree/MDL-17929_27628-revert_meta_enrol-auto-groups_for_children
          Hide
          Thomas Robb added a comment -

          Just place the dearchived file in the blocks directory and go to site admin/notifications.

          Show
          Thomas Robb added a comment - Just place the dearchived file in the blocks directory and go to site admin/notifications.
          Hide
          Thomas Robb added a comment - - edited

          I've made a small block called "groupreg" that allows teachers to register students in a course and add them to existing or new groups from a .csv file. Hopefully, this will help offset the lack of functionality when adding child courses to a parent meta-course. The .csv file contains one or two fields. The first is either the students' usernames or email addresses. The second field is the new or existing group name. An Excel report of the results can be downloaded. Just place the dearchived file in the blocks directory and go to site admin/notifications.

          The block should be compatible with 2.3 or newer, but has not been tested on all versions. I've attached the block herewith. Feedback welcome!

          Show
          Thomas Robb added a comment - - edited I've made a small block called "groupreg" that allows teachers to register students in a course and add them to existing or new groups from a .csv file. Hopefully, this will help offset the lack of functionality when adding child courses to a parent meta-course. The .csv file contains one or two fields. The first is either the students' usernames or email addresses. The second field is the new or existing group name. An Excel report of the results can be downloaded. Just place the dearchived file in the blocks directory and go to site admin/notifications. The block should be compatible with 2.3 or newer, but has not been tested on all versions. I've attached the block herewith. Feedback welcome!
          Hide
          Joshua Holden added a comment -

          Hi, Thomas! How your block compare with the "Mass enrolments" plugin at https://moodle.org/plugins/view.php?plugin=local_mass_enroll? Thanks!

          Show
          Joshua Holden added a comment - Hi, Thomas! How your block compare with the "Mass enrolments" plugin at https://moodle.org/plugins/view.php?plugin=local_mass_enroll? Thanks!
          Hide
          Thomas Robb added a comment -

          In response to Joshua Holden >How your block compare with the "Mass enrolments" plugin...?

          Frankly, I wasn't aware of its existence, but the accomplish a similar task. Mine is a block rather than a line in the admin menu. It is simpler with no options apart from what you place in the .csv file. If a new group name is present, the group is created. If the group already exists, the student is added to the group. There are no problems with capabilities, that I know of. It's simple and it works!

          Show
          Thomas Robb added a comment - In response to Joshua Holden >How your block compare with the "Mass enrolments" plugin...? Frankly, I wasn't aware of its existence, but the accomplish a similar task. Mine is a block rather than a line in the admin menu. It is simpler with no options apart from what you place in the .csv file. If a new group name is present, the group is created. If the group already exists, the student is added to the group. There are no problems with capabilities, that I know of. It's simple and it works!
          Hide
          Christopher Fuhrman added a comment -

          It think this feature should be something simpler and on a higher level.

          It would be logical and useful if every child course simply had its own group (that exists automatically, doesn't require a manual step, and is automatically updated as the enrollment changes in the child course). The name for the group would be the same as the name for the child course. Call it a "dynamic group" function for child courses if you like.

          Show
          Christopher Fuhrman added a comment - It think this feature should be something simpler and on a higher level. It would be logical and useful if every child course simply had its own group (that exists automatically, doesn't require a manual step, and is automatically updated as the enrollment changes in the child course). The name for the group would be the same as the name for the child course. Call it a "dynamic group" function for child courses if you like.
          Hide
          Nadav Kavalerchik added a comment -

          Adding Moodle 2.5 since it is still relevant to Moodle 2.5

          Show
          Nadav Kavalerchik added a comment - Adding Moodle 2.5 since it is still relevant to Moodle 2.5
          Hide
          Paul Holden added a comment -

          Still relevant in Moodle 2.6 According to the following docs page this feature did exist at some point in the past:

          http://docs.moodle.org/22/en/Metacourse#Groups_do_not_transfer

          Show
          Paul Holden added a comment - Still relevant in Moodle 2.6 According to the following docs page this feature did exist at some point in the past: http://docs.moodle.org/22/en/Metacourse#Groups_do_not_transfer
          Hide
          Paul Holden added a comment -

          I've created a plugin for Moodle 2.6 that adds this functionality; once meta-course enrolments have been set up, any amendments made to groups in 'child' courses will automatically be reflected in the linked meta-course. The link between the groups in each course is then maintained.

          https://moodle.org/plugins/view.php?plugin=local_metagroups

          Show
          Paul Holden added a comment - I've created a plugin for Moodle 2.6 that adds this functionality; once meta-course enrolments have been set up, any amendments made to groups in 'child' courses will automatically be reflected in the linked meta-course. The link between the groups in each course is then maintained. https://moodle.org/plugins/view.php?plugin=local_metagroups

            Dates

            • Created:
              Updated: