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Activities: Group self-selection

Maintained by Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen Pirkka Pyykkönen
Lets students create and select groups.
Lets students create and select groups. Features:
  • Students can create groups, give them a description and set them password protected, if wanted
  • Students can select and join groups
  • Non-editing teachers may be assigned to groups
  • Teacher can export course group list as a csv-file
  • Full compatibility with basic Moodle groups: groups may be created by other means if needed, supports group assignment submissions etc.

(for <=2.1 versions)
The Group selection module allows students to select the group they want to be members of. The first versions of such functionality appeared already for Moodle 1.4. The most recent version has been written by Petr Škoda and Helen Foster with the help of other developers.




Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen
Pirkka Pyykkönen (Lead maintainer)
Picture of Petr Skoda (Totara LMS)
Petr Skoda (Totara LMS): Original author
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  • Just wondering . . .
    Thu, Mar 12, 2015, 12:51 PM
    I havve just installed this on Modle 8.2+ and it will not give me the option to join more than one group.

  • Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen
    Thu, Mar 12, 2015, 9:38 PM
    Hi Derek,

    this plugin only allows users to join a single group per activity. It is however possible to create multiple activities of this type and use a different grouping for each activity or to manually add users to groups from the Groups page to get around this limitation.

    It would not be a difficult task to implement a feature which would let users to join as many groups as specified in settings though.
  • Picture of Daniel Neis Araujo
    Thu, Mar 12, 2015, 10:28 PM
    Please note that some plugins (like assign) may have problems with users that are members of more than one group in same grouping.
  • Just wondering . . .
    Fri, Mar 13, 2015, 3:18 AM
    OK. Thanks Daniel and Pirkka. Here is what I REALLY and looking for.

    I want to have some events with signups. Not uncommon with a blended environment. For this I wanted people to be able to sign up for multiple groups - and actually unsign as well. So there won't be a problem for me with things like assign.

    I tried all the options in the plugins that I could find yesterday. but thy all had a problem one way or another, like not installing on 2.8, requiring a Teacher's name to work etc.

    If the addition of the signup to multiple groups was possible I'd like that. But obviously for Daniel's comment, it would need to be configurable.

  • Picture of Bei Chapman
    Wed, Mar 18, 2015, 3:37 AM
    I am using this plugin 3.0.2 beta (20141215) in our new 2.8.3.

    As a student, I can't add myself into the group by clicking on "becoming member of group xx". I am not part of any groups in the course. The next window keeps asking me to enter a password which I know there is NO password setup for the group (no lock icon).

    Is there something I did wrong, or something wrong with the setting or code?

  • Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen
    Thu, Mar 19, 2015, 10:05 PM
    Hi Bei,

    So it let's you select a group by clicking the "become member"-button and then says that it requires password even when the group has none?

    Is your user enrolled in the course and what role (s)he has (if switched role to student)? Is your course using enrolment keys for groups? Are you absolutely sure that the group has no password set?

  • Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen
    Thu, Mar 19, 2015, 11:06 PM
    Ok I have found one possible solution, if you have used a previous version of this plugin (<=2.1) and then upgraded to the 3.02 version. In older versions there was a feature to set a master password for all groups. This feature has been removed since 3.0 but it still has a field in the database and if it is not null, then password will be asked. I'll release an updated version soon.

    But if you did a clean installation, created a new groupselect activity and still got this bug, please let me know so I can check other possible causes.

  • Picture of Bei Chapman
    Fri, Mar 20, 2015, 4:14 AM
    Hi Pirkka,

    Thanks for your reply. This plugin is upgraded from 2.1beta1 so it is not a clean install for sure. There are some data already associated to it.

    The test case is very straightforward. I have same test case in our production (running 2.6.2 with group self-selection version 2.1beta1 (20111018)) and it works fine. The user is enrolled in the class as a student. The course is not using enrolment keys for groups. And the groups don't have password protected set. However, it fails on "become a member" in our development (running 2.8.3 with group self-selection version 3.0.4 beta - I just upgraded it).

    I don't recall we have set up something like a master password for all groups in the older version. If do, which field in the db that holds it? I am wondering if the plugin upgrade inserts a not-null value into it for us.

    Also, there are a few Oracle-syntax-errors in view.php, particularly the ";" in front of the closing single quote for sql cmd. Once I removed that ";", it works with our Oracle.

