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Student Homework Submission with Trello

Hi there,

Is there a way to:

1. Have students email their work directly to a board on Trello as themselves without being member? At the moment, the emails come through as '[me', which doesn't help.

2. If the above is possible, I'd like my comments about their work to go back to them directly.

3. I don't want to add them as members manually. I don't want them to be members per se, as I don't want the students to be in an open forum, I just want them to be able to send in their homework to the board's email address, as themselves, and for me to send the feedback by adding a comment to their card.

Is this possible?


2 answers

0 votes
Iain Dooley Community Leader Feb 27, 2019

@Joycellyn Akuffo Hi Joycellyn:

1) No that's not possible without them being a member of the board

2) N/A :)

3) Well, it's interesting that you should say this because it actually seems like what you want to do is use Trello as an email client.

There are a couple of options:

1) You could set this up using a Zapier integration plugged into Gmail. You'd need their premium plan as it would require multi-step zaps, and there'd be a minimum 5 minute delay between emails being sent and them showing up in the board. You couldn't do this using Trello's email to board feature because it doesn't have any information about who sent the email, in the card that's created. So it'd have to be a custom Zapier/Gmail thing. I'm not sure if the Butler Power Up can send emails -- the bot used to be able to, but potentially if you put the card into the board via Zapier, with the email address of the student in the description, you could then use Butler to forward the comment back to that student. Butler can't set the "from" address, though, so you could additionally choose to trigger a Zap on added comment, OR use Butler to send an email to a Zapier Email Parser address which would then forward it onto the student from your address. Needless to say, this is a pretty complicated solution :)

2) You can use this integration I wrote for the purpose of using Trello as an email client called Benko Board:

This is a one off install fee and then it just runs inside your Gmail account. It allows you to send and receive emails from Trello. You could then give your students an "alias" like "" or whatever, and set up a Gmail filter that would automatically label all essays with the Gmail label "Essays".

Benko Board can then be configured to import these into an Essays board, where you can reply to them and the replies will go out via Gmail. When students write back to you, their replies will be mapped to the same card.

The students won't then have access to the board at all, it'll just be your personal Trello board, and you can add your own notes, keep track of who's been graded and whatnot internally, without them seeing those notes.

You can also configure Benko Board not to import your other emails, so you would only use it for this one purpose, or you can just use it for all your emails if you'd rather.

If you're on an organisation's G-Suite account there is an admin setting that is sometimes disabled that will prevent you from using Benko Board, but it works on free Gmail accounts too (especially if only used for a more targeted purpose -- otherwise heavy usage may exceed Gmail's free quotas).

I'm using Zapier integration for a moment, no complaints. However, soon our funding will be cut, and I will have to give up this service. I often use Trello for work tasks with subordinates, but now I have to create boards for students as well. I share your reluctance to manually add all students, but there are always trade-offs. I already had experience teaching children through Trello. We studied English on this site So I wouldn't say Trello is uncomfortable. In general, it is possible to work with students. But there are too many nuances.

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