Tutor and assessor questions & answers

Questions and answers for staff working with group work and with individual work. For step-through guidance for staff, please see Guides For Particular Modules.

On this page:

In the case of group work, how do I lock a group - stop it from being editable but keep it viewable - at the deadline?

Assuming students have a Member role in their Group (i.e. they're not Administrators), then a staff Group Administrator should do the following to ensure that the Group pages will cease to be editable at that date and time, but the Members can continue to view and present their work:

  1. Go to the Group's About Page (by clicking the Group name wherever it appears as a link).
  2. Click Settings; a page of Group settings displays.
  3. Scroll down to the Editability section of the settings.
  4. Check, and if necessary edit, the End Date settings to reflect your deadline.
  5. If you make change, click Save Group (and you may wish to double check again).

Top of page

In the case of students submitting individual work, how can I apply a deadline to the group accepting submissions?

The short answer is you can't - but what you can do is check the time and date of submission, which helpfully appears adjacent to every submission in the Submissions To This Group section of the group's About page.

Top of page

I need to give more assessors access to a group.

Digital Education can in theory do this using a spreadsheet, but in practice we find that other assessors have never logged into MyPortfolio before, so the spreadsheet cannot find their accounts.

For this reason we ask the Group Administrators remaining after the deadline to liaise with other assessors and give them access to the group as follows:

  1. Ensure other assessors have logged into MyPortfolio at least once, even if very briefly. That way their accounts are created and can be added.
  2. From the group's front page, somebody with a group Administrator role selects the link to Members (e.g. on the group's menu bar); the Members page displays.
  3. If the group was set up as Controlled (and if not, skip down a few points to 'If the group wasn't set up to be Controlled) then the Administrator has the option to Add Many Users At Once (see screenshot) - click this link; the Add Members page displays.
  4. Type the name (not the user ID) in the Search box to identify members (and note that they need to have logged into MyPortfolio at least once before.
  5. Click their names and add them from the Potential Members column to the Users To Be Added column.
  6. When you are ready, click Submit.
  7. If the group wasn't set up as Controlled, then the Group Administrator will not be able to add members in this way. Instead, click Send Multiple Invitations (see screenshot) and proceed as outlined above (for Add Many Users At Once). The assessor will then need to accept the invitation to join the group.


I'm an assessor - how can I find groups whose work I need to mark?

Assuming you have been given access to the group (see above):

  1. In a web browser go to https://myportfolio.ucl.ac.uk
  2. Log in with your ISD user ID (the one you use for Moodle); the Dashboard displays.
  3. To the right is a list of links to Groups you’re associated with; to enter a Group space click on its title here.
  4. Once inside, hopefully students have designed their front page so that you can easily find your way around the space.
  5. You can also navigate with the horizontal row of links below the Group name.

Students have access to their Group space during the marking period, but will not be able to edit it. This means that if you leave feedback on any given page, then depending on their settings, they will be able to see it.

Top of page

What permissions or role should markers be given in MyPortfolio?

They will probably need a Group Administrator role, which enables them to see all Pages, all Content, and the Reports. If you don't have this role, contact the department's teaching administrator. 

Top of page

How can I see who is in the Group?

Use the horizontal row of tabs under the Group name to navigate to Members - there you will find a list of contributors, along with other group Administrators (at the time of assessment these should be staff, not students) and possibly ELE staff.

Top of page

How can I find my way round the Group space?

The fundamental thing to remember that everything you assess on MyPortfolio will be within one or more Pages (so you may not need to access Files - these are just the raw materials).

Ideally students have created a group About Page (i.e. the landing page when you click on a link to the Group) which introduces you to the space and signposts you to its various parts. However, this may have been under-emphasised and not particularly supported - in other words not an explicit requirement.

Some scenarios follow.

What if you arrive on the group front page but it's empty?

In this case, use the horizontal menu of tabs under the Group name to navigate to Pages - there you will find a link to one or more web pages of students' work. The Weekly Logs can be accessed via the Forums tab.

What if you are on a Page but can't see how to get back to the Group's front page?

As shown on the screenshot below, you can use any of the following:

  • The Back button, top right of the screen. Caveat - be careful not to click the Edit button by mistake and if you do that, then click Cancel to return.
  • The Groups link on the Mahara menu.
  • The Group's name, wherever it appears as a link.


Top of page

Is there a way to 'skim read' audiovisual material by increasing the playback speed?

If the media is on YouTube, then you can play at x1.5 or x2 as follows:

  1. Enable the YouTube html player at http://www.youtube.com/html5 (click the Request the html5 player link, that should do it.)
  2. Then go to (or refresh) the page containing the video.
  3. Then click that video's Settings icon (a small cog, bottom right); you'll see a setting for speed, which you can change.

If you find ways to change the playback speed in other media, let us know.

Top of page

What can students see while I'm marking?

Students continue to be able to view their group's MyPortfolio space, but cannot edit it.

This means that if you comment on Pages (using the Place feedback link), students will be able to see this, for example.

Top of page

How can I give feedback or comments on a Page?

You may have agreed to give feedback outside MyPortfolio. If not, read on.

The Place feedback link which is usually present at the bottom of each Page allows viewers to leave comments under that Page. You can use this to give feedback on work without actually editing it. Here's how it works. 

