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Moodle Tips for SUNY Plattsburgh Students

How to Use the Moodle Online Course System

Please note that these tips are general recommendations. Your online instructor can provide guidance pertaining to the specific course in which you are enrolled.

Working with Blocks

Look to the right of the screen. What you see there are called blocks. Different blocks provide you with different information. Go ahead and click on them and see what happens.

If you wish to send your instructor a private message, click on the Messages block. Alternatively, click on your instructor's e-mail address to send a note.

On your left is a block titled Settings. This block lets you can access your gradebook by clicking on Grades.


Online Assignment. The online assignment is a type of what was called a "dropbox" in ANGEL – the difference is that you cannot upload assignments with this feature; you must type or paste your text into the online field. Click on the assignment, and then click on "Add submission." Type or copy text into the text box and then click "Save changes."

Glossary. The assignment "Terms and Definitions" is an opportunity for you to build a glossary of helpful definitions for this class. Simply click on the assignment, and click on "Add a new entry." Type the word you want to define in the field labeled "Concept." Type the definition of the word in the field labeled "Definition." Do not choose a category and leave the auto-linking boxes blank. When you are finished, click "Save changes." You can access the glossary at any time by clicking on the "Glossary" activity in the Activities block on the upper right of your page.

Uploading files. This is another example of how drop boxes have changed from ANGEL to Moodle. In this case, you will not be able to type anything into a box; you must upload a saved file. First, click on the assignment and read the directions for it. Then, click on the "Upload files" button in the lower left corner. Click "Add," choose "Upload file" from the left side of the “File picker" box. As you become familiar with the file picker, you will see that you have other sources from which to choose files, but for now stick with "Upload file." Click on "browse" and search your hard drive or flash for your file. Select your file and click "Open," then click "Upload this file." You should see that your file has been added. Click "Save changes." You can add a number of files for submission.

You may edit or delete your submission by clicking on the "Edit these files" button below your file name. Below that button is a section titled "Notes." If you click “Edit” below that, you may send a note to me about your submission. When you are ready to send the file, click "Send for Marking" (it's down at the bottom of the page).

Forums. Moodle forums are very straightforward, though you will encounter two basic different types. With most forums, when you click on the forum, you will see a button that is titled, “Add a new discussion topic.” Click on that and you will have a box that requires you to type in a subject and then type in your post in the field titled “Message.” You can add attachments, if you wish, then when you’re ready, click “Post to forum.”

Another type of forum is called the “Q & A.” This forum requires you to post an answer before you are able to see other students’ postings. While the button you see is titled “Add a new question,” unless your professor is explicitly asking YOU to add a question, you should instead click on your professor's question and answer that. If your professor has asked you and your classmates to add a question, in order to see their posts and reply to them, click on the title of the post and then click on “reply” in the lower right corner of the posting. Either way, you will not be able to see anyone else's responses to the question until you respond.

If your professor has added an Activities block then you can check out all available forums there, as well as subscribe (get a copy of each post in your mail) or track (see notification of unread posts on the course site – recommended).

Contact Information

For more information about online learning at SUNY Plattsburgh, please contact us:

John Locke, TEL Coordinator
Online Learning Office

Phone: (518) 564-4537
Email: [email protected]

Mailing Address
Library & Information Technology Services
SUNY Plattsburgh
2 Draper Avenue
Plattsburgh, NY 12901

Note: When communicating with us about online courses and programs, please provide as much information as possible, including your name, student status, and contact information. If you are interested in a specific course, please let us know the title and semester. We look forward to hearing from you!