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Group types

Hasmeeta Shukla's profile picture
Posts: 25

12 March 2009, 5:35 PM

Hi there,

I am unclear about the rationale between the different group types.  I can understand why you have the different means of accessing the groups, ie controlled, request membership, open membership and invite only.  This way the users can decide who can be part of the group, ie it can be a select group of users or open to whoever is interested. 

However, I am having difficulty in working out the reasoning behind subtle differences in the properties of the group types.  It seems that the controlled groups have all the different features and if these were available in all the group types, then the users could chose whether they use them or not.

We have a large number of students and to keep the student-centred ethos we have chosen to use the request membership or open membership group types.  But, we have now discovered that views can only be submitted for assessment in the  controlled group, and the tutor status is only available in that group type also.

Has anyone else encountered this issue and can anyone help with the rationale please?

Many thanks


Heinz Krettek's profile picture
Posts: 480

13 March 2009, 3:18 AM

Hi Hasmeeta,

greetings from Germany. I hope that my english is good enough to explain the things Wink

It´s right that the group type offer different ways for the users to join a group. To start coolaborative work and engage the students to work with mahara the "request membership" group are my preferred group types. The new Mahara 1.1 allows to give diverse users the admin role (tutor). This is a feature in all group types.

As far as i know about it the only difference between the "normal" groups and the controlled group is the possibility to submit a view for assessment. Mahara frezes the view until the tutor gives it free. Please take care, that the users have anyway the possibility to modify some artefacts (e.g. blogposting) altho the view has been submitted Cool

In my humble opinion  Mahara is a tool for users, a tool to work with their portfolio. The assessment is not the main reason and therefore are the controlled groups not so fundamental.

I use the new group stuff for my daily work and like the new established group features (view area, file area). This is great to do all sort of kooperative learning. 

Hope that helps


Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

14 March 2009, 6:07 AM

Hi Hasmeeta - we also spotted this subtlety when planning the improved groups work in Mahara 1.1, and in 1.1 there is the architecture in  place to split the "group type" (the behaviour it has) from the "join type". Although, it's still the case in 1.1 that you can't create a non-controlled group with tutors. It wouldn't take much effort to split things up.
Hasmeeta Shukla's profile picture
Posts: 25

15 March 2009, 4:27 PM

Hello Heinz and Nigel,

Thank you both for clarifying this for me:-)  I was wondering if  I was missing something fundamental in my understanding of the philosophy undepinning 'mahara'.

Nigel, if the group behaviour and group types can be separated, it will probably be very useful longterm as the software develops further.  However, if you can have tutor status in the non-controlled groups in 1.1, thats great, but for what we are doing, we would like the students to be able to submit views for assessment as well.  Would that be possible?

Many thanks


Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

15 March 2009, 5:50 PM

Hi - the 'tutor' role and submitting views for assessment are part of the same set of functionality for groups, by the way.. if you have one then you have the other Wink

I have filed a feature request about splitting them up. I'm not that willing to make the change on the 1.1 branch, but I know that you're on MyPortfolio, so if you lean on Richard Wyles maybe he can arrange for us to do it (MyPortfolio is being upgraded to 1.1 soon).

Hasmeeta Shukla's profile picture
Posts: 25

15 March 2009, 6:40 PM

Well, thats wonderfulSmile  If 1.1 has the tutor status and the ability to submit views for assessments in all the groups, than we are happy!!  Role on 1.1 upgrage in MyPortfolio.

Thanks Nigel!

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