The iCollege Groups Tool is used to help you:
- distribute your students into groups
- create a private discussion topic for each group
- create a group assignment where only one submission is required
The Groups Tool can also be used to selectively release content to students based on their membership in a specific group.
The first few minutes of the Groups and Sections Tool video give a good overview of what the Groups Tool can do!
The Groups Tool can be found in your course navigation bar under the Assessments link or, if you have a non-standard navigation bar, by selecting Course Tools and then clicking Course Admin.
Important: Groups have a maximum enrollment of 200 users. If there are more than 200 users in a course, you can create new group categories; there is no limit on the number of group categories in a course.
Before you create a new set of groups, you must set up a category and create restricted work areas for the groups. A category allows you to organize groups in iCollege and to create different groups for different activities. For example, if you plan to create 3 groups for a class project, but you want to create 6 different groups for group discussions (or 3 groups with members different from the class project), you will create two (2) group categories–Class Project and Group Discussions, respectively. You will create the actual groups within the given category.
- On the Manage Groups page, click New Category.
- Enter a Category Name and Description.
- Select an Enrollment Type from the drop-down list.
- Depending on the chosen Enrollment Type, enter the Number of Groups to create, the Number of Users per group, or both.
- To apply a distinctive prefix to each group name and code in the category, enter it in the Group Prefix field. If you do not fill in this field, the prefix defaults to “Group”.
- Depending on the chosen Enrollment Type, to automatically enroll users to groups, select Auto-enroll new users.
- Depending on the chosen Enrollment Type, to randomly place users in groups, select Randomize users in groups. If you do not choose this option, users are placed alphabetically based on the Classlist.
- Depending on the chosen Enrollment Type, to make the description of the groups visible to learners from within their groups, select Make category and group descriptions visible to group members.
- If you select an Enrollment Type that supports self enrollment, to set enrollment availability times, select the Set Self Enrollment Start Date and/or Set Self Enrollment Expiry Date check boxes and select dates from the mini calendar field.
- If you select Set Self Enrollment Expiry Date, but you want all learners who do not enroll before the expiry date to be enrolled, you can select Allocate unenrolled users after Self Enrollment Expiry Date to automatically, randomly and evenly distribute them into the available groups. This option adds group members beyond the capacity of groups, if applicable. The automatic enrollment recurs at a set interval after the expiry date to ensure that all learners are assigned to a group.
- Click Save.