Creating a Course Website

How to create a course website using the communities module

  • Note that you must create a course via Manage Courses before you can create a course community (please see here for more information).

  • From the main menu, click on the Communities tab.

  • Click 'Create a Community' and then click on 'Courses, etc.' in the Official Communities section.

  • Fill in the required information, noting the following:

  • Community Name: Pick a descriptive but concise name. This will display on the list of communities and will be used if a user searches for a community.

  • Community Keywords: These will not be visible to users but will be applied when someone searches for an existing community.

  • Community Description: This will be displayed to any user who searches for or tries to access the community.

  • Community Shortname: This will be part of the community url. It must be lower-case, less than 20 characters, and include only letters, numbers, underscore or period. After this is set there is no user interface to change the url so pick carefully! For the purposes of uniformity you may wish to discuss naming conventions with anyone else who may be creating course websites within your organisation.

  • Community Type: Select ‘Course Website’ from the dropdown menu.

  • Community Pages: When you select Course Website a list of default pages will appear (see detail regarding each page below) and when the course website is created these pages will be visible to users. (If you'd like to have a course website template that allows admin. users to deselect or later hide templated pages you'll need help from a developer to make a change in the database.)

  • Community Courses: Select the appropriate course to link this community to.

    • Course websites can only be associated with one course during the build process. If you have a use case where two or more courses wish to share a course website you can build a course website for one of the courses and then assign the url of the course website to the other course(s) through the Course Content > Course Setup > External URL field. Note that any automatically populated information in the course website, including events, gradebook, curriculum objectives, etc. will only reflect the course the website is directly built from. The use case for this approach might be a course that is presented to learners as a single, year-long experience, but for the purposes of the registrar's office must be recorded as two courses.

  • Course Curriculum Periods: Select the appropriate curriculum period for this course website. If only one curriculum period exists for a course, it will automatically be selected.

  • Community Permissions: Use these options to control access to the course website.

  • Click 'Create'.\

  • If you get an error saying you must specify a Community Type but don't have the option to do so on the screen, you are likely working in a second organisation (e.g., you're working in postgraduate medicine and the first organisation in your installation was undergraduate medicine). When a second organisation is created through the user interface, community types are not automatically copied into the new organisation. A developer can copy the community types for you and you'll be able to use communities properly.

  • Faculty directors, and curriculum and program coordinators listed in the course contacts section of a course will automatically be made administrators of the course website community.

Templated Pages

The following pages are included in the default course website community template:


Add any background information as needed. Turn on additional information to populate the page with announcements, upcoming events, and community history (e.g., new members joining). Click Save when done. (Feb. 12, 2018: Note that the display of announcements and events is currently not working and only community history will show up.)

Course Calendar

This page displays learning events scheduled in the course via Manage Events (change the date range from day, month, week, year etc. to change your view). This page was updated in Elentra ME 1.21 so that learners enrolled in a course will see only the events they are an audience member of instead of all events for a course.

You can add customized text to the top of this page. If you add free text, click 'Save' when done.

Note that users in the community who also have edit abilities in the associated learning events can click on an event, scroll down the page and click Director View/Staff View/Teacher View in the left sidebar and be taken to the event page to edit it if necessary.


This page will show all existing units for the course and a user can click on a unit name to view the unit details page where the unit details, events, resources, and tags are displayed.


You can add customized text to this page. Click 'Save' when done.

Course Aims

You can add customized text to this page. Click 'Save' when done.

Learning Objectives

You can add customized text to the top of this page; by default it displays the curriculum tag sets assigned to the course through the Curriculum Tags tab under Admin > Manage Courses. If you add text, click 'Save' when done.

  • Viewing Contextually Linked Tags on A Course Website

    If you have assigned curriculum tags to a course and contextually linked them to other curriculum tag sets, users will optionally be able to expand each contextually linked objective to see its connections. (Note, this page does not display linkages made in Admin > Manage Curriculum.)

MCC Presentations

You can add customized text to the top of this page; by default it displays the Clinical Learning Objectives assigned to the course through the Content tab under Manage Courses. If you add text, click 'Save' when done.

Teaching Strategies

You can add customized text to this page. Click 'Save' when done.

