Featured Plugin: Filtered Course List V3

The lead maintainer of the Filtered Course List block, Kevin Wiliarty from Hampshire College, recently added some new features to the plugin, bumping the version up to 3.0 with a seamless upgrade.

Filtered Course List is a block that displays a configurable list of courses; intended as a replacement for the My Courses block, although both may be used. FCL is in the Moodle plugin repository and has previously received a Reviewer’s Choice Award.

Kevin gave a presentation to highlight the new updates at the Winter 2017 Hack/Doc event at Lafayette College.

Filtered Course List Screenshot

Limitations of < v2.8.3

  • All-or-nothing Filter Type
  • All-or-nothing Regex matching
  • Willy-nilly Current and Future Rubrics (what if you want different labels besides Current and Future for courses?)
  • Three Settings per Custom Rubric (label, shortname, and expand by default)
  • Save to Apply
  • Hard to read
  • Hard to reorder
  • Hard to allow instance overrides
  • Hard to add new filter types

Version 3 Improvements

The filter configuration is now in a text area…

Screenshot of text area configuration

  • Expansion states can be abbreviated
  • Pipes separate filter settings
  • Whitespace is ignored
  • Empty and non-filter lines are ignored
  • Category filters can be used
  • Shortname and regex filters can be used
  • Completion filters can be used

The Pros

  • Easier to read
  • Mix filter types
  • Multiple categories
  • Flexible categories
  • Easier to reorder
  • Easier to add new types
  • Easier to configure instances

The Cons

  • Steeper learning curve for Moodle admins
  • Finding the category id to put in the configuration
  • No pipes can be used in labels

The upgrade is seamless. Some schools are already using this version of the block in production and it’s working well. The code and documentation can be found on GitHub.