Collapsed Topics

Course formats ::: format_topcoll
Maintained by Gareth J BarnardGareth J Barnard
An interchangeable topic or week based format that solves the issue of the 'Scroll of Death' when a course has many topics.
Latest release:
6042 sites
3k downloads
145 fans
Current versions available: 23

An interchangeable topic or week (day for 2.3.1+) based format that solves the issue of the 'Scroll of Death' when a course has many topics / weeks. All sections except zero have a toggle that displays that section. One or more sections can be displayed at any given time. Toggles are persistent on a per browser session per course basis but can be made to persist longer by a small code change. Full installation instructions, code adapt-ions and credits are included in the 'Readme.md' file.

If you have a course with more than fifty two sections then currently the toggle persistence will not work for the fifty third section and above.  Then you need to upgrade to the Moodle 2.5 version+.

Support:

The format comes with NO support.  Please see the 'Support' section in 'Readme.md' file that comes with the format.  This is because the format is complex and I regret that I don't have the time / resources to freely assist with questions pertaining to specific enhancements / changes / knowledge improvement.

I will investigate genuine bugs and issue fixes in a timescale set by myself.  When reporting issues you MUST clearly state the full version and release of both Moodle and the Collapsed Topics format as contained within their 'version.php' files - if not it takes me longer to figure out, often resulting in me asking for the details anyway and slowing the process of solving your problem down.  It really helps to read the 'Reporting Issues' section in the 'Readme.md' file and upload and describe in detail the issue you are having on the 'Course formats' forum.

Book:

NEW: 'The Complete Guide to Collapsed Topics' (and 'Blurb') book is now available, covering: installation, upgrade, uninstallation, course and global features, resetting, capabilities, language strings, overriding icons / styles in a theme and adding a new icon set.

The Complete Guide to Collapsed Topics book


The Complete Guide to Collapsed Topics book on a book stand


Inside the Complete Guide to Collapsed Topics.


NOTE: The latest version incorporates functionality to support new UK / EU Cookie Law which is implemented as a user acceptance in the 1.9 version and no 'cookie' is used at all in 2.x versions.

Screen casts:




Privacy API support starts with V3.3.1.2 for M3.3 and V3.4.0.2 for M3.4 where the API has been implemented in the minor release of Moodle.

Screenshots

Screenshot #0
Screenshot #1
Screenshot #2
Screenshot #3
Screenshot #4
Screenshot #5
Screenshot #6
Screenshot #7

Contributors

Gareth J Barnard
Gareth J Barnard (Lead maintainer)
Please login to view contributors details and/or to contact them

Comments RSS

Comments

  • Gareth J Barnard
    Wed, Mar 10, 2021, 1:03 AM
    Dear Dani,

    This https://github.com/gjb2048/moodle-format_topcoll/commit/86ee866f8100196f7d598779200cde9353d8d0d5 is the patch that will work on all versions of CT from 3.8.x to 3.10.x.

    Gareth
  • Wed, Mar 10, 2021, 2:10 AM
    Dear Gareth,

    Thanks a lot. That was very quick.
    To your question: When I install the plugin for our test-server over the Moodle plugins directory, it shows for whatever reasons that its v3.8 and not v3.9.4+. Therefore, I mistakenly took the v3.8 "installer" zip.
    Thanks again for your much-appreciated support.
    Dani
  • Fri, Mar 19, 2021, 5:10 AM
    Is there a way to add spaces between the collapsed topics and hide the circle at the end of the collapsed bar?
  • Gareth J Barnard
    Fri, Mar 19, 2021, 5:54 AM
    Dear Ben,

    A -> Use CSS.
    B -> Use the 'View single section enabled' setting in the course format settings of the course settings.

    G
  • Sun, Mar 21, 2021, 6:54 AM
    Hello. I am in the middle of updating Moodle. I'm getting this error when viewing a course with Collapsed Topics:

    Coding error detected, it must be fixed by a programmer: Request for an unknown renderer format_topcoll, course, general
  • Gareth J Barnard
    Sun, Mar 21, 2021, 7:03 AM
    Dear Prashad,

    You've probably deleted the renderer.php file or something like that.

    G
  • Sat, Apr 10, 2021, 5:48 PM
    Hi Gareth,

    thanks for all your work. When will this plugin be ready for moodle 3.9+ ?
  • Gareth J Barnard
    Sat, Apr 10, 2021, 7:52 PM
    Dear Patrick,

    ???? It has been for ages! -> https://moodle.org/plugins/format_topcoll/versions.

