Sensei 1.9 beta – Call for testers

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We’ve been hard at work on the latest Sensei update, and it’s almost ready! This beta release contains 514 commits from 10 contributors.

We would really love your help with testing the new features, to make sure it all works seamlessly.

What’s New?

The main changes in this version are an improved template system, built-in language packs, and a new collection of shortcodes for adding Sensei content anywhere in your site.

We need help to test these changes, to make sure that the new features work as they should, and also that everything still works as it did before for existing users.

Template Changes

We’ve made some changes to the frontend Sensei templates, combining files where appropriate, and separating logic from markup, making the templates much more flexible.

We need to test all of the following templates thoroughly. All screens need to be tested both when logged in and logged out. When testing courses/lessons/quizzes, you should test when logged in and taking the course, and when logged in and not taking the course.

    • New Course Archive Page
      • This includes the following new filters:
          • All – Displays all courses
          • Free – Displays all free courses
          • Paid – Displays all paid courses
          • Featured – Displays all featured courses
        • Sort by: Newest first / A-Z
    • Single Course Page (including courses with and without modules)
    • Single Lesson Page
    • Single Quiz Page (including quizzes with all question types)
    • Messages Page
    • Single Message Page
    • My Courses Page
  • My Profile Page

We have updated all templates except for the Email templates. If you have customised your templates in your theme they will still work. Please give us feedback if any of your templates break so we can look at improving the backwards compatibility.


The main frontend CSS file has moved from /assets/css/frontend.css to /assets/css/frontend/sensei.css


Previously we relied on shortcodes to display our course archives. In 1.9 we have introduced a new course archive template, as well as some new shortcodes that customers can use to display Sensei content wherever they wish.

The current shortcodes:

  • – A list of all courses.
  • – A list of featured courses.
  • – A list of paid courses (those linked to a WC product).
  • – A list of free courses (not linked, or linked to a free WC product)
  • Login

    – A list of courses the current user is taking or has completed. (Or a login/register form for logged out users).

These will continue to work for at least the next few versions, and we need to make sure they still work as they did before.

However, we will be encouraging people to switch to using the new course archive page, and the new shortcodes instead. The course archive page no longer requires shortcodes, and will be the page you select as “Course Archive Page” in Sensei > Settings.

All the following shortcodes and their parameters need testing thoroughly:

     – A list of featured courses
  • Login

     – A list of the courses the current user is taking. The default order here is by ‘title’ and order ‘ASC’. You can choose to show the completed or the active courses by the status parameter. If you omit this all courses (active and completed will be shown.
     – A list of specific courses by id. If no id’s are specified this shortcode will show all courses. By default this will show the most recent course by date. You can also specify the teacher and the category. Teacher can be the user ID or the teacher user name. Category can be the slug, id or term name.
  •  – A list of users with the teacher role, as link to their archive page. The include parameter is for adding extra users to the list of teachers. The exclude paramater will remove teachers already on the list.
  •  – A list of private Sensei messages for the current user.
  • Sensei LMS 3.1

    Author: donnapep

    Sensei LMS 3.1 introduces a setup wizard to help users get started creating courses straight away.

    Sensei LMS Course Progress 2.0.3

    Author: Renatho Rosa

    Sensei LMS Course Progress 2.0.3 has been released and includes the following changes: An unnecessary call to user_started_coursehas been removed. To install this update on your site, head on over to Dashboard → Updates now!

    Sensei Course Participants 2.0.1

    Author: Renatho Rosa

    Sensei Course Participants 2.0.1 has been released and includes the following changes: A new Hungarian translation. Get enrolled participants instead of in progress. To install this update on your site, head on over to Dashboard → Updates now!

     – Display a specific course page’s content by id.
  • No course categories found. – Display the course categories in a list. The categories will link to the archive pages. To only show top level categories, set the parent parameter to zero.
  • [sensei_unpurchased_courses] – A list of all courses linked to a WC product, which the current user has not yet purchased.

Language Packs

If a Sensei translation exists for your chosen language, it can now be installed and updated directly from WP admin.

To test this:

  • Go to our Sensei project on Transifex, and choose a language from the list (preferably one that is mostly translated).
  • Go to Settings > General in your WordPress dashboard and change your Site Language to your chosen language.
  • When you click ‘Save Changes’ your site’s language will change, and you should see a notification at the top of your dashboard telling you there is a Sensei translation available for your language.
  • Click ‘Install’ and the language pack will be installed. You should see a success message, and your Sensei admin pages should now display in your selected language.
  • Also test switching to a language that isn’t in the list on Transifex and make sure you aren’t prompted to install a language pack.

There are currently only a small number of language packs available, mostly with incomplete translations. We will be posting again soon with more details on how you can help contribute Sensei translations.

Other changes

There are several other changes in this release, which also need testing:

  • When lessons are completed, you will now see a “Next Lesson” button in the completion message.
  • Improved support for Twenty Fifteen theme
  • Added support for Twenty Sixteen theme
  • Improved support for Storefront theme
  • If you view a quiz that has no questions, you will be redirected back to the lesson
  • All chosen dropdowns have been replaced with Select2
  • Questions can now have a zero grade
  • Course management metabox on Edit Course screen which links directly to learner management and grading.

Important notes for developers

  • Sensei()

    now officially replaces


    , which will be deprecated in a future update.

  • The php classes are now auto loaded when needed instead of loading all classes for every request. New filters for all sensei core post type for easier customization.
  • You’ll notice that our class naming convention is no longer class-woothemes-sensei but rather class-sensei.
  • Better class and function comments to assist developer IDE with discovery.

How to test

If you’re interested in helping us test this update, please complete this short form, and we’ll get back to you soon with further details:

Sign up for beta testing


This round of beta testing will be open until Monday 30th November, so the sooner you can test the better.

6 thoughts on “Sensei 1.9 beta – Call for testers

  1. Hi there!
    Any idea when Sensei 1.9 will be released?

    1. Scheduled for some time next week, Denis 🙂

      1. Great! Thanks, Dan!

  2. Hi Dan, what a wonderful plugin. As designer I had for my customer setup a site with some restricted & paid content and a kind of user forum for asking learners each other and teacher. This site is not a schooI more a health portal. I gave bbpress, Memberships and Subscriptions a chance, but each time I saw limitations which did not work in case of customer whishes, I remembered how easy this would be if customer would switch over to sensei. I am happy to see next version.
    Beside the only thing which frustrates me is poor theme compatibility. I made a copy of template files and saved in child theme folder, but I was suprised that it works. It would be better, if knewed what I did? This is my limitation.

    Thanks, Adrian.

  3. Any news on the release, guys? The 1.8.8 bug not allowing to show the lessons to unregistered users is really hitting hard on my SEO 🙁

    1. It’s scheduled for tomorrow (2nd February). Sorry for the delay.

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