#MoodleTip – Automatically notify students about new resources in your course

September 19th, 2015

In a recent post on Moodle forums Mary Cooch the Community Educator at Moodle, has posted a nice tip with whole community about notifying the students in a course about new resources.

Often in Moodle forums many new Moodlers ask questions like: Is there a way students can be notified automatically when a new file is uploaded to their course?’

The answer is to use the News Forum for circulating all announcements related to course, however it requires that all students should be subscribed to the News Forum and so should receive notification of this.

The only problem in the above approach is that the teacher should not forget to post the announcement in the News forum, it just not happen automatically.

The other way of doing the same thing is by using the Event Monitoring which is available since Moodle 2.8 onwards. With this, students are automatically notified of all new items added to the course – not just uploaded files.

Here’s how to set it up:

  • Event monitoring needs to be enabled on your site from Site administration >Reports >Event monitoring rules. (The admin should check first that this won’t have any detrimental effect on performance.)
  • The admin must then give students the permission to subscribe to rules by going to Site administration > Users >Permissions > Student and editing the student role so that the capability tool/monitor:subscribe is set to ‘Allow’. (The admin should think first about any possible consequences with enabling this.)
  • The course teacher then goes to Course administration >Reports > Event monitoring rules and clicks to add a new rule.
  • This rule might be called something like ‘New items in History 101’. The area to monitor is ‘core’ and the event to monitor is ‘course module created’.
  • The ‘Notification message’ allows you create the message that the students will receive whenever a new item is added to the course. Using placeholders (click the question mark icon for suggestions ) you can phrase your message – for example:

  • The student needs then to know that they have to subscribe to this ‘rule’ by going to the user menu top right, clicking on the Preferences page and then clicking the (new) link ‘Event monitoring rules’. When they select their course, they should see the rule and be able to subscribe to it by clicking the +plus sign on the right:

  •   The next time the teacher adds something to the course (for example uploading a file) the student will be notified.

Read the original forum thread here: https://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=320197#p1284593

  • Melanie Dillmon

    This is great information! Very useful. Thank you. I do have a question: I there a way to notify students of an approaching deadline using this method?

    Also, I am using this LMS for my company, and they obtain a cert for training every year. Is it possible to set up a notification that comes to them 11 months after they complete their certification, to let them know it will expire soon?

    • Hi Melanie,
      Thanks for your appreciation. Regarding your questions:
      I am afraid that its not possible using event monitoring however you can use the Event reminder plugin (https://moodle.org/plugins/local_reminders) for sending the notifications.

      let me know if it doesn’t solves your problem.