Skip navigation

Access to Moodle for Teaching Assistants

This page reviews basic information on getting access to a Moodle course for Teaching Assistants.

About Teaching Assistants (TAs) in Moodle

Your TA must be listed in SPIRE as a Teaching Assistant in order to have access to your Moodle course. By default, TAs automatically receive access to Moodle in the role of Non-Editing Teacher, which allows them to access student resources and activities, and read and grade student submissions.

If you also need a TA to upload materials and add activities to your Moodle course, see Add Course Designer Role for a TA below.  To allow a TA to manage the Moodle gradebook (not just grade student submissions), see Add Full Gradebook Access for a TA.

Your Graduate TA Needs Access to Moodle

  1. If your TA cannot access your Moodle course, confirm with the Academic Scheduling Representative in your department that the TA is listed in SPIRE as a:
    • Teaching Assistant if your class is a lecture or seminar with no discussion sections/labs.
    • Primary Instructor if your TA is in charge of a separate discussion/lab.
    Note: The process of listing graduate TAs in SPIRE may take three (3) business days or longer. 
  2. Once Moodle is updated with the latest information from SPIRE, your TA will automatically be enrolled in your course as a Non-editing Teacher.
  3. (Optional) You can add permissions for a TA once they are enrolled in a Moodle course:

Your Undergraduate TA Needs Access to Moodle

Undergraduate TAs, some 'unofficial TAs', and undergraduate and graduate students who assist with limited course activities (e.g., grading) receive access to Moodle only after they are listed as Moodle/BB in SPIRE.

  1. Together with your TA, fill out and sign the LMS FERPA Acknowledgment Form (for Undergraduate Teaching Assistants) (pdf, 132k).
    Note: File a form for each undergraduate TA with the Academic Scheduling Representative in your department.
  2. Your Academic Scheduling Representative will work with the Registrar's Office to input your student's information into SPIRE. Undergradate TAs should be listed as Moodle/BB.
    Note: The process of listing undergraduate TAs in SPIRE may take three business (3) days or longer.
  3. Once Moodle is updated with the latest information from SPIRE, your TA's role will change to Non-editing Teacher
  4. (Optional) To allow your TA to upload files, edit pages, and add activities to your Moodle course, see Add Course Designer Role for a TA (below).

Add 'Course Designer' Role for a TA

By default, graduate and undergraduate TAs are enrolled in Moodle Courses as Non-editing teachers. As the name suggests, Non-editing teachers cannot edit Moodle pages; they have the same access as students to post files and contribute to forums and activities, and they can access and grade student submissions, but cannot add or edit resources or activities.

As an instructor, you can expand your TA's abilities yourself. Adding the role of Course Designer for TA's will allow them to upload files, create pages, create and edit Moodle activities, and adjust some course settings. For a comprehensive list of Course Designer and Non-editing Teacher permissions, see Roles in Moodle.

To learn how to add the Course Designer role for a TA watch our video: Add "Course Designer" Role for Your TA (1:03 minutes), or follow the steps below.

  1. In your Moodle course, go to the Settings block and click Users, then Enrolled Users. A list of the people enrolled in your course opens.
  2. Look for your TA's name in the list of enrolled users; If a TA does not appear in the list, see the sections above on how to add them to your Moodle course.
    Tip: To sort the list, click First name, Surname or Email address. In a large class there may be more than one page of users listed.
  3. Under the Roles heading (to the right of the TA's name), click the + (plus button).

    The Assign roles pop-up window opens.
  4. In the Assign roles pop-up, click Course Designer.
    The pop-up closes and the role of Course Designer is added for your TA (in addition to Non-Editing Teacher).
    Select role
  5. (Optional) To remove a role you added, look for the a name in the list of enrolled users, and in the Roles column, click the X after the role you wish to remove.
    Note: You can only remove roles added manually in the course.  You cannot remove roles assigned via SPIRE.
  6. Moodle will ask you to confirm that you wish to remove the role. Click Remove.

Add Full Gradebook Access for a TA

By default, graduate and undergraduate TAs are enrolled in Moodle Courses as Non-editing teachers.  Non-editing teachers can view  student submissions and enter grades in the Moodle gradebook, but cannot set up gradebook categories or calculations and cannot export gradebook data. Adding the role of TA-Manage Gradebook will give a TA full access to the gradebook, comparable to a Teacher's access.

To add the TA-Manage Gradebook role for a TA, watch our video: Add "Course Designer" Role for Your TA (the process is the same, just choose TA-Manage Gradebook instead of Course Designer), or follow these steps:

  1. In your Moodle course, go to the Settings block and click Users, then Enrolled Users. A list of people enrolled in the course opens.
  2. Look for your TA's name in the list of enrolled users; If a TA does not appear in the list, see the sections above on how to add them to your Moodle course.
    Tip: To sort the list, click First name, Surname or Email address.
  3. In the Roles column to the right of the TA's name, click the + (plus button). The Assign roles pop-up window opens.
  4. In the Assign roles pop-up, click TA-Manage Gradebook.
    The pop-up closes and the role of TA-Manage Gradebook is added for your TA (in addition to Non-Editing Teacher).
  5. (Optional) To remove a role you added, look for the user's name in the list of enrolled users, and in the Roles column to the right, click the X after the role you wish to remove.
    Note: You can only remove roles added manually in the course. You cannot remove roles added via SPIRE.
    Remove added role
  6. Moodle will ask you to confirm. Click Remove.

Graduate Students Teaching a Lecture or Seminar

Graduate students teaching a lecture or seminar (not an associated discussion section or lab) are considered Primary Instructors in SPIRE. Beginning in November 2011, Primary Instructors can request a Moodle course in SPIRE and are enrolled in Moodle in the Teacher role.

Note: Graduate students cannot be Primary Instructors for classes numbered 500 and above.

If you are a graduate student teaching a lecture or seminar:

  1. Make sure you are listed as the Primary Instructor for your class in SPIRE.
    If you are not the Primary Instructor, your class will not appear on your list of Moodle-eligible classes in SPIRE. (In SPIRE’s left Menu, go to Faculty Home > Moodle Course Request. The screen Step One: Choose from Eligible Sections will open, listing your Moodle-eligible classes.)
  2. (Optional) To get listed as the Primary Instructor, contact the Academic Scheduling Representative in your department. This person will work with the Registrar’s Office to get SPIRE updated.
    Note: The process of listing Primary Instructors in SPIRE may take three (3) business days or longer.