A+ has a Course settings page which is only visible to the teacher. Log in
with an account having teacher privileges. If you want to test this with
aplus-manual, this is the username root and password root. Next click
the Edit course link from the menu on the left as shown in the picture
The course settings page has several tabs.
The Course tab allows editing the course details. The fields are in English
and quite self-explanatory.
Visible to students: this checkbox allows hiding the course from students.
This is useful when you are setting up a new instance of your course on a
production server, but don’t want the students to enroll and see the contents
Instance name: this is shown in the list of current and old courses
(https://APLUSDOMAIN/archive) to distinguish different instances from
Url: this is the identifier of course instance in the A+ URL, for example,
in the URL https://plus.cs.hut.fi/a1141/2018/, the 2018/ part is the instance.
Image is the image showing on the A+ front page. See
Gallery of features for
an example. With a running copy of aplus-manual, try to set the course image
to file fireworks.jpg found in the subdirectory images of the manual.
Language is a two-alphabet country code in lowercase, such as en,
fi, or se.
Students enroll to the course in A+. Enrollment is required for submitting
solutions to exercises. Note that there is no integration to other university
systems, such as WebOodi in Aalto University. In case of WebOodi, the student
must both enroll to the course in WebOodi and to the course in A+.
Enrollment starting time and Enrollment ending time in the course
settings indicate when the students can enroll to the course.
Starting time and Ending time define the starting and ending times for
the course. They are also the default opening and closing times for course modules.
The times and dates have the format YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS, that is, year-month-day
hours-minutes-seconds in the 24-hour clock. For example, 2016-06-01 12:00:00
means 1st June 2016 Noon.
Enrollment starting and ending times do not need to be enclosed within the
course starting and ending times. If the enrollment starting or ending times are
not defined, the course starting and ending times are used as default values.
Enrollment is possible between the enrollment starting and ending times for the
enrollment audience: logged-in internal or external user (the target audience is
The Allow unofficial submissions setting in exercise categories enables
students to submit solutions to exercises after the deadline, but those
submissions are unofficial and their points are ignored. The submissions are
stored in the database and the student may view the feedback.
Lifesupport time: after this, the model answers are not visible to students.
Archive time is used to prevent all exercise submissions after a certain time.
This is relevant for unofficial submissions.
Chronologically, the times should be set as follows:
Course starting time < course ending time < lifesupport time < archive time
Module (exercise round) open and close times do not need to be enclosed within
the course starting and ending times.
Bugs (fixed in the Autumn 2019 release)
Bug: Student may submit after the archive time if the module is still open.
Bug: Student can view the exercise model solution after the module deadline
even if he has a personal deadline extension and may submit and gain points.
Bug: the module late submission close time may be earlier than the module
close time, which makes no sense and also allows students to view the model
solution while the module is normally open.
Enrollment audience has three options.
The View content to setting of a course instance controls who may view the
Bug (fixed in the Autumn 2019 release)
When set to “enrolled students”, unenrolled logged-in users may still
view course content chapters and exercises. They may not open their old
submissions, the course materials page nor the course results page, but
they see everything on the course front page anyway and they can open the
chapters and exercises.
all course pages.
Assistants is a list of course assistants. The assistants do not need to be
enrolled on the course. To add an assistant, enter their login in form
user@domain, for example, firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Technical error emails. By default exercise errors are reported to teacher
email addresses. Set this field as comma separated emails to override the
The difference between teachers and assistants is that assistants can view
students’ exercise submissions and grade them, but they cannot edit the course.
The Index tab controls how main page of the course is shown to the students.
Index mode has several options.
Description is a text shown on the main page of the course in top of
the index. One can enter either plain text or HTML here.
Footer is similarly content shown after the index.
A+ always shows the following menu items in the course menu on the left side of
Students see the Course menu group, which includes:
The teacher and assistants see in addition the Course staff menu group:
The Menu tab in the course settings allows adding new items to the course
menu. When you click the Add new menu item button, a form is shown to
create a menu item.
Access defines who can see the menu item.
Service allows to define an external web server where A+ links to and
which exchanges data with A+ via the LTI protocol.
Services described in this manual are
Rubyric. The Aalto University CS department
also has Lab Queue (Neuvontajono)
and Code Vault (Koodisäilö). Also the Piazza forum has
been used on at least Aalto courses “Data structures and algorithms Y” and
“Tietotekniikka sovelluksissa”. Ask for your A+ administrator for adding these
servises for your course.
Menu url: if an external service is configured for this menu item in the
Service setting, then a URL starting with / overwrites path in service URL
and extends it otherwise. Otherwise, a URL starting with / is absolute
within A+ and relative to the course path otherwise. Note that the URL entered here
can not include scheme or domain.
Examples of menu urls
programming_exercises/hello_world/ (note: without starting /)
is the way to make a menu link to a chapter inside the same course.
If you are running the A+ locally at http://localhost:8000/, this menu
url points to http://localhost:8000/def/current/programming_exercises/hello_world/ .
acos/demo_exercises/#point-and-click is the same, but with an
anchor to a header on a specific location on a course page.
/archive/ trims everything after the domain and port in the url.
If you are running the A+ locally at http://localhost:8000/, this menu url
points to http://localhost:8000/archive/.
The menu urls for Radar, Rubyric, Piazza, Lab Queue, and Code Vault are left
empty, because all of these use the LTI protocol and thus they know which
user and which course should be used.
Menu group label: this works wih the Access setting as follows.
Menu icon class: an icon for the menu item, if needed. Icons add decoration
and help with visual search. The icons are Glyphicons(R) from the Bootstrap web
framework; see list of icons here.
Enter the individual name of the icon. For example, cloud or hdd might
be useful for external cloud storage, comment for discussion forum such as
Piazza, screenshot for Radar, floppy-disk for Code Vault, and
question-sign for the Lab Queue.