Totara Engage makes it easy for your users to find curated learning and resources, get involved in discussions, and share knowledge with peers.

You can read more about our learning experience platform (LXP) on our website, where you can also find information about employee engagement strategies

If you are setting up Totara Engage for the first time you will need to follow the steps outlined below.

Note that using multitenancy on your site will affect which Totara Engage content users are able to access. See Multitenancy in Totara Engage for more information.

Getting started with Totara Engage

When starting to use Totara Engage, either when upgrading from an existing Totara Learn site or for a brand new site, you will need to set up some of the important functionality so your site is ready to use.

Follow these steps to get started:

  1. When Totara Engage is activated user profiles become active for the users. By default only the user profile summary card and the User profile - Social block with the link to users' public contributions will be displayed. You can configure the default user profile further by enabling corresponding capabilities and configuring User profile blocks. 
  2. Configure the user profile summary card by navigating to Quick-access menu > Users > User profile summary card
  3. To create topics navigate to the quick-access menu and search for Manage topics (or go to [yoursite]/totara/topic/index.php), then click Add topics. This will allow users to assign these when creating resources. Note that users will not be able to create public resources without an assigned topic, so you need to make sure there are topics to choose from.
  4. Set up and configure the Totara Engage recommendations engine. This is required for any recommendations to function. For information on how to set up the recommendations engine on the server side please see our technical documentation.
  5. Configure the Find learning catalogue by navigating to Learn > Find learning > Configure catalogue. On the Contents tab ensure that Totara Engage content (resources and playlists) is ticked, and will therefore be included in the catalogue.

With Totara Engage users will be able to see other users' profile pages, but only the parts configured by the Site Administrator (e.g. the user profile summary card and user profile blocks).

Creating, finding and sharing learning

One of the main benefits of using Totara Engage is that users can create their own content to share with other people in your organisation.

There are three types of contributions users can make:

These can all be found in the user's library

Users can also assign topics to their contributions. Topics are set by Site Administrators and make it easier for users to find similar items that interest them.

Users can like and comment on content to show that they found it interesting, or ask questions and start a discussion. Users can also share content they find interesting with other users or workspaces. Users are also able to report inappropriate content, allowing a Site Administrator to review the flagged content and remove it if necessary. 

Some organisations may be wary about allowing all users on their site to create content in Totara Engage - while it is possible to report and remove inappropriate content, in some cases it would be better to prevent this content from being created at all. For example, if you wanted to allow only a sub-set of your trusted users to create content, you could remove the relevant permissions from the default user roles, then create a new role to assign to your trusted users. This role could be identical in other ways, just with the added capabilities to allow content authoring.

You could remove/add the following capabilities as required:

  • Create resource (engage/article:create)
  • Create survey (engage/survey:create)


In Totara Engage you and your users can create workspaces to provide areas for users to engage in discussions with peers and create and share relevant content. Workspaces can be used for specific topics, departments, skills, or other organisational requirements. Workspaces can be public or private, and private workspaces can also be hidden from search results. Only Workspace Owners can specify who can participate in hidden workspaces.

Each workspace has its own library, and a dedicated tab for discussion posts.

There are two roles associated with workspaces:

Workspaces will typically have a Workspace Owner (although they don't require one to function) and many members who have either found the workspace themselves or have been added by the Workspace Owner.

Engagement reports

As a Site Administrator you can use four types of engagement report to understand more about engagement levels on your site:

Microsoft Teams integration

If your organisation uses Microsoft Teams you can integrate your Totara site to access a lot of Totara Engage functionality through Microsoft Teams.

You can set up the Totara application to facilitate notifications from Totara Engage, the messaging extension, and key features such as the library.

Totara Academy

The Totara Academy has a whole course dedicated to engagement for high performanceHere you can learn more about the principles and benefits of learner engagement.

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