Activities: Subcourse

Maintained by Picture of David MudrákDavid Mudrák
Subcourse behaves as a graded activity. The grade for each student is automatically fetched from a final grade in another course. This allows course designers to organize the learning content into separate units.
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Subcourse is an activity module that represents the final grade obtained in another course. This allows to create "meta-gradebook" in one course, where all final grades from other courses are aggregated.

  • Grades are fetched automatically or can be fetched manually any time.
  • The grade type and other grade item settings are copied from the original grade total item and can not be changed.
  • Subcourse can be automatically marked as a completed when the referenced course is completed.
  • If the final grade in the referenced course is hidden, the associated subcourse activity grade is hidden, too.

This allows to apply the concept of grades aggregation to a next level and aggregate grades across courses.

Diagram illustrating course final grades aggregated to a main course via the Subcourse instances


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Picture of David Mudrák
David Mudrák (Lead maintainer)
Picture of Vadim Dvorovenko
Vadim Dvorovenko
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  • Picture of scott hallman
    Tue, May 8, 2018, 9:45 AM
    Hi David
    great plug in. Since the overview report page in moodle is all jumbled this bring a nice solution to mapping progress in over 200 courses over 5 years. I'm sure you have been asked this before. But it would seem to make more sense to have not just a link to the course the grades are coming from but rather the grader report itself. thus allowing for the drilling down of grade to see how the students got their final marks. Could an additional link be added so they can go to course and go to course grades. For students it would redirect them to the user report and for the staff to grader report of that course?
    Many thanks Scott
  • Ricardo Caiado
    Thu, Jun 21, 2018, 10:25 PM

    Any update to Moodle 3.5?

  • Picture of David Mudrák
    Fri, Jun 22, 2018, 4:49 AM

    Yes I plan to formally update it asap. Meanwhile, the current 3.4 version should just work well.

  • Ricardo Caiado
    Fri, Jun 22, 2018, 4:54 AM
    Great news
  • Picture of Aaron Johnson
    Wed, Jul 4, 2018, 10:27 PM
    Hi David,

    I too was wondering about being able to go back to the parent course from the Subcourse. I understand about not being able to link back from the Subcourse. Perhaps it would be enough if when clicking on the link, the Subcourse was opened in a new window instead of the current one. Maybe that is a feature/option you could add, similar to the URL "Appearance" setting block.

  • Picture of David Mudrák
    Thu, Jul 5, 2018, 5:55 PM

    That could be added as a feature. Please suggest it in the plugin's issues tracker. As far as I understood it, the recent best practise was to avoid doing these things on behlf of the user though. It was argued that users themselves should control how they open the link (same tab, new tab, new window etc).

  • Picture of scott hallman
    Tue, Sep 11, 2018, 6:57 AM
    Hi David
    we see to have found a bug in that when the courses final grade is hidden it still comes through in the subcourse link. I have reported to github but can't upload pictures for some reason.
  • Picture of Joseph Liaw
    Fri, Nov 16, 2018, 7:55 AM
    Hi David:

    Thank you for this FANTASTIC plugin--this allows teachers to build robust learning modules and then use a master "dashboard" course to tie together the subcourses!

    Wanted to a report a bug if any teachers use Natural Aggregation for grades (which is when a grade is simply the total of points earned divided by points possible)--the subcourse plugin does a great job of reporting back the points earned, EXCEPT if a teacher does a grade override to Exclude a grade for a student.

    The actual subcourse calculates the grade correctly, but when it passes the grade to the "dashboard" course, the Subcourse plugin still pulls the Total Points possible without factoring in the lower grade total for any students with a teacher override to Exclude any grades for a student.

    If you need screenshots I can upload them somewhere and share them.

    Thank you for sharing this great plugin with the Moodle community!
  • Picture of David Mudrák
    Fri, Nov 16, 2018, 6:31 PM

    Thank you Joseph for an important report. May I ask you to copy it into a new issue in the plugin's bug tracker (please find the link above). Thank you.

  • Picture of Joseph Liaw
    Mon, Dec 3, 2018, 9:39 AM
    Hi David:

    I added the report to Github / Bug Tracker....thanks for looking into this when you get a chance!
  • Sketch...
    Thu, Feb 14, 2019, 7:40 PM
    How do you install this activity? What are the installation instructions?
  • Picture of Joseph Liaw
    Thu, Mar 7, 2019, 10:47 PM
    Hi David:

    Thanks for your work on this GREAT plugin that makes developing complex course frameworks possible with streamlined access for students!

    Quick question: any chance you are able to look at when a Grade is excluded in a Subcourse? It looks like the grade is not calculated correctly for the individual student who has a grade excluded for an assignment / activity since the Subcourse module is grabbing the course total for the entire course vs. the individual student...

    Thanks again for sharing this fantastic plugin with the Moodle community!
  • Picture of David Mudrák
    Fri, Mar 8, 2019, 12:08 AM

    Hi Joseph. And thanks for the kind and encouraging words. I am aware of your report Unfortunately I did not have yet free time to look at it. Meanwhile, if you wish to contribute even more, it will help to have step by step instructions on how to reproduce the problem, put into the issue #29 at Github. Thanks in advance.

  • Picture of David Boggs
    Sat, Mar 30, 2019, 3:57 AM
    Hi, a couple of questions. Is there a way to disable the progress bar? The only way I have found is to turn the activity completion to 'Do not indicate'. The issue is we have tracks within a course complete this track earn a badge, complete that track earn a badge and the student does not have to complete all tracks. So basically the student completes the tracks they want but would never show 100% complete.

    Second question is what exactly does the "Redirect to the referenced course" do? I would have thought that checking this box, along with checking 'Open in new window' would open the sub-course and not just the launch page to the sub-course? Don't get me wrong this is a massive improvement, students were always complaining about getting back to the main course.
  • Sketch...
    Mon, Apr 8, 2019, 11:08 PM
    Is it correct that this plugin does not actually COPY or "duplicate" any grades into the subcourse gradebook? The grade that you see in the grader report in the subcourse activity is just a "reference" or "link" to the grade in the main course. So there is no "duplication" of grades. Am I correct?
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