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Activities: Attendance

mod_attendance
Maintained by Picture of Dan Marsden Dan Marsden
A plugin that allows an attendance log to be kept. - includes an optional block for easy access to relevant functions.
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The Attendance activity allows teachers to maintain a record of attendance, replacing or supplementing a paper-based attendance register. It is primarily used in blended-learning environments where students are required to attend classes, lectures and tutorials and allows the teacher to track and optionally provide a grade for the students attendance. The instructor can set the frequency of their classes (# of days per week & length of course) or create specific sessions. 

To take attendance, the instructor clicks on the "Update Attendance" button and is presented with a list of all the students in that course, along with configurable options and comments. The default options provided are: Present, Absent, Late & Excused. Instructors can download the attendance for their course in Excel format or text format.

Sessions can also be configured to allow students to record their own attendance and a range of different reports are available.

Sets

This plugin is part of set Attendance.

Screenshots

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Contributors

Picture of Dan Marsden
Dan Marsden (Lead maintainer)
Фотография
Artem Andreev: Previous maintainer/developer
Picture of Dmitry Pupinin
Dmitry Pupinin: Original author
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  • Picture of David Dunn
    Tue, Apr 5, 2016, 11:23 PM
    Yikes! That was a shocker for faculty this morning!

    The update appeared quickly, however, and has fixed the issue.
  • Picture of Caleb Pahl
    Sat, May 7, 2016, 5:10 AM
    We are using Moodle 2.5 and this plugin is not working. When we try to add attendance to part of a course it shows up on the course page, but then when you click on it to display it a blank page shows up. Could this be solved by upgrading to a newer version of moodle? Any help would be appreciated! Thanks.
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Sat, May 7, 2016, 11:59 AM
    Moodle dropped support for 2.5 in 2014, you should be focusing your time on upgrading to a more recent stable supported release. I don't provide support for out-of-support Moodle versions, but feel free to ask for help in the community forums and someone else might help (although the advice will likely be to upgrade.)
  • Picture of Caleb Pahl
    Tue, May 10, 2016, 12:04 AM
    Thank you Dan! We will work towards upgrading our moodle soon ... Cheers
  • Picture of Joe Rebbeck
    Sun, Jun 5, 2016, 8:40 PM
    Hi Dan.
    Just wanted to say thanks for this great plugin. I have been using this for the past two years to record the attendance of over 500 students in 50+ classes across two different implementations of Moodle and it has worked flawlessly.
    One thing that I would hugely benefit from would be some reporting (preferably an email alert) for students who miss two consecutive classes. Can you suggest any way I can achieve this.
    Many thanks once again.
    Joe
  • Picture of Rick Johns
    Mon, Jun 6, 2016, 4:45 AM
    Dan

    Just installed this plug in and it looks great. Just a linguistic improvement I suggest ...

    Where you use the word "taked" it is better English to say "taken" so the three language strings that appear in the attendance block should read :

    Sessions taken:
    Points over sessions taken:
    Percentage over sessions taken:

    I have modified my language file but would suggest you do this to the next version for download.

    PS We are an English language school smile

    Thanks

    Rick
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Tue, Jun 7, 2016, 5:44 AM
    @Rick - thanks for letting me know, I missed that while reviewing a contribution from the community. I've pushed through a new version with that change!

