General help

Confusion over meta-courses

 
Picture of Annie Price
Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi everyone,

I'm hoping someone can help me.  I have been reading up on meta-courses and I'm sorry to say that I am still confused.  What I'm hoping is that if I explain what I already have and what I want someone can give me instructions as to what to do. (crosses fingers and prays).

Ok currently I have 4 beginners modules, 4 advanced modules and 4 professional modules.  At present they are only offered as one complete course - the students purchase one module and the others are added manually by me.

I have had requests for students to buy the modules in different formats.  So what I would like to offer is ....

Course 1 - all the beginners modules
course 2 - all the advanced modules
course 3 - all the professional modules
course 4 - all the beginners and advanced modules
course 5 - all the advanced and professional modules
course 6 - all beginners, advanced and professional modules

How do I achieve this?  And without affecting the students that are already enrolled on all the above courses.

A question: if these are set up as meta-courses, what appears in the students 'my courses' box?

I would be extremely grateful for any help you can give me.

Annie

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

On researching the forums I found the following

"if you have a course up and running with regular users you can't just change that into a metacourse."

So I'm presuming (probably wrongly as I'm becoming more and more confused) that i won't be able to achieve what I want to without affecting the existing students.

I think my confusion lies with what is a meta-course and what is a child course.

If my required courses above are meta-courses and the existing modules are child courses I 'think' everything would be ok (so long as it doesn't affect the current students (whom I presume I would have to enrol in course 6?)) and that the modules can be child courses of more than one of the required courses.

But if the existing modules are meta-courses and the required courses are child courses that would mean I have a problem. 

Am I making any sense whatsoever? 

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Itamar Tzadok
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Core developersDocumentation writersPlugin developers
Try the following scheme:

Regular courses:
  • Course 1 - Clients who want only beginners modules
  • Course 2 - Clients who want only advanced modules
  • Course 3 - Clients who want only professional modules
  • Course 4 - Clients who want Beginners + Advanced modules
  • Course 5 - Clients who want Advanced + Professional modules
  • Course 6 - Clients who want Beginners + Advanced + Professional modules
These courses should have no modules of their own!

Now,
  • Metacourse 1 - all the beginners modules
    • Childcourse - Course 1
    • Childcourse - Course 4
    • Childcourse - Course 6
  • Metacourse 2 - all the advanced modules
    • Childcourse - Course 2
    • Childcourse - Course 4
    • Childcourse - Course 5
    • Childcourse - Course 6
  • Metacourse 3 - all the professional modules
    • Childcourse - Course 3
    • Childcourse - Course 5
    • Childcourse - Course 6
Those who are enrolled in course 1 have access only to metacourse 1 and so only to the beginners modules. Those who are enrolled in course 5 have access to metacourses 2 and 3 and so to the advanced and professional modules. And so on.

The metacourses do not have enrollment of their own but rather inherit the enrollment of their child courses. Consequently someone who is enrolled in a childcourse is automatically enrolled in the metacourse of which the childcourse is a child and has access to all the resources and activities in the metacourse.

Hope this helps more than confuses. smile
 
Average of ratings: Useful (3)
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Thanks so much Itimar, your scheme clears up which are meta-courses and childcourses.

However, I read somewhere else on the forums that

"if you have a course up and running with regular users you can't just change that into a metacourse."

which is what I would need to do.  Which leads to the questions -

Why can't I change existing courses with users into meta-courses?

Is there any other way I can achieve what I need to?

 
Average of ratings: -
Mary Cooch
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersMoodle Course Creator Certificate holdersMoodle HQParticularly helpful MoodlersTestersTranslators
If you have a course up and running with regular users you cant just change that into a metacourse - my understanding IIRC is that if you take out all the users then you can change it into a metacourse
 
Average of ratings: -
moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers
The Moodle Docs for meta courses were rewritten earlier this year and a considerably more clear than they were. That should make it a lot clearer.
 