Unless the Page's creator has set the Page not to accept Feedback (see its Sharing settings) then anybody who can see the Page can place Feedback. To do this, click the Place feedback link, type or attach comments, and then click the Place feedback button to post it under the Page.

What can you include in feedback? You can type text, insert links and also attach a file.

Who can see the feedback? The principle is that Page owners also own the Feedback on their Page. Correspondingly the Feedback owners ultimately relinquish control over whether the comment is public or not (though they can always delete the comment). So, whether the Feedback is public depends to some extent on whether the person leaving Feedback you have decided not to check the Make public box - but be aware that the Page owner can override this by choosing to make it public or to delete it.

If you uncheck the Public box, who can see Feedback you leave? Only you and the Page's owner. So, if the Page is owned by an individual, just that individual (this includes Pages in the Pages shared to this group by others category). If it's a Group page, then any Group member can see the Feedback.

How can you tell if Feedback is moderated? If the Page owner has enabled moderation for Feedback, commenters are alerted to this under the Make public checkbox.

Top of page

Blocked or invisible content? Some content seems to be missing - is it me?

Blanks space where you're expecting to see something? One likely reason is your web browser's security settings; the other is that the block is retracted. Read on for troubleshooting instructions.

Sometimes security-conscious web browsers want you to actively allow embedded media in their players. This includes some video, sound, Prezi presentations, among other things.

If you can't see some media, Firefox web browser users should look for the little shield icon (or similar) in your web browser's address bar. Click the shield and pull down the Keep blocking menu to disable protection. The content should then display.

Internet Explorer web browser users should look for a message towards the bottom of the window and click the Show all content link; the content should then display.

If there is a lot of blocked content it's a good idea to exempt MyPortfolio from your browser security restrictions. You do this in your browser's Settings or Options depending on the browser - for example in Firefox it's Options > Content > Block popup windows  then type: https://myportfolio.ucl.ac.uk and finally Allow, then Close, then OK.

Retractable blocks - where used, if these have been set to retract by default, then that's another reason content might be hidden. If you see a title with an adjacent arrowhead icon, click the icon and the block will be revealed (unless it's already revealed - in which case it will retract).

Top of page

How can I judge how well a group is working together?

  • Asking.
  • Comments ('Feedback', in MyPortfolio language) on Pages.
  • If you can see cross-referencing between pages created by different students, this may be an indication that students are paying attention to each other and integrating each others' work.
  • Requiring students produce weekly reports or logs may reveal if they are dividing the labour equitably.
  • Set deadlines for draft work, before the actual submission date.
  • Reports - more on these in a separate section.

Top of page

What is the difference between 'Group pages' and 'Pages shared to the group'?

'Group pages' have been created within a group context and are owned and editable by all members.

On the other hand, 'Pages shared to the group' were created by an individual and shared in a particular way which means that the group can view them and they appear listed, but the group cannot edit them or incorporate them into Collections.

Students were given guidance to copy all Pages as Group Pages - but it wasn't an explicit requirement.

Top of page

How can I find out which student has contributed to which bit of work?

  • MyPortfolio Group Reports are quite rudimentary but may shed some light. Assuming these have been enabled from the start (by a Group Administrator, in the Group's Settings) they can be accessed via the Reports link in the Group menu (horizontal menu under the Group name).
  • Pages may have comments ('Feedback') from group members underneath, which will give some indication of how different members have influenced the work.
  • If students have been required to produce an account of who did what and when e.g. as weekly logs or reports, these will be revealing, and have the advantage of including offline work.
  • While the work is ongoing, tutors and PGTAs can ask.

Top of page

What do the Reports tell me?

It's important to note that unlike a wiki, MyPortfolio doesn't keep a history of edits (the UCL wiki was considered for this group project but MyPortfolio had other more compelling benefits). So while MyPortfolio offers some reports, it does not distinguish contributions to Group pages.

From the Mahara 1.7 manual, here's what the Reports tell us.

  1. Pages shared with this group: List of all the pages that people have shared with this group.
  2. Shared by: Displays the author of the page.
  3. Members involved: shows the group members who have commented on the pages publicly.
  4. Non-members involved: shows the users who have commented on the pages publicly but are not members of the group.
  5. Next to each person who commented on a page is the count for the number of comments they have left on that page.
  6. The total count for the comments by members and non-members is displayed.
  7. Pages owned by this group: List of all the pages that were created within the group.

Top of page

Can I see an individual student's report, like on Moodle?

Administrators can provide you with this, but only in exceptional circumstances.

Find out more

  • If what you're looking for isn't here in these Questions & Answers, let ELE know.
  • Talk to ELE - the support team can be reached via 020 3549 5678 (internal: 65678) or email ele@ucl.ac.uk.
  • You can contact your Faculty's E-Learning Facilitator. For SLASH, it's Mira Vogel on 020 3549 5197 (internal: 65197) - but she may take longer to get back in touch than the support team above.
  • Guides at the UCL MyPortfolio Resource Centre
  • Mahara (the software we call MyPortfolio) has its own guides and support forums.
  • Search YouTube - somebody may have recorded a screencast of what you are looking for.

Top of page