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This is a tutorial about how to set up your module so student automatically add themselves into a group when they enroll themselves on the module

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This refers to Moodle 3.6 from July 2019 onward

How to allow students to self-enrol on a module and into a given group


Placing students into groups is useful for module administration and for organising activity on your module.  Students can be placed into groups automatically if they are able to self-enrol on a module. 

Example: A Community module is open to both undergraduates and postgraduates but you want some material to be available only to Postgraduates.

A course is taught to students from two different modules together (parent module). Most of the material is for both sets of students, but you'd like the assignments to be visible only to the relevant students taking the relevant module

Here’s how.

Enabling groups in a module

To enable Groups in your course:

  1. Navigate to the Moodle module you want to work in.
  2. Select the Settings/Actions cogwheel icon
  3. Choose Edit Settings
  4. Open the Groups section
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  5. Select either 'Visible groups' or 'Separate groups' (i.e members of the groups can see each other's activity or not).
  6. Click Save and Display

To set up the groups and members (with joining password)

  1. Click the Navigation menu and select  Participants
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  2.  Click the Settings/Actions cogwheel icon 
  3. And click Groups
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  4. Click on the Create group button
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  5. Give the group a name, In our example it would be 'Project Group A'
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  6. Next to the box marked Joining Password click and add in a password (press return to save).  This password is the one used by students to join this group at the module self-enrolment screen.
    Click the "eye" to reveal the detail of the password, if necessary.
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  7. Click on Save changes and the new group will appear in the left-hand column.
  8. Repeat for as many groups as you need.  (You can also set Moodle to generate a number of similarly named groups automatically)

Creating your self-enrolment methods

  1. Click the Actions/Settings cogwheel and select More, then the Users tab
  2. Click Enrolment methods
  3. Click on the Add method Choose.... drop-down box and choose 'Self enrolment'.  You will then be taken to the settings page for the self-enrolment method.

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  4. The only fields you should need to change are:  
    1. Custom instance name.  Enter a name for the enrolment method that will be visible to participants e.g. 'Join this module', 
    2. Joining password.  Even though you may not use it, a password needs to be entered here in addition to the group passwords set in Groups (they have different functions). The Joining and group passwords cannot be the same. This ensures the enrolment key field for module participation shows when participants go to the module to join; participants do not need this password, they only need the group one.  It also prevents people joining the module without being in one of the groups you have created.  Our help page for configuring self-enrolment.
    3. Use group joining password.  Make sure this is set to 'Yes'.  This enables the group passwords previously set to be used as enrolment keys.
  5. Once you have configured your self-enrolment method click on the Add method button at the bottom of the screen to save your changes.

Enrolling on the module into a group

Students can join the module by navigating to it and entering the password set for the group.  In the example below, a group has been created called 'Project Group A' and a password was distributed to PGR participants. There is also a separate self-enrolment option (Enrolment Extra for other users not in that particular group.

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The student, when enrolling, enters the Group password rather than the self-enrolment password and is enrolled and immediately added automatically to Project Group A

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See also:

How do I self-enrol on a module?

How to create a forum with group