Note: This tutorial will not teach you how to setup self sign-up groups, only how to manage them. If you wish to implement self sign-up groups in your course, we advise reaching out to ATD for a consultation by filling out the CCAPS-ATD Learning Management Assistance form.


Self sign-up groups are a great way for students to choose their own groups in Canvas. That said, there is a major caveat that you will need to know if you want the group to function the way you are intending. That caveat is: once self sign-up groups are turned on, students can change their groups as much as they want. This could have unwanted consequences down the road if the setting is not turned off after students have begun to submit assignments in their groups and are being graded.

Typically a course is designed to have a non-graded assignment that tells students how to select their groups as well as a due date that sets a window to sign-up for their group. After that window closes, the instructor must turn off the self sign-up setting to lock the groups in place. The steps below will show you how to accomplish this. 


Step 1: Navigate to the Group Set Settings

You will need to navigate to People in the left-hand menu in your course site.

Then click on the tab for the Group Set that is set up for self sign-up groups.

On the far left click on the vertical three-dot menu button.

Then click on Edit.

Go to People, then the group set with self sign-up, then click on the vertical three-dot menu button and select edit.

Step 2: Deselect Self Sign-up

A pop-up menu will appear with the group set settings. You will see an option for Allow self sign-up with a checked box next to it. Un-check the box to the left and then click on the blue Save button at the bottom left of the pop-up menu.

The organization of the students in their groups will now be locked.

If for any reason, before students have not made any submissions to any of the group assignments associated with the self sign-up group set and you want to open the window again for students to change groups, you may follow these steps to turn on self sign-up.

Un-check "Allow self sign-up" and click the Save button at the bottom of the pop-up menu.


If students have made submissions to any group assignments associated with the self sign-up group and you need to change student groups, please read our tutorial on Changing Group Members in a Group Set.