Take Attendance in Moodle

The Attendance tool in Moodle is a simple way to enter attendance records and share them with your students. It is one of the easiest tools to setup in Moodle, especially if you have ever created a recurring meeting in Outlook or Google Calendar.

Special Tip: The Attendance tool is designed to let you create graded events in your class, and enter feedback and grades for those events that are cumulatively graded. Some faculty repurpose this activity for activities besides attendance, like participation, presentations, or daily quizzes/writing assignments. You can easily repurpose Attendance by naming it something else between Steps 4 and 5, and using the Status Set tab to change the measurement before beginning Part 2 of this article. 

Part 1: Setting up Attendance

1.) In the top-left side of the header, click the green pencil icon to turn editing on

An image of the gear icon expanded, which has been labeled 1, and turn editing on has been labeled 2.

2.) Click the 'Add an activity or resource' link in the section you'd like to build your assignment in

An image of the add an activity or resource link, which has been circled.

  • It is recommend to include it in the top Section of your course (near the News Forum if you're using it).

3.) In the 'Add an activity or resource' page, select 'Attendance'

image showing the location of attendance activity

4.) Enter the 'Grade' and 'Common module settings'

An image of the grade section, with scale labeled 1 and availability labeled 2.

From Moodle:

  1. Select the type of grading used for this activity. If 'scale' is chosen, you can then choose the scale from the scale drop-down. If using point grading, you can enter the maximum grade available for this activity.
  2. If the availiablity is set to 'show on course page,' the activity or resource is available to students (subject to any access restrictions which may be set). If the availability is set to 'hide from students,' the activity or resource is only available to users with permission to view hidden activities (by default, users with the role of teacher or non-editing teacher).

5.) Click the 'Save and display' button

An image of the save and display button, which has been circled.

6.) On the next page, click the 'Add session' tab

An image of the add session link, which has been circled.

7.) Select the settings under 'Add session'

An image of the settings under add session, with 1 as type, 2 as date, 3 as time, and 4 as description.

This can look a little confusing at first, but it is very similar to the process of setting up a recurring meeting in Outlook or Google Calendar.
Here is what the settings mean:

  1. Type: This option will only be different if you're using Groups in your course. Otherwise it's fine the way it is.
  2. Date: This is the first day your class will meet.
  3. Time: How long each class is (the Attendance module will automatically populate each class session with the date and time you meet).
  4. Description: You also have the option to enter a description, but this is not necessary if you're setting up course attendance. I only recommend using it if you are creating a session for a special event.

8.) Select the settings under 'Multiple sessions'

An image of settings under Multiple sessions, with 1 as repeat on, 2 as repeat every, and 3 as repeat until.

From Moodle:
This function allows you to create multiple sessions in one simple step. The sessions begin on the date of the base session and continue until the 'repeat until' date.

1. Repeat on: Select the days of the week when your class will meet (for example, Monday/Wednesday/Friday).
2. Repeat every: This allows for a frequency setting. If your class will meet every week, select . If it will meet every other week, select 2. If it will meet every third week, select 3.
3. Repeat until: Select the last day of class (the last day you want to take attendance).

9.) Click the 'Add' button

An image of the add button, which has been circled.

Part 2: Recording Attendance

Special Tip: Sessions are defaulted to use the PLEA model for entering student attendance (Present (2 points), Late (1 point), Excused (1 point), Absent (0 points)). If you want to change these, you can do so in the Status Set tab. If you want to change this model, you must do so before creating your sessions.

You will need to open the Attendance activity in your course first.

1.) Click the 'Sessions' tab

An image with the sessions option circled.

Available Actions:

An image of available actions.

  • Triangle: Clicking the black triangle will allow you to take attendance.
  • Gear: Clicking the gear icon will allow you to edit the session.
  • Trash: Clicking the trash can will delete the session.

2.) Click the triangle

An image of actions, with the triangle circled.

3.) Select the appropriate attendance marker

An image of attendance options, with 1 as view mode, 2 as attendance markers, 3 as remarks, and 4 as the student's name.

  1. Most instructors prefer to leave the mode as a sorted list. Switching your View Mode to 'Sorted Grid' will display all of your students in a grid, with their pictures prominently displayed.
  2. Enter your Attendance here. The default setting is 'PLEA,' which stands for Present, Late, Excused, Absent.
  3. Any remarks you enter here can be viewed by your students. They will have to open the Attendance activity in your course to see them.
  4. Clicking a student's name will load their individual Attendance report.

4.) Click the 'Save attendance' button

The save attendance button, which has been circled.

100% helpful - 1 review


Article ID: 78706
Tue 5/21/19 11:27 AM
Mon 3/28/22 9:17 AM
Internal or External