To initialize a WeBWorK course:

  1. Check that the instructor has provided you with enough information to create their course(s). If they have customized homework sets in an older course, it helps to have those homework sets exported to set definition files before you start this process.
  2. Visit and log in (you must have an account in the admin course to do this).
  3. If the instructor wants to clone an old course, you may need to unarchive it using the Unarchive Course tab.
  4. Click the Add Course tab.
  5. Give the course an ID. We have certain issues that have led to a naming convention for course IDs. Please try to follow this convention.

    First, please only use lowercase letters. Next, the simplest case is:


    "term" is a six-digit number, with the year followed by 01, 02, 03, 04 for winter, spring, summer, fall.
    We use MyPCC ID's because two instructors can have the same name. For example:


    A MyPCC user ID might have a period, and that might cause problems in a WeBWorK course ID. So we convert periods to underscores. For example, with a MyPCC ID of alex.jordan, we could have:


    There is an optional fourth segment to a course ID. This is to distinguish between sections if the instructor has multiple sections of the same course. It can be whatever the instructor prefers to distinguish the sections. It could be the CRN. Or something like "mw". Or something like "morning". Examples:


    Lastly, if you are creating a course for use outside of PCC (for example, for another Oregon CC that we support), try to follow the same naming convention, and put a tilde at the front. For the user ID part, use their email prefix and follow the convention to convert periods to underscores. For example, this could be a course out of Oregon Coast Community College:


  6. Give a Course Title and Institution. For PCC courses, use "PCC" for the institution.
  7. Leave "Add WeBWorK administrators to new course" checked.
  8. Enter all of the instructor's information. Use their MyPCC ID as their User ID. (Or use their email prefix it it is for a different school). For an initial password, use whatever you like as long as you relay that to the instructor and remind them to change it. I find it easy to just reuse their User ID.
  9. Choose the course to clone, and click Add Course.
  10. Log in to the new course just to make sure it functions. Carry out any special requests from the instructor if you would like to do that.
  11. Send the instructor a notification. Here is a template:

    Hello ____,

    Your WeBWorK course(s) are up at:

    Your user ID is:
    and your initial password is:
    (Please change your password in User Settings after you log in You will need to do this separately for each WeBWorK course.)

    For general faculty information about using WeBWorK, please visit:

  • No labels