Assessment Strategies

You can add customized text to this page. Click 'Save' when done.


You can add customized text to the top of this page. If you add text, click 'Save' when done.

If you added resources to a course when you created it via Manage Courses, those resources will not automatically populate this page.

Expectations of Students

You can add customized text to this page. Click 'Save' when done.

Expectations of Faculty

You can add customized text to this page. Click 'Save' when done.


This optional page can be used to provide users with a read-only overview of the gradebook assessments for the course. (When gradebook assessments are created administrators can optionally flag them to be displayed on this page.)

The information displayed includes the following:

  • assessment title and description (optional input),

  • weight towards the course total,

  • due date (if provided),

  • grade release date (e.g. when learners can see grades in My Gradebook) (if provided), and

  • drop box (this provide learners with a link to go to the dropbox assignment).

Manage Notices

This optional page will provide course contacts like course directors (who are faculty:director users), curriculum coordinators (who are staff:admin users) and program coordinators (who are staff:pcoordinator users) an easy way to send notices to the course audience directly from the course website.

When adding notices from a course website, the audience filter will be preset to the course.

Notices created will still display to learners in the Elentra ME Message Centre on their dashboard. (They will not display to learners on the course website.)


More information coming soon. You will need developer help to add this page to your course website template.

Pulls in any curriculum tags assigned to the course and that belong to a tag set named "EPAs".


More information coming soon. You will need developer help to add this page to your course website template.

Pulls in all sites assigned to the course and used in either the course logbook or a rotation schedule.

Editing Course Setup Information from the Course Website

When reviewing a course website, an administrator may notice that some pre-populated information is incorrect. Pre-populated information (e.g., curriculum tags, director's message, etc.) is coming from the course setup information accessed via Admin > Manage Courses.

To quickly access the Admin Courses menu from a course website, look in the left sidebar and click the "Edit Course" link in the "This Community" box.

Adding content to pages

  • Once a course community or website is created, users who are designated as Community Administrators can manage the pages just like any other community. When viewing a course website, switch to Administrator view if necessary, and then look for the Admin Center box on the sidebar. Click Manage Pages to adjust content, reorder pages, or add a new page. For quick editing access, click the Edit Page button from any community page at any point.

How to manage community, community members, and community reports in a course website

When you build a course website and associate it with a course, some individuals listed on the course contacts page (e.g., course director, curriculum coordinator) will automatically be made administrators of the course website. As admins. they will be able to edit page content, add additional pages, etc.

There is a database setting to control whether you'd like to grant course website administrator access to Associated Faculty (listed on the Course Setup tab) (setting = course_website_associated_faculty_admins). Remember that those with Administrator permissions on a community, regardless of their group:role permissions in an organization, can edit pages in the community and control community settings and permissions.

The audience of a course (set from the Course Enrolment section on a Course Setup page) can automatically be made members of the affiliated course website. Course audience members will display under a separate tab when viewing community members so you can easily distinguish who has joined a course website another way. Even if you have auto-enrolment enabled, remember to make sure that the community permissions you configure for course websites will allow learners to join (i.e., use group registration and set the groups to faculty, staff, and the appropriate cohort of learners). Although learners are listed under the Course Audience tab, they usually still have to 'click to join' a course website and view all content.

There is a database setting to control whether you'd like a course enrolment to automatically be made members of the course website/community (setting = course_website_autoenroll_audience)

Additionally, you can turn this feature on or off on a per course basis through the database. Speak to a developer if this is something you require.

Managing additional members as well as permission settings, statistics and details is like other communities so please see the Communities help section for more detail.

By default learners have the ability to leave a course website community they have been added to or have joined. If you'd like to prevent learners from leaving course website communities, there is a database setting option you can use (community_allow_leave_community). If you switch this setting the 'leave community' link will be hidden from course websites so members cannot leave.

Community Reports

Community Reports is a tool that allows you to review which community members have viewed pages, taken specific actions, etc.

  • From the Admin Centre, click 'Community Reports'.

  • Click on 'Select Filter' and select the appropriate filter (member, module type, page, action).

  • Click the checkbox beside the appropriate member/module/page/action and click 'Apply'. You can select filters from different filter types to further refine your results.

  • To delete a filter, click the small x beside it.

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