Average of ratings: -
hmmm
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 
Well done with the Docs rewrite (& illustrations), BTW
 
Average of ratings: -
moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers
Thank you.. Chris will be pleased as well...
 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi Mary,

Thanks for the response.  The problem is that if I take out all the current users to turn it into a meta-course then they have lost their course and all the work they have done.  Haven't they?

 
Average of ratings: -
moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers
Backup the course first, but just the user files. Restore to the child course. That should work.
 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi Colin,

Thanks for the response.

The thought of doing that makes me quake with fear. 

I think it would be better to make a complete copy of the course on a sub-domain and try it out so that I'm not interferring with the current work students are doing.  Do you think this would be possible? 

It's easy to make a copy of the site files but do you know how I make a copy of the moodle files directory and the database?

 
Average of ratings: -
moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers
ALWAYS test things first. I have a private Moodle on my laptop and I am always wrecking it, I am the only person I know who has managed to wear out a Moodle installation download.big grinbig grinbig grinbig grin

Easy to set up and maintain and if it goes bung, then it is easy to replace without getting anyone upset! Testing is its only purpose, and when it goes wrong, I just delete it and copy things over. What I did was to install first, then copy the files, and made sure I have a copy of the database and the moodledata file. They are quarantined. I have three course backups and a flat file of about 12 users.

I have installed Apache, PHP MySQL and phpMyAdmin on a Windows XP laptop - easy as - and since doing that, I have only had to replace the Moodle a hundred times or so..big grin . I have not had any issues with the PHP since moving away from the Xampp installer. I no longer use the laptop for anything else btw.. and it is perfect for the purpose it is used for.


 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi Colin,

Wear out a moodle installation lol - you sure know how to instil confidence hahahaha.

Ok, I've taken backups of the site files, moodle directory and mysql database. 

I've made a sub-domain and am currently installing the copies so that I can try out your suggestions.

Wish me luck .. I will report back once I'm finished and if it's all successful hopefully this thread will help others in the same situation.

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Something went wrong!

I've uploaded the files to a sub-domain, uploaded the moodle files to a new directory, backed up and restored the mysql database to a new file name (web47-course).  I've changed config.php to match the new parameters. 

However, I now get the following error:

1146: Table 'web47-course.mdl_course' doesn't exist

What am I missing?

 
Average of ratings: -
Mary Cooch
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersMoodle Course Creator Certificate holdersMoodle HQParticularly helpful MoodlersTestersTranslators
Just a quick point - (quote) The problem is that if I take out all the current users to turn it into a meta-course then they have lost their course and all the work they have done. Haven't they?
y
es -but -as soon as you put them back in again they get all their work back.
Don't know if that helps or not but it is the way of Moodle.
 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Thanks Mary,

I am still trying to restore the database as it keeps sticking half way through, hence the problem with the missing tables.

As soon as I have the database sorted I will try.

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

I''ve finally managed to sort out the database.

So now which way do I do it ...

Colin's way where I backup the course first, but just the user files. turn the courses into meta-course and restore to the child courses.

Or ...

Mary's way where I unenrol the students, turn them into meta courses and then re-enrol them.

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Ooooo, that was heart thumpingly scary!

Ok, for the record if anyone else wants to do this, these are the steps I took...

(a) create a sub-domain and copy over all files (site files, moodle files, mysql database)

On the copied installation ....

(b) create child courses

(c) remove students enrolled in the original courses

(d) change the original courses to meta courses

(e) apply the child courses to the meta courses

(f) enrol the students in the appropriate child course

(g) force the cron job to run

Now all I have to do is delete the files from the old course.   Eeeeeek!

And after going through all that it occurs to me that a more logical name for child courses would be 'enrolment modules' with the meta-courses linked to them.

I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has helped me - I couldn't have done it without your help.

Heading off for a well deserved cuppa and to find the headache pills - I worked hard for them.

 
Average of ratings: Useful (1)
Picture of Annie Price
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

One final question:

In the courses box both the child courses and meta courses appear in the list.  Is it possible for just the child courses (the ones available for purchase) to appear in this list and if so, how?

