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Moodle course formats #2b Weekly relative dates

Display dates relative to when the learners started a course.

As you will know, the Weekly course format in Moodle displays the course content week by week.

The course relative dates feature enables course or activity dates to be displayed relative to the user’s start date in the course.

The user’s course start date is their enrolment start date, unless they are enrolled before the course begins, in which case their start date will be the course start date (so the correct course start date is very important).

Course relative dates is an ‘experimental feature’ as it has not yet been implemented in all activities. In Moodle 3.9 it is implemented in the following areas only:

  • Assignment Allow submissions from, Due date, and Cut-off date are all relative to the user’s start date in the course.
  • The date for each course section (Week) is relative to the user’s start date in the course.

But be aware, course relative dates is not yet available for use with restrict access settings, or other activities such as Quiz.

To use course relative dates, the Moodle site administrator must first enable it for the site in:

Site administration > Development > Experimental settings

If course relative dates is enabled for the site, when adding a new course, you can choose to enable relative dates mode.

Note 1: After saving the course settings, relative dates mode cannot be changed. The setting is displayed greyed out.

Note 2: Relative dates mode cannot be enabled for existing courses.

Our advice at this stage is that you could certainly experiment with these options, but you could potentially confuse yourself, and learners, if you don’t get the settings correct initially ?

Stuart Mealor
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Stuart Mealor

Stuart is interested in all things e-learning, with specific interests in Moodle, e-learning strategy, and business development. His experience in education over 30 years, MBA in International Business, and knowledge of e-learning systems implementation, together with graphic design background, give him a unique skill set for e-learning projects.

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