Faculty Development Center a division of Information Technologies

FDC: FirstClass Permissions

Setting Permissions

Permissions for a conference determine who is allowed to use the conference, and at what level. for example, some conferences should be read only, except for you as the controller; other conferences will be read/write for all users. Follow these instructions to set permissions:

  1. Click once on the conference to select it, then from the Conferencing menu, select Permissions.
  2. In the Permissions form, override the default message expiry by entering “150” as the number of days before messages will expire from your conference. This will permit messages to stay within your conferences for the length of the semester.
  3. Next, permit users or groups of users to participate in the conference by listing them under “Who.”
  4. Start with yourself. Type your name in the prompt under the word “Who,” then press Enter.
  5. Enter the next individual who should have special permissions, such as a TA or Administrative Assistant. If your conference is open to all FirstClass users, then you should enter “All Users” under “Who” as a group that is permitted to see it.
  6. Determine the correct level of permissions for the individual(s) or group(s) you have given permissions. Press and hold on the pop-up menu which appears next to each user’s name and select their level of interaction. The most common permission levels are described in the next section.

Note: Groups you can use are created by the Administrator. For assistance with existing privilege groups (such as students, faculty or another specific group of users) please contact the Administrator.

Levels of Permissions
There are several levels of permissions that you may assign to each user or group of users. The most commonly used are described below:
  • Disallowed – No permissions; cannot even open the conference.
  • Reader – Can open the conference, read messages, download attachments; send access is denied.
  • Contributor – Can open conference, read, download, send messages and upload files.
    Moderator – Same as contributor but can also DELETE anyone’s messages from the conference, and can create folders (not conferences).
  • Controller – All previous permissions, plus can create conferences, set permissions, etc. This permission is RESERVED FOR YOU ONLY!
    There are some default settings of which you should be aware:
    1. If you do not specify any permissions on the conference, ALL USERS are contributors by default.
    2. If you list a name or a group under the “Who” section of the Permissions form, but do not select the level of permissions, the default is DISALLOWED for that user or group.
    3. Internet users (anyone who addresses a message to your conference’s Internet address) are part of ALL USERS by default.

Take care not to disallow yourself! If you do not list yourself as the controller FIRST, you will not be able to continue to set permissions or make conferences within that conference.
Always list individuals first, then subgroups and ALL USERS last. FirstClass starts at the top of the list, to determine each user’s level of permission, trying to find the first category to which that user belongs.

Controller Only

  • Edit Permissions
  • Create sub-conferences
  • Edit messages—There are rare situations where you would need to edit others’ messages.
  • Change window location—Take Care! If you move your window to the lower corner of the screen, other users will find their window opening at that same location/position!

Moderator or Controller

  • Delete any item
  • Create folders and files—Creates folders but not conferences
  • Approve—Typically unused; we rarely set conferences such that items must first be approved.


  • Send
  • View Permissions—Allows user to see who the moderator/controller is and what groups have permission for the conference.

Reader or above

  • Open items
  • Download files and attachments
  • View History

Custom permissions or above

  • Delete by sender—Allows the sender to delete her/his own messages from the conference.
  • View summary only—User can open the conference, see what is there, but cannot open any items.
  • Search—User can use the FirstClass search function.

As controller, you can delete files, folders, messages, even conferences…even accidentally. Be careful not to delete any items within conferences, unless you are sure you want to permanently remove them! Be especially careful with students’ work! Deleted files cannot be recovered!
As controller, you can change the position (location relative to the monitor) of the conference window. If you move a window to the side of your monitor so you can view another window at the same time, remember to move it back. Students may have trouble using the conferences if their monitor is smaller than yours, and the conference window opens off the screen.
Remember you must be designated as a controller by the Administrator. You will not have any of these permissions in any areas of the FirstClass system unless you have been designated as the controller of that area.

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