Understanding User Attributes

The Manager Dashboard and Learning Groups tools each use attributes to organize user and course information.

Learning Groups uses standard attributes assigned to users to organize the users into learning groups. These standard attributes, such as Department, Division, or Location, can provide logical groups for some courses that are required by corporate policy. Other standard attributes, such as Employee Role, can determine other courses that are available to users with that attribute.

Manager Dashboard uses a reserved attribute type to determine courses available to managers called Affiliated Org Units. Entering org unit codes (such as a Department org unit code) as the attribute values for each user with the Manager role makes only those courses affiliated with the org unit code available for assignment to direct and indirect reports by managers. This reserved attribute type cannot be used to create or alter learning groups. You must set the d2l.Tools.ManagerRole.CoursesAvailableToAssign configuration variable to use this attribute. Managers with restricted course assignment options can only select from the designated courses in the org unit type when assigning courses - other courses that are available in the organization are unavailable to the manager within the Assign Courses workflow.


  • D2L has a set of default attributes configured for use by Learning Groups and Manager Dashboard. Contact D2L Implementation Services if you want to create custom attributes and configure your instance for the custom set. Up to 50 total attributes can be used. Note that attribute values should not exceed 256 characters (bytes).
  • The Attributes admin tool is used to browse the defined attributes in the system, view the attribute data assigned to each user, and is the entry point for manually uploading attribute data.
  • All attributes are added to the system using a CSV file that contains the Attribute name, Attribute type, description, values, and unique values. All standard and reserved types of attributes are included in the CSV file template provided by D2L. The maximum CSV file size you can import is 2GB.
  • If you do not have a CSV file, you can download a template to create the CSV file on the Bulk Attribute Upload tab of the User Attributes page.