Group functionality

Document created by Mark Van de Velde on Jan 31, 2018Last modified by Marcus de Rijk on Feb 20, 2018
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Groups and group work are an important part of pedagogy design. The ability to create groups and designate learning materials or assessments to a set of groups or an individual group is a key requirement for many teachers.


Groups within course sections for a large cohort of students (100+) requires a more refined set of controls to assist teachers in managing their course. In some cases teachers are only responsible for an individual course section, meaning the current group creation and management tools are inappropriate in some cases.

Teachers also want to control what student groups have access to, as groups often work on different problems. Publishing to groups can help meet this requirement.


None of these ideas are new to the Canvas community, but together they can make a larger impact to how Canvas can be used. A vote for this, is a vote for Canvas to make group functions a priority, rather than an individual set up smaller updates.


Recommended features:

  1. The creation of groups should be possible through a single course section or selection of sections for students in a course. It should be possible to select students manually from the given course section/s as well as having them added randomly as currently possible. Currently its only possible automate the creation of groups across all sections, rather than a select set of Course Sections, as described here:
  2. The creation or editing of groups via a csv or excel file should be available. It should be possible to first: download a simple list of all students in the course with the section and groups they already belong to listed; then, upload a modified list with new groups if needed.

  3. An option to publish any content item (modules/pages etc) to a selected group(s) should be available. The content should be locked so that students are not able to edit or delete it. This would allow teachers to design learning paths to be group specific.


Business Impact

Expanding group creation options and control of content will assist in group management for larger institutions. Expanding the publishing options to include group only content, allows for the opportunity to design more complex learning paths. 



Additional Resources

For recommendation 1: 
(This idea was completed, however still missed the point of the original idea.) (Open for voting)

For recommendation 2: (Open for voting)

For recommendation 3: (Open for voting) (Open for Voting)



(Here is the fun part! Who wants this and why?)


Who (@ yourself)Vote ForVote AgainstNotes
Mark Van de VeldeYesMain sponsor.
Stuart RyanYes
Marcus de RijkYes



This also appears in the APAC Areas of Priority