Groups

Groups can be used to organize students’ work on projects or assignments.

Students can belong to any number of groups in the same unit. Each group can have its own discussion forums, assignment folders, and locker area to work in. Members of groups can be graded as a team or individually. When you grade a group assignment all team members receive the same grade automatically, which means you only need to input this once for the team. This doesn’t mean however if you wish to alter grades for team performance you can’t, you still can alter individual grades via the gradebook.

Faculty of Business and Law Learning Innovations team can support Unit Teams in the setup of Groups. Unit Chairs can request for setup of Assignment folder, Grades, Rubric and Groups by completing the online web form.

New Features for Groups in CloudDeakin

With the CloudDeakin v10.6 upgrade, staff members will now be able to:

  • Set a self-enrolment expiry date for students (recommended 2 to 4 weeks period to self-enroll): This means that the self-enrolment option will automatically cease on a set date and time and students will no longer be able to enroll
  • Students can now choose to un-enroll themselves from This means they can change groups until the self-enrollment expiry date.
  • Set a pre-fix for each group: This allows adding a prefix, for example, Tx Year Unitcode Context g.
  • T1 2018 MAA103 Assignment 1 Group before the name of each created group under a category.
  • Several CloudDeakin elements including groups can be used to apply selective release
  • For example, topic files, news items, dropboxes, discussion forums, can be selectively released to a particular group or to several groups.

Understanding how groups are setup

When creating groups, the Group Prefix field should be used. This makes it easier if statistics on group members are needed down the track. The group prefix should be Tx_Year_Unitcode_ass1

Before you setup groups in your unit you should know how you want them to be organized. A number of things can affect how users are enrolled in groups:

  • Are students already enrolled in the unit or is the classlist empty?
  • Do you allow students to enroll themselves in groups or would you prefer to auto-enroll and distribute students randomly to groups?

Please note: In most cases, especially for large cohorts, it is better to set up groups after students are enrolled in your course. This gives you a better idea of how many students you have and therefore how many groups you will need. Setting up groups after enrollment can also ensure better random distribution of users between groups.

The following descriptions explain the options available when creating new groups and how the different options can be used:

  • # of Groups – No Auto Enrollments – A specified number of groups are created, which you can manually add any number of users to through the Enroll Users page. This option requires the Unit Chair to enroll users into groups. Use this enrollment type when you know, how many groups you want to create and which users you want in each
  • Groups of # – The minimum number of groups needed to place users in a groups of a specified maximum size are created. More groups are created when they are needed to accommodate students that enroll after the groups are created when the option “Auto- enroll new users” is selected. You can also choose to have the students randomly distributed to Use this enrollment type when you know how many users you want in each group and don’t allow students to self-enroll.
  • # of Groups – A specified number of groups are created where you can choose to have the users randomly distributed or not. Make sure you select “Auto-enroll new users” so any new students who are enrolled in your unit are automatically allocated a
  • Groups of # – Self Enrolment – This option enables Unit Chairs to cap the number of students in a group. The minimum number of groups needed based on the numbers of students enrolled divided by the capped amount are created automatically. If you do not wait until students are enrolled in the unit to create this type of group you will have to create each group manually. If you require additional groups due to being flexible about how many students can work on a group project, ie. the group may be capped at 3 but you might allow 2 to work in a group, you will need to manually create extra groups to accommodate this. You should be aware that you cannot add extra groups once you get to 200 groups. If you have large cohorts of students that require more groups contact BL- Learning Innovations CloudDeakin Support (bl- learninginnovations@deakin.edu.au) for assistance with this. Use this enrollment type when you know how many users you want in each
  • # of Groups – Self Enrolment – This option creates a specified number of groups where students can self-enroll into Use this enrollment type, when you want to make a specific number of groups available for users to join.
  • # of Groups of # – Self Enrollment – This enrollment type is useful in situations where students are self-enrolling into groups with a fixed capacity. Use this enrollment type to determine the structure of groups (number of groups and size of each group) in Users can choose which group they would like to join, subject to the constraints of the group structure.

Enrolling/Un-enrolling Users in Groups

Users are enrolled in groups based on the enrollment options select on the New Category page. Use the enroll users page to:

  • Manually enroll users in groups if you selected # of Groups – No Auto Enrollments.
  • Manually change which group a student is enrolled
  • Add users who enrolled late to a unit if auto enroll new user is not
  • Search for students who have not been assigned to a group

Modify or add enrollment

 1. Select Groups from the Site Tools menu in the navigation

 2. If you have more than 1 group category select the group category you wish to change enrollment for.

 3. Select the group you wish to alter enrollment for

 4. Select the button enroll users.

 5. Search for the student you wish to enroll or un-enroll. To enroll the student tick the box next to the student’s name and select save. To un-enroll, deselect the tick next to the student’s name and select

What happens when you move a student to a new group?