Annie

 
Average of ratings: -
moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers
Dunno... never thought about it... You want the meta course to be available as a marketing device, but you want to protect the privacy of the child courses. Students cannot enrol in meta courses, they have to be enrolled as part of a process via the child course.

At one level, there is an issue that strikes me as something of a glitch, a programmatic oversight perhaps. Using the meta courses for marketing, but hiding the child courses actually makes a lot of sense. At another level though is it really an issue? Common course security settings should prevent unauthorized access.

...mmmmmmmmm perhaps this is an issue for Moodle Tracker... and further discussion, or perhaps discussion has already taken place and decisions made, and no one will want to revisit it. Anyone have any suggestions or thoughts?
 
Average of ratings: -
Sarah Ashley
Re: Confusion over meta-courses > to convert regular course to meta
 

Hi Mary,

I just wanted to add here, about converting a regular course to a meta-course, that it can be done (in 1.8-1.9.9) without unenrolling users.

I frequently get requests from faculty who decide almost half-way into the semester or term that they want to combine courses or sections. The material they want to be common to all is in a particular course X. So that means I need to turn X into a metacourse and let in the other sections by adding them as child courses.

First I override the permissions for Students and set "manage metacourse" to "Allow" which releases the "Is this a metacourse" option in the Course Settings. So I can choose Yes for that. And set the Group Mode to Separate Groups.

Next I create as many groups as there will be child courses and put the existing students who are already in the metacourse into their Group. Then I can go to the Child Courses link in the Admin block and add the child courses one at a time. i.e. Add child course Y and go to the Groups and add all students not in a group (indicated by the zero next to their names) into the Group named for section Y. Then Add child course Z and put them into their respective Group, and so on.

So, now I have turned an existing course into a metacourse. Tada!

If they need to provide content to a specific section, I teach the faculty member how to assign resources and activities via Groupings. That makes them even happier.

Don't know if this still applies in Moodle 2.x but I hope it is helpful!
Cheers!

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Paul Fynn
Re: Confusion over meta-courses > to convert regular course to meta
 

Good workaround, but when o when will we be able to bring the group across from the metacourse, or have each of the metacourses recognised as a group?

Strugging to understand why the manual version is always standard and the bulk version comes later......

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Simon S
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Greetings Moodlers.

I am a newbie and pretty confused over metacourses.

My moodle site is almost ready for launch. It is set up for professionals to earn their continuing education credits.

I would like to offer three options for them to purchase:

Course 1 (4 credit hours, which is set up in lessons)

Course 2 (8 credit hours, also set up in lessons)

Combo Course 1&2 (12 credit hours)

I know this should be a simple set up. I have read everything I can find on metacourses but I am still unclear how to set this up. Thanks for any help you can give.

I really appreciate these forums.

All my best,

Simon

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Itamar Tzadok
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Core developersDocumentation writersPlugin developers

You may be able to achieve the desired effect with groups/grouping in the same cource rather than meta/child courses. You create three groups (say: 1, 2, 12) and two groupings (say: 1 , 2) and associate them in the following way:

  • grouping 1
    • group 1
    • group 12
  • grouping 2
    • group 2
    • group 12 

Now, assign 'grouping 1' (available to group members only) to all the materials of 'Course 1', and 'grouping 2' (available to etc.) to all the materials of 'Course 2'. Then, those who purchase the 4 credit course should be assigned to group 1 and will have access only to the respective materials, those who purchase the 8 credit course should be assigned to group 2 etc., and the combo purchasers should be assigned to group 12 etc. That's it.  hth smile

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Simon S
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Thank you. I think this will work. Groups are new to me.

I wonder what group 12 will look like to the user.

I will try it.

All my best,

SAS

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Simon S
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi Itamar.

Thanks again for your help. I am trying to figure it out now. I am planning to have them enrol with authorize.net. I have no reason for them to see each other's work (which seems to be part of groups). Do you think these two things will be affected by setting up the groupings/groups?

