How/When is course completed?
There are three scenarios to look at for understanding how the LMS would mark successful completion of course by a learner (also called as awarding the course).
Case 1 (Auto Award): This is the default mechanism. Auto grading is ON for the course session, and learner’s score in gradebook becomes > passing score. System will turn on the award flag automatically. Course player will alert the user that they successfully completed the course. This can happen with default grading scheme or custom grading scheme.
Note that default grading scheme will do auto award only if there is atleast one mandatory item (lesson, test, survey, scorm) in the course, and auto grading is enabled on the course properties also. But if you are using custom grading scheme, then you have freedom to code the custom scheme the way you like. See few examples of custom schemes here
Case 2 (Manual Award): Instructor manually turns on Award flag in the grade of any learner. To do this instructor has to open the learner's grades and then update the award status.
Case 3 (Auto Award thru a Scheduled Exam): Having an exam in course session, which is flagged as “Course completion exam”. Only one test should be added to such an exam. If student passes the test, the grade’s Award flag will get checked, else it will be reset. There can be more than one exam, which can decide course completion. Student will get course completion by completing any exam.
End of course exams are shown with a ribbon icon in the list of exams on course session details.
When a learner completes a course, an email notification would be sent out to the instructor of the course. The email would have a link to the Transcript page of the learner for that course session (The email can always be customized through Site Admin -> Email Settings -> System Notification). The email can also be located online through the menu item Site Admin -> Email Notifications and category filtered as COURSE_COMPLETED.