[Assignments] Assign to by Group for Individual Assignment

This idea was submitted previously and archived (see below). I would also request the same thing. For individual assignments, I would like to be able to "Assign to" by Group. I often divide the class into groups with varying discussion assignments or assignment due dates, yet these are individual assignments. I teach large classes, so it is too much work to type in individual names repeatedly.


Assign to" Student Groups for Individual Assessment


I want to be able to create Groups based on their modification or need and assign it to that group.Currently we have teachers who have to type in a LOT of student names when it's a modified assignment. Being able to pre-create groups with those students in them and assign or exclude that group would save a lot of time.

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Community Member

When grading groups, it would be nice to have multiple grade entry boxes.  One that acts as it currently does, in that it allows the same grade to post to each student in the group, but then add a check box to override and enter individual grades for each student in the group for a submission.

I realize this can be accomplished by setting the "Assign Grades to Each Student Individually" option under group settings of the assignment, but once this is done, then you no longer have the option to set all grades the same for all group members.

Community Member

This is so so so important and it is amazing to me that --five years on-- it has not been implemented.  PLEASE make this a priority.

Community Explorer

Yes, please!

We desperately need this functionality!

Community Novice

This is an absolutely important function that is still missing after 5 years of discussions!

I have two sections of students in my class, and the university does not allow us to make any changes to sections. For each section, however, I have to manually divide the students into A and B groups. Each group will perform the lab session at a different date and will therefore have their own due date for lab report and homework submission. Without being able to define the group for individual homework submission, I have manually add due date for over 50 students for each homework and lab report—that is so painful and so unnecessary. 

Having this function will be a huge help!!!

Community Champion

@StoneChen, I agree we need some solution.  

@JeffConner shared a workaround on a different forum.  Differentiate Assignments - Instructure Community (canvaslms.com). Search on the page for the term clickpaste to find it.  I recommend you watch his screencast so you'll see how to install and use it.

ClickPaste allows you to copy the all the group member names from a spreadsheet (or document) you've created and paste them into the "assign to" area.  After clicking the ClickPaste button, it pastes them as keystrokes, simulating you typing them in. You can export your gradebook to get a list of names to work with in Excel, moving them into their groups, ready to copy and "clickpaste".  I tried it myself and it worked. 

ClickPaste is only for Windows computers.  Another post had the idea of using a macro recorder where you record yourself typing in all the names with a reusable macro.

Canvas, maybe you could change the way Assign to's work to allow simple pasting of a list of student names?  That would make this workaround simpler.

Community Member

Can there be an option under group assignments to have individual submissions rather than group submissions only? The option exists to assign group grades individually, but the software assumes that the submission (i.e. file upload) is the same for everyone in the group. There are many types of group projects. I often have individual and group components to group projects. The group self-signup feature is useful for getting students in teams. The group assignment feature is useful when those groups have different due dates. But not all submissions are group submissions. For example, some students are assigned to write an individual reflection on a guest speaker for a given day. Other students will write their reflection on a different speaker on a different day. It helps to put students in groups based on which speaker they are assigned to so they can be assigned different due dates. But the work they submit is not group work, it is individual work. When I do this using the current features, each student can see the submissions of others in their group and it appears as though they've completed the assignment even if they haven't. On my end, it shows up like multiple versions of the same assignment were submitted (one version per student). The backend is manageable, but not ideal for me. But for my students it is very confusing.

Community Explorer

For teachers to differentiate instruction, allowing them to create and edit groups (e.g., reading or math groups) would be helpful. Unfortunately, in the current setup, that also means they could edit cross-listed courses.

Community Explorer

We don't allow teacher to create and manage sections because they could potentially cause problems with courses we script to cross list. But for K12, the ability to assign by teacher-created sections is essential to differentiation. These are not group assignments.

Community Participant

I was told by Canvas support that the only way to use "groups" for differentiating assignments would be to use a graded Discussion. You can assign discussions to groups, and students can link or upload their work. The uploaded document would likely be available to all in the group, but if students link to documents from their Google Drive, they could share only with the teacher. Of course then the linked work won't show up in speedgrader, and you would be dealing with all of the "sharing" issues that shouldn't be necessary in Canvas.   It is an option--not a great one-- but it can work in certain circumstances.

I understand that Canvas student groups were not designed to be used for differentiated assignments, but another option needs to be available. Using sections does not work when integrated with the SIS. 

Community Novice


We have courses that have non-sequential simultaneous experiments for many different student groups.

I need the ability to assign student groups (up to 45 of them) their own quizzes and assignments with due dates that differ from the rest. 

At the moment, the ability does not exist in CANVAS - so we just leave quizzes and assignments open for a whole semester to every group.  This can cause confusion.

Please consider providing multi assignment capability per student group..

BTW, we love and use CANVAS intensely.  We have built 5 new laboratory courses around your platform.