    G
  • Fri, Apr 16, 2021, 9:39 PM
    Greetings Gareth.
    When using this plugin - we get four extra blocks in the course (when the course is created with Collapsed Topics format). Or, when we import a course, and import into Collapsed Topics. The "extra" blocks are: "Search Forums", "Latest News", "Upcoming Events", and "Recent Activity". We really like the Collapsed Topics Format - however, is there a way to turn off the blocks so that they don't appear in the courses by default? We're even have a bit of "extra issues" when we create courses using the Ellucian ILP interface- we get two each of the 4 blocks instead of just one of each of the blocks. So - a few questions:
    1) Are the 4 blocks even supposed to be there?
    2) If they are supposed to be there - Is there a way to turn them off?
    3) Any idea why duplicates are being created at times?
    4) Any suggestions for troubleshooting these issues?

    Love the tool, thanks for the work that you do for the community.
  • Gareth J Barnard
    Fri, Apr 16, 2021, 11:56 PM
    Dear John,

    1) Yes.
    2) See the config.php file in the format.
    3) No.
    4) See 2.

    Kind regards,

    Gareth
  • larry's pix
    Mon, Jul 12, 2021, 9:29 PM
    Hi Gareth

    Version 3.9.1.5 (2020071810) update is causing an issue on some of my sites of Moodle 3.9.8. It is not allowing the upgrading process to complete. Sample error output is listed below.

    Invalid get_string() identifier: 'pluginname' or component 'block_accessibility'. Perhaps you are missing $string['pluginname'] = ''; in /lang/en/block_accessibility.php?
    line 353 of /lib/classes/string_manager_standard.php: call to debugging()
    line 7401 of /lib/moodlelib.php: call to core_string_manager_standard->get_string()
    line 58 of /course/format/topcoll/settings.php: call to get_string()
    line 110 of /lib/classes/plugininfo/format.php: call to include()
    line 59 of /admin/settings/plugins.php: call to core\plugininfo\format->load_settings()
    line 8672 of /lib/adminlib.php: call to require()
    line 821 of /admin/index.php: call to admin_get_root()
    Invalid get_string() identifier: 'pluginname' or component 'block_ajax_marking'. Perhaps you are missing $string['pluginname'] = ''; in /lang/en/block_ajax_marking.php?
    line 353 of /lib/classes/string_manager_standard.php: call to debugging()
    line 7401 of /lib/moodlelib.php: call to core_string_manager_standard->get_string()
    line 58 of /course/format/topcoll/settings.php: call to get_string()
    line 110 of /lib/classes/plugininfo/format.php: call to include()
    line 59 of /admin/settings/plugins.php: call to core\plugininfo\format->load_settings()
    line 8672 of /lib/adminlib.php: call to require()
    line 821 of /admin/index.php: call to admin_get_root()
  • Gareth J Barnard
    Mon, Jul 12, 2021, 11:48 PM
    Dear Larry,

    It looks like you have some contributed blocks that do not define the standard 'pluginname' string that they should do. Please contact their developers and / or add the strings to the plugins.

    G
  • Tue, Jul 20, 2021, 7:22 AM
    Hi -- I'm not understanding the purpose of this enhancement: Added 'Toggle blocks location' functionality. I'm running Moodle 3.10.5, and I don't see what this does. Is there documentation that explains this? Thanks much... Brian
  • Gareth J Barnard
    Tue, Jul 20, 2021, 11:32 PM
    Dear Brian,

    No documentation yet. Its to do with being able to specify the default blocks upon creation of a Collapsed Topics course via the UI. See: https://docs.moodle.org/dev/Course_formats#Default_blocks.

    Gareth
  • Brian
    Thu, Aug 26, 2021, 5:23 PM
    Hi Gareth

    We are on Moodle 3.9.9 (Build: 20210729) and Collapsed Topics format_topcoll 3.9.1.5 2020071810

    Course designers have created some very long courses (70+ sections, 300+ activities) and since the upgrade to 3.9.9 Moodle (maybe before) we find that although students can load the page OK, we get a php timeout for editors and admins.

    Strangely if we switch the course to "topics" course format it loads fine and if we switch editing on using "collapsed topics" course format it loads fine. It is just when editing is not on, but the role is teacher or admin, the load times out.

    It is of course possible to extend the php timeout, but that is currently set at a minute and such a long page load needs to be fixed.

    I have of course requested course designers to remove hidden content which was being kept as a sort of course archive to reduce the overhead, but wonder if you are aware of any known issues or bugs on collapsed topics? We have a couple of courses which take less than the full minute (so they don't time out) but still take 40-50 seconds to load.

    Thanks if you can help us understand what is going on with collapsed topics.

    Best regards

    Brian
Please login to post comments