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Attendance in Moodle

Tracking attendance in Moodle is a great student success tool because it allows students to monitor their own attendance.

Set up Attendance

From the Gear icon at the upper right of your course page, choose Turn editing on or Press the Turn editing on button.

Turn Editing On

Go to the section on your course page where you want the Attendance module to appear. On the far right, click Add an activity or resource.

Click Attendance and click Add.

Add a New Attendance

Add a Name for the Attendance activity, give it a brief description like “Mondays Lab Session” and then tick the box to display this on the course page.

Scroll down to Grade. If you don’t want attendance included, choose None. Or, you can set the number of points you want attendance to be worth. Later in the setup, you can then indicate how many points will be deducted for each absence or late occurance. When you’re done, click Save and display. (If you clicked Save and return, you can navigate back to Attendance by clicking it on your course page.)

Add A Session

On the next screen, click add session. Then do the following:
Fill in the date of the first class meeting. Click the button to “repeat the session above as follows.”. This may be hidden in the Multiple Sessions section. Place check marks next to the days your class meets (even if it just one day). For a fully online course, just check Monday. Fill in the last day your class meets. Click Add.

Add A Session in Attendance

You’ll now see all your class sessions. You may find it easiest to have them displayed by Week or Day. You can make that change at the upper right. To take attendance, click on the right arrow to the right of the class meeting.
To see the number of absences a student has, click on any attendance that has been taken.

To quickly mark all students present, click P at the top of the list. To mark students individually, click on the appropriate circle. A key to the abbreviations appears at the bottom left of the screen. When you finish, click Save attendance. You can go back into a day’s attendance at any time, make changes, and save again.

Optional: If you would like to change the status options displayed, from the main attendance page, click Status set at the top. Here, you can hide or delete options you don’t use, add new options, or reorder them. The point values here won’t matter unless you set attendance to be part of the grade. Click Update when you’re done.

Status Set

To see the number of absences a student has, click on any attendance that has been taken.

Click the name of the student.

The student’s attendance history will display.

The number of absences can be determined either by counting them manually or derived from the statistics at the bottom of the page (absence = -2 points, lateness = -1).

Group Attendance Setup

Now that your attendance is setup for your course, you can restrict it to specific lab groups or cohorts within Moodle. First you will need to add the enrolled users to a group within Moodle. If you need here be sure to check out this guide here for that.

Once your groups are created, edit your Attendance activity and scroll down to Common Module Settings.

Group Settings

In here you need to change Group Mode from No Group to Seperate or Visible – the ? icon on the left hand side explains the difference between each.

No groups – There are no groups. In collaborative spaces such as Forums or Wikis, all class members can participates in the activity.

Visible Groups – Group members interact with their own group, but can also view work from other groups (e.g, students can read, but not reply to another group’s Forum posts).

Separate Groups – Group members can only see activity made within their own group.

Once you have chosen your desired setting , Save changes to the activity.

Visible Groups

Now when you go to take Attendance you can take it for the whole class ie a Lecture based scenario where everyone is present or you can choose a specific group – linked to a Lab/Tutorial based attendance session.


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