Best,

S

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Itamar Tzadok
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Core developersDocumentation writersPlugin developers

The enrolled have to be assigned to their respective group. You need to check how this may be incorporated into your automatic enrolment procedure.

The point of setting an activity/resource to a certain grouping and available to group members only is that the activity/resource is completely hidden unless the user is a member of one of the groups in the grouping. Thus for instance, an activity set to grouping 1 will be visible and accessible only to members of group 1 and group 12.

smile

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Simon S
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Thanks again for your help. I decided to go the easiest route and just make a third course, which is a combination of the first two.

Best,

Simon

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Sophia Canedo
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hello,

I know this is at least three years old, but I have a question regarding the child courses. I have students enrolled in child course currently - using the child courses as a discount price. The issue I am having is the child courses are appearing  in the my courses area for my students. I would love to have them hidden, as its a potential to cause confusion because the courses and the meta are named the same. 


Any light would help TREMENDOUSLY! 


Thanks,


Sophia

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Bob Puffer
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Plugin developersTesters

Why are you not able to hide the child courses?

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Sophia Canedo
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hello Bob,

Yes the child course is hidden, but the students still sees it in their course listings because they're enrolled. I want to hide it in the listing so they don't see it at all. 

I pray this makes sense to you. 

Thanks!!

Sophia

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Bob Puffer
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Plugin developersTesters

We do this about forty times a term with cross-listed courses. Hiding the child course causes no students to see it so I'm confounded that your students can see a hidden course. If that is truly the case then your permissions are off.

 
Average of ratings: -
moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers

I wondered why this thread reappeared... never considered that child courses would appear in a student's course list. Check the View Hidden Courses permissions in the child course... make sure students can't see it.

Another thing, have a look at Site Administration > Plugins > Blocks > Course Overview The default setting for "Show Children" is "No" but if someone has clicked it on, then the child courses become visible.  

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Sophia Canedo
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hello Bob & Collin,

Thank you for responding. I am not having issues with the student getting into the hidden course

I am having a problem with the course ICON of the hidden course showing up in the My page of the students log in.  

SO, when the student is logged in, and they look at their course listings, they see the ICON ONLY of the hidden course that they are enrolled in. They cannot access it.

For example: In this case I am using the meta child course as a discount for employees. When the employee purchases the course Employee Discount they get enrolled in 10 courses. In the image below you see the ICONS for the 10 courses INCLUDING the ICON for the meta course in the STUDENTS listing. I don't want it to - how do I get that to GO AWAY?

I double checked the permissions and they are correct. a student CAN NOT see the course. 

They just see the icon that they are enrolled in the discount.Example Meta Issue

Any light would be good. 


Thank you!!

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Bob Puffer
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Plugin developersTesters

This is a customized presentation page that isn't taking into account the visibility and permissions. That is where the error is and that is where it would need to be fixed.

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Sophia Canedo
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi Bob,

Thank you for the response. This is EXTREMELY helpful. 

Do you know where the customization presentation page can be modified at?

I appreciate your time!

Blessing,

Sophia

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Sophia Canedo
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
 

Hi Bob,

Thank you for the response. This is EXTREMELY helpful. 

Do you know where the customization presentation page can be modified at?

I appreciate your time!

Blessing,

Sophia

 
Average of ratings: -
Picture of Bob Puffer
Re: Confusion over meta-courses
Plugin developersTesters

I'm assuming students are directed to their 'My home' page. That is the only location that can take a block placed in the middle column. The block that is there is where the customization is accomplished. I would recommend:

  1. Go to a course page
  2. Turn editing on
  3. scroll to bottom-left 
  4. click the add a block dropdown
  5. compare what is in your list with what is in the screencap I've attached. You're looking for a block not on my list that appears to have something to do with Courses
  6. Once you've discovered what block it might be you'd need to reprogram it to take into account permissions and hidden status

An alternative would be to compare your course block list (as indicated above) with the block list you get when you go to customize your My home page

Note: Configurable reports, Filtered course list, and Morsle are non-standard so you'd likely not see them.

Screencap of add a block dropdown

 
Average of ratings: -