    @Joe - Great to hear you find the plugin useful. Unfortuantely that's not something I will have time to work on as a volunteer, feel free to get in touch privately if you are able to fund my time to develop improvements. I'd guess it might be possible using event monitoring: https://docs.moodle.org/en/Event_monitoring but I suspect the right information may not be included in the events we currently trigger.
  • Picture of Ken Ocean
    Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 9:35 AM
    Dan
    Is there anyway you can link attendance module with restricted access. I would like to prevent students from taking a quiz if they are absent in the class. Thanks
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 9:40 AM
    interesting idea - you would probably need to write a custom condition plugin that allowed you to select an attendance and possibly a session within the attendance. Let me know if you are able to fund the work to complete it!
  • Picture of Bill Junkin
    Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 10:07 AM
    Ken Ocean,
    The IPAL module may have something that is useful for you. https://moodle.org/plugins/mod_ipal
    If there is an "Attendance module" installed and the course has at least one Attendance session, IPAL offers the teacher the opportunity to create an "Attendance" question. (This is really just an essay question type (qtype=essay).) Beside each of these Attendance questions a unique id is displayed to the teacher but not to the students. The IPAL module is built for in-class polling. If the teacher sends the attendance question to the students and posts the unique id on the chalk board or displays the unique id in some other way (projector for the computer) the students in the room can see this number and enter it into the blank for this question but students not in the room will not know the unique id. After the students submit their answer, IPAL provides a utility that will parse all the student answers and mark everyone present in the attendance module for that session automatically for all those giving the correct answer.
    IPAL uses quizzes that are created in the same manner that a quiz is created in the quiz module but does not have the option of entering anything in the grade book, but only in the records in the attendance module. The "attendance question" created in IPAL can be used in a regular quiz, but there is no way that IPAL can grade it automatically if it is not being used in an IPAL session. So, I don't know if this is useful or not. You could create a one question IPAL instance and have the students answer the attendance question before taking the quiz and then manually set the quiz grade to zero for all students that were not marked present by IPAL. Another option doesn't use IPAL at all -- the first question in the quiz (worth lots of points) could be a short answer or numerical answer question where you know the unique correct answer (which you post somewhere in the room or tell the students verbally) and only the students in the room will get the answer correct.
    Of course, with IPAL and most other possibilities I don't know any way to prevent students in the room from sending to their absent classmates the unique id. If any of this is useful, feel free to contact me (junkinwf@eckerd.edu).
  • Lina
    Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 4:22 PM
    Hi Dan. Many thanks for providing this plugin to the community; its functionality is really appreciated by our staff and students, and we’re really grateful to you for your efforts to maintain and update it.

    On that note, please could I quickly query whether you have any plans to update the plugin to be fully compatible with Moodle v3.1, and its new Global Search feature in particular? To clarify: while we’ve tested the Attendance plugin under v3.1 and all of the core functionality seems to work fine, we’ve found that instances of the activity are not searchable via v3.1’s Global Search feature. Please see the following screenshot for details, which lists all of the available areas that can searched under v3.1 (note that these settings are available via: Site Administration -> Plugins -> Search -> Manage Global Search):

    http://imgur.com/lWWQByE

    Note also that the above screenshot was taken on a v3.1 system where the Attendance plugin is installed and available. However, as you can see, the Attendance activity is not listed as being available to be searched. Obviously, this is likely to be a significant problem/cause of confusion for users who might want to search for specific instances of the Attendance activity across Moodle.

    I’m not a developer, but my understanding is that mod plugins can be made searchable relatively easily via the addition of a new search class within the plugin’s codebase (located at ../classes/search/activity.php). Please see the following for further details:

    https://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=334938
    https://docs.moodle.org/31/en/Global_search
    https://docs.moodle.org/dev/Search_API

    We really hope this search capability can be added to Attendance as I’m sure it would be a huge benefit to our users (as well as those of other v3.1 systems) and, again, many thanks for all your efforts to develop this plugin and share it with the community.

    Best wishes,
    Lina
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 5:12 AM
    Hi Lina,

    I had thought about adding support but wasn't sure how useful it was going to be. I expected that most people using search would not be using it to find the attendance activity but it's pretty straight-forward to add support. If someone else doesn't beat me to it with a pull request I'll probably get round to it at some point. Thanks.
  • Lina
    Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 10:34 AM
    Hi Dan,
    Thanks for your reply. The attendance activity is really a good idea. We love it and if the teachers are able to search the attendance activity, it will be great.
    I really hope we can have the attendance activity searchable.
    Thanks.
    Best wishes,
    Lina
  • Picture of J W
    Thu, Jul 7, 2016, 2:42 AM
    Just updated to the newest version of Moodle and installed Attendance. On the attendance report tab, I don't see the PLEA totals at the far right (as we used to see). How are those enabled?
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Thu, Jul 7, 2016, 7:28 AM
    Hi J W, the reports in the latest version were rewritten/improved so that the interface should make more sense and the grading is a bit more logical - this does mean that we dropped the individual totals for each user on the report. You can see some of the discussion and the issues that this rewrite resolved in the pull request here:
    https://github.com/danmarsden/moodle-mod_attendance/pull/201
    (and the linked issues mentioned in the pull request.)

    If people really want the individual totals for each user back in the reports we could look at adding them back or putting them into a different report. If you could create a new discussion in the attendance forum on moodle.org with the details on this if would be great to get feedback from more than one person if possible. Thanks!
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