The assignments tool (accessible from the home page) allows a learner or a group of learners to upload documents for the teacher to review. Assignments can be seen and downloaded by other learners unless configured as invisible ( ) by the teacher.
Assignment documents are usually homework exercises set by the teacher, but they could also be files of interest to others which a learner may wish to share. The assignments tool can therefore be used to receive individual or collective reports, to collect answers to open questions, or indeed any other form of document developed by learners.
The tool also allows the teacher to modify the default visibility of the assignments sent/posted by learners. This ensures students can sent files (exercises, reports, written production, …) in privacy to the course for evaluation by the teacher or course delegate. Click on Assignment settings on the Assignments page:
Illustration: Assignment settings
Making assignments visible by default to all users enables learners to check one another's assignments. This can be a valuable learning technique, as pupils can learn a lot through sharing each other's work, but it has of course to be used carefully; not all learners are not ready to be given so much freedom! The choice between private (only visible to the teachers) or public assignments (all learners can see assignments from others) can be made by clicking the appropriate visibility settings. The teacher can make any post visible or invisible to other learners by checking the or icon next to the relevant entry in the list of learner posts shown for any given assignment.
Note: A significant improvement in 1.9 is that assignments can also now be written and submitted directly within the assignments tool, instead of requiring to be uploaded as documents.