    For example:
    ORDER BY groupid ASC;';
    WHERE g.instance_id = ?;',

    Can you remove them in your source code and include them in the new release? BTW when is the next release?

  • Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen
    Fri, Mar 20, 2015, 10:07 PM
    Thanks for your detailed answer and especially for pointing out those Oracle errors. I'll publish a new version next week. The field in question is password in groupselect table. It's probably best that I change the upgrade functionality to remove that field completely and update the code accordingly.

  • Picture of Michael Wuttke
    Fri, Mar 20, 2015, 11:51 PM
    Hello Pirkka,

    I've the same issue with moodle 2.8.5 and the 3.04 beta (20150107) version of the plugin. I also upgrade moodle and the groupselect plugin.

    I've got the following debug error message during a fresh install:

    XMLDB has detected one CHAR NOT NULL column (password) with '' (empty string) as DEFAULT value. This type of columns must have one meaningful DEFAULT declared or none (NULL). XMLDB have fixed it automatically changing it to none (NULL). The process will continue ok and proper defaults will be created accordingly with each DB requirements. Please fix it in source (XML and/or upgrade script) to avoid this message to be displayed.

    line 1874 of /lib/datalib.php: call to debugging()
    line 352 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_object.php: call to xmldb_debug()
    line 255 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_field.php: call to xmldb_object->debug()
    line 359 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_field.php: call to xmldb_field->setDefault()
    line 543 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_table.php: call to xmldb_field->arr2xmldb_field()
    line 259 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_structure.php: call to xmldb_table->arr2xmldb_table()
    line 172 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_file.php: call to xmldb_structure->arr2xmldb_structure()
    line 153 of /lib/xmldb/xmldb_file.php: call to xmldb_file->arr2xmldb_structure()
    line 341 of /lib/ddl/database_manager.php: call to xmldb_file->loadXMLStructure()
    line 362 of /lib/ddl/database_manager.php: call to database_manager->load_xmldb_file()
    line 667 of /lib/upgradelib.php: call to database_manager->install_from_xmldb_file()
    line 420 of /lib/upgradelib.php: call to upgrade_plugins_modules()
    line 1626 of /lib/upgradelib.php: call to upgrade_plugins()
    line 434 of /admin/index.php: call to upgrade_noncore()

    Maybe it will help you to fix the error.

  • Picture of Bei Chapman
    Wed, Mar 25, 2015, 3:05 AM
    Hi Pirkka,

    That would be great if you can fix it from the source. I need the new version of this plugin asap for our Moodle 2.8.3 upgrade. Please keep me updated.

    That "NULL" vs. '' (empty string) in the password field is what I have guessed too. Oracle is famous for being picky. Thanks Michael for bringing more info on it.

  • Picture of Pirkka Pyykkönen
    Thu, Mar 26, 2015, 12:32 AM
    Hi all,

    sorry for late response. I made the fixes and pushed them to the project GitHub repository:

    I'd appreciate if you Bei could confirm if it works now (I don't have an Oracle db) . I'll publish an official version here by the end of this week.

  • Picture of Bei Chapman
    Fri, Mar 27, 2015, 2:38 AM
    Hi Pirkka,

    I have upgraded mine to 3.0.5 beta (in Moodle 2.8.3 with Oracle DB as the back end db), and very glad to tell you that it is working perfectly now, no oracle errors and no password hunting any more.

    Thank you for your hard work.
  • Picture of Michael Wuttke
    Fri, Mar 27, 2015, 3:50 AM
    Hello Pirkka,

    also from me many thanks to you for your work. I also tested the plugin version 3.0.5 beta with moodle 2.8.5 and postgresql, and it works as expected. wink

    Just one thing: In the mod_form.php I think will change the mforms for studentcancreate, studentcansetdesc & deleteemptygroups from true to false. Because I don't want to disconcert our teachers/lecturers. wink

    Thanks a lot & Greatings,
  • Picture of Bei Chapman
    Fri, Mar 27, 2015, 9:34 PM
    Yes I will backup Michael's recommendation on the mforms as well.

    There is another small point that I have to change for my system. I modified style.css with the following:

    .mod_groupselect .edit, .text_to_html, td {
    word-wrap:break-word !important;
    /*word-break: break-all !important;*/

    I am not sure why you chose "word-break: break-all" for td. It creates text wrapping in the word for all columns in the system (e.g. report logs). Maybe you have some reason?

    Thanks again.
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