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Site Administrators can manage seminar activity default settings via the quick-access menu under Seminars > Activity defaults.

Activity defaults settings.


The Events table - hide empty columns setting determines how event tables are displayed. Enabling this setting hides columns that are not in use.

For example, the 'Event name' and 'Rooms' columns are not used in the following table:

Event nameEvent typeEvent statusBookedSession timesRoomsActions

Upcoming7 / 1025 Dec 2018 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

FunWait-listed0 / 10


With this setting enabled the table will be displayed as follows:

Event typeEvent statusBookedSession timesActions

Upcoming7 / 1025 Dec 2018 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM...
FunWait-listed0 / 10

Attendance tracking and grading

Please see Creating a seminar activity and Taking attendance for more information.

Event attendance - mark at

Use the dropdown menu to choose when, by default, Trainers can mark attendance for a seminar event. Select from:

  • Beginning of final session
  • End of final session
  • Beginning of first session
  • Unrestricted - mark at any time

The 'Beginning of...' options allow attendance to be taken from 15 minutes prior to the start of the indicated session.

Seminar activity completion and grading are based on event attendance.

Session attendance tracking

Use the dropdown menu to enable session attendance marking by default, by selecting when Trainers can mark attendance for seminar sessions. Select from:

  • Disabled - don't track sessions
  • Beginning of session
  • End of session
  • Unrestricted - mark at any time

The 'Beginning of session' option allows attendance to be taken from 15 minutes prior to the start of the session.

Session attendance marks are advisory only and are designed to help obtain an overall attendance state for the event.

Manual event grading

Trainers can manually grade learners on a per-event basis rather than using the grade that is automatically assigned based on event attendance. 

Attendance based grades include:

  • Fully attended: 100%
  • Partially attended: 50%
  • Unable to attend: 0%
  • No show: 0%

With Manual event grading enabled, Trainers can mark attendance as usual, but will also have the flexibility to input a grade (0-100) for each attendee regardless of their attendance status.

Grading method

In cases where learners are able to attend multiple events in the same seminar activity, the Grading method setting determines which event grade to use as the overall activity grade.

Select from:

  • Highest event grade
  • Lowest event grade
  • First event grade
  • Last event grade

The first event is the attended event with the earliest start time. The last event is the attended event with the latest finish time.

For example, let's assume there are four seminar events and a Learner has received the grades of 50, 70, 20 and 30, in the order of seminar event date. The seminar activity grade will be calculated as follows:

Grading methodSeminar grade
Highest event grade70
Lowest event grade20
First event grade50
Last event grade30
Passing gradeUsed by seminar activity completion to determine passing grade for the seminar.Setting the passing grade higher than 0 enables the use of pass/fail marks on the activity completion report.

Sign-up workflow

Please see Creating a seminar activity and Manager approval for more information.

How many times the user can sign up

Select from the dropdown how many times a Learner may sign-up within a seminar activity. Choose from 1 to 10 or Unlimited.

A value of 1 disables multiple sign-ups.

This setting does not take cancelled sign-ups or declined requests into consideration.
Restrict subsequent sign-ups based on the state of previous signups. Enabling any of these state restrictions will limit users to a single concurrent sign-up within the seminar, as they will not be able to sign-up to another event until their current sign-up has its attendance set to one of the selected states. If none of these restrictions are enabled users can have as many concurrent sign-ups within the seminar as the maximum limitation allows.Cancelled sign-ups are not taken into consideration.
Clear expired waitlistsThe waitlist for events gets cleared when they start, allowing users to signup to a new events. The Waitlisted signup expired notification can be used to inform users about this happening.-
Terms and conditionsText entered in this setting will be the default for the Learner accepts terms and conditions setting but can be edited for each seminar activity instance.The default text for this setting is 'Check the box to confirm your eligibility to sign up to this seminar.'

Manager reservations

Please see Allocate and reserve spaces for more information.

Allow reserve/assignManagers are able to make reservations or bookings on behalf of their team members.Closer to the time of the event, a manager or Trainer can nominate individual Learners for the reserved bookings.
Max reservations

The total number of reservations / bookings that a manager can make for their team.

Reservation cancellation daysThe number of days in advance of the event that reservations will be automatically cancelled, if not confirmed.-
Reservation deadlineThe number of days before the event starts after which no more reservations are allowed (must be greater than the cancellation days).-

Totara Academy

The Totara Academy has a whole course dedicated to using Seminar Management in Totara Learn. Here you can learn more on how to use seminars, see best practice, and give it a go yourself.

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