Instructor FAQ

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When editing student data the permission level drop-down menu shows "guest" by default, even if it should be "student"[edit]

This can be fixed if you have access to the server. There are two different versions of a software package called They handle drop down menus differently and the code in WeBWorK needs to be adjusted to work with the version of CGI installed on your site. See Release_notes_for_WeBWorK_2.4.9#Gotchya.27s_2

Can email from students be directed to different instructors based on their section number?[edit]

Yes. To set this for an individual course, navigate to the File Manager, and go up one directory from the templates directory. Edit the course.conf file to include the line

$feedback_by_section = 1;

To set this for all courses on your server, add this line to global.conf.

Editing course.conf from the web should be done cautiously since if you make a syntax mistake you can lock yourself and everyone else out of your course. (Only your course not the other courses on the server.) In this case you will need to be rescued by a site administrator or someone who has command line access to the server. If you don't understand part of this answer or don't feel confident about what is involved, ask your site administrator to make this change for you.

The "submit" button has disappeared[edit]

This is probably not a "bug" but a feature -- in particular the disappearance of the submit button when "acting as" a student often confuses instructors! See below.

The presence of the submit button (usually) indicates that the grade for the answer is being recorded. The check answer button indicates that the grade for the answer is not being recorded.

The submit button does not appear when:

  • it is after the due date for the problem.
  • the current user is a guest and there for their grades are not recorded.
  • the current user is acting as another user (e.g. a professor acting as a student)
    • The reasoning behind this is that an instructor, attempting to determine whether WW is behaving properly when evaluating a student's answer, does not in general want their answers to be recorded as the students (i.e. answering the question for the student while testing whether WW is working properly.)

Why are my past answers not showing up?[edit]

Past answers are not recorded for instructors (don't ask why :-) ). If a professor wishes to see WeBWorK exactly as a student sees WW it is best to create a dummy student login as your alter ego.

Why, when acting as a student, doesn't the professor see exactly what the student sees?[edit]

Most often an instructor is acting as a student to trouble shoot a potential problem with the question -- in that case the instructor needs extra tools to (1) see what WW thinks the correct answer is and (2) to edit the question to correct the problem. Hence when acting as a student the instructor sees the question rendered with the students seed (known as psvn or problem set version number) but otherwise maintains all of her instructor privileges. If you wish to see WeBWorK exactly as a student sees WW it is best to create a dummy student login as your alter ego.