With school beginning I thought it would be a good idea to write a post about automatically putting students into groups using individual enrollment keys. This is definitely NOT a new Moodle tip, but it’s such a useful piece of information that teachers love I thought I would share and remind Moodle users to take advantage of it.
Groups are set up with individual enrollment keys before students enroll into the course. Teachers will tell students what enrollment key to use according to what group the teacher wants them in. They enter in the key when enrolling into the course and they are automatically put into a group according to which key they enter.
When students are in groups teachers are able to filter grades, assignments and participation by group. This is especially useful for secondary teachers who have multiple hours (or periods) of the same class. If there were no groups teachers would see all their enrolled students in one long, alphabetized list (which is hard to manage and can get very annoying with hundreds of enrolled students!). With groups, teachers can view each group (or hour or period) separately when viewing grades, assignment and participation. If you only use groups in this way and only this way, the students will not even notice anything.
Another (more advanced) use of groups is using groups within activities. Using groups within activities allows a teacher to create an activity and view their participation by group. It also gives the teacher an option to choose whether or not the groups can or can not see other groups participation.
Click here for a video screencast I created for our district showing the below process