Discussion messages remain in the old group and do not count towards a student’s grade if the forum or topic is associated with a grade item. Locker files remain in the old group. Students must add any files they want to keep to the new locker area themselves. Assignment files submitted for the old group remain with the old group. The student receives the grade achieved by the new group on any group assignments. To override this score you can change the student’s grade in the grades tool.

Setting up self-enrollment in groups

Self-enrollment allows students to enroll in groups on their own. Use this option when you want students to have the freedom to choose their own group members.

Staff should put an end date for self-enrolments. This stops students un-enrolling and re- enrolling into other groups.

Students can self-enroll in groups by selecting the choose group link in the groups tool, which can be accessed from site tools in the navigation bar.

Students should be made aware that once they have enrolled in a group they cannot un-enroll themselves. Therefore they should decide as a group which group number they are going to enroll in first and then try to do this at the same time to avoid other students enrolling in that group. If students see that there are already members listed in the group they have chosen to enroll in they can double check to see who has enrolled by selecting the number of members link for the group.

To make it easy for students to find the sign-up group page you can place a link on your content page in the group assignment module.

  1. Go the groups tool, select collaborate > groups from the navigation
  2. Select the category of the group in the dropdown menu view categories
  3. Copy the URL from the browser
  4. Go to content from the navigation bar and select the module in the table of contents where you want to place the
  5. Select New Link from the drop down menu new.
  6. Give the link a title g: Group Signup Sheet Assignment 1
  7. Paste in the URL you copied from the
  8. Select Create.
  9. Test the link by selecting it in the content list.

Please note: If you have published your assignment feedback and grades and don’t want students to see this you will also need to remove the groups tool from the navigation as students can access their assignment feedback from this link also. Contact bl-learninginnovations@deakin.edu.au for assistance in placing the link on your content page or removing access to the group tool.

What students see in the Groups tool

Students access the groups tool through the collaboration link in the navigation bar. You can also place a link to the groups tool on the content page as explained above.

On the manage groups page, students can do the following:

  • Select choose group link beside an enrollment message to enroll in a new
  • Select the number in the members column to view the member list for a
  • Select an assignment folder to view its
  • Select a discussion forum to view its
  • Select a link to a groups locker
  • Select email group to email all members of a group.

Creating Marking Groups for Tutors

Do you need to distribute student’s assignments for marking, in the assignment folder, to marking tutors? You can use the group function to allocate a randomly distributed group of students to each tutor.

Here are the steps on how to do it:

  • Create a new group category in your CloudDeakin unit with the option to automatically enroll students in the required number of groups, e. 1 group per tutor. Select the option to randomise users in groups and auto-enroll new users.
  • From within the assignment folder select view by “Groups” and click the apply button
  • select the marking group allocated to you from the drop down list and click apply
  • To keep a track of who has and hasn’t been marked you can use the feedback drop down To view students in your group who haven’t been marked yet, from the feedback drop down list select “Users without feedback”.

Tips and hints using the groups tool

  • You can find out what group a student is enrolled in by going to the classlist and then selecting “View Group Enrolments For” from the dropdown list next to the student’s
  • You cannot automatically create capped groups on mass before students are enrolled. Groups are automatically generated based on capped amount and how many students are enrolled, therefore if there are no students in the classlist you have to manually create each
  • You can now setup self-enrolling groups before students are enrolled in the There is a new option “# of Groups of # – self enrollment”.
  • You cannot have more than 200 groups in a category, however if you have automatically created capped groups the system will generate more than 200 to accommodate the number of students Please note you will not be able to add additional groups to categories exceeding 200.
  • You cannot hide groups and or restrict groups based on campus, date
  • You cannot add a student to a group that is capped and
  • If a student withdrawals and then re-enrolls they are put back into the group they initially enrolled in which could cause the capped group to go over if another student has joined that group in the
  • You cannot setup restrictions for an assignment folder whilst adding an assignment folder during creation of a group, you need to go into the assignment folder after it’s been created and edit the settings to add the necessary restrictions such as start, end and due
  • You need to remove the groups function whilst marking as students can access the assignment folder and feedback via groups. Contact BL Learning Innovations support (bl-learninginnovations@deakin.edu.au) for assistance with this task.
  • If you setup a group that automatically assigns students to the group, make sure you select the “Auto-Enroll new users” option in case students enroll into your unit after you have setup groups.

Additional Information

Additional information on setting up and managing groups in CloudDeakin is available on the CloudDeakin Guides Website

If you need further assistance with setting up this functionality in your CloudDeakin unit please contact bl-learninginnovations@deakin.edu.au.