- 24 May 2023
- 3 minutes to read
What are context levels in Totara?
- Updated on 24 May 2023
- 3 minutes to read
Understanding context levels is important for managing permissions and ensuring that users have appropriate access to different parts of the system and the content on your site. Contexts in Totara are the places in the system that a role or permission applies. Context levels are used to define the scope of permissions for a particular user or role within the system. The role a user holds in each different context level determines which actions the user can perform and what is made visible to them across the site.
The different context levels in Totara are:
- System context: This is the highest context in Totara, and it applies to the entire system. Permissions granted at this level are applied across the entire site.
- Tenant context: If you have multitenancy enabled and have one or more tenants set up, permissions can also be granted for a specific tenant. Roles such as Tenant User Managers can only be assigned at the tenant context.
- Category context: This level applies to a specific category of courses. Users with permissions at this level can manage courses within that category.
- Program or certification context: This level applies to a specific program or certification. Users with permissions at this level will have the relevant capabilities across all courses within the given program or certification.
- Course context: This level applies to a specific course. Users with permissions at this level can manage activities and resources within that course.
- Activity context: This level applies to a specific activity or resource within a course. Users with permissions at this level can manage that activity, including adding or removing instances of the activity or resource.
- Block context: This level applies to a specific block on a site. Users with permissions at this level can manage that block, including configuring its settings and visibility.
- Workspace context: This level applies to a specific workspace. Workspace members are given the Learner role at the workspace context when they join a workspace, while the Workspace Owner will have additional permissions to help them run the workspace.
- Front page: This level applies to the Totara front page. You can assign roles and permissions at this context for users who only need to access the front page.
- User context: This level applies to specific users on your site. A manager will have permissions at the user context for any of their direct reports.
Let's look at an example of a user who holds different roles in different contexts:
- You could have a user who is assigned the Learner role at the site level, meaning they can browse the site as a typical user, finding and completing training that interests them, participating in workspaces and discussions, and using performance management functionality such as competencies and performance activities.
- This user could also be assigned the Editing Trainer role for a specific course they're expected to run. In this course the user would be able to create activities, enrol users, grade Learners, and more.
- In any other course on the site, however, they would only be able to act as a Learner, completing the required activities.
- This user could also participate in a number of different workspaces as a member, but act as a Workspace Owner in a specific workspace related to their area of expertise.
Let's look at another example on a site using multitenancy:
- A user is assigned the Learner role at the site level, allowing them to browse and complete learning that doesn't sit within any tenants.
- The user is also assigned as a tenant participant to a specific tenant focused on their suborganisation. The user has the Course Creator role in this tenant's context, allowing them to create learning content.
- The user can therefore manage courses, programs and more for the subset of users in their tenant, but also be assigned organisation-wide learning at the site level.
Now, with an understanding of context levels, you may want to configure the various Totara roles and determine what access they have across your Totara site.
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