Main page ► Managing content ► Working with files
Adding files to your course
Moodle provides an easy way for a teacher to present materials to their students. These materials may take the form of files such as word-processed documents or slideshow presentations. The materials can be displayed on the page either as individual items or bundled together inside folders. One teacher might for instance wish to share a single research document in pdf format; another might have a folder of sample past examination papers for students to download. Most types of files can be uploaded and accessed through Moodle but the student needs to have the correct software to be able to open them.
To add files to a Moodle course, you must first ensure you have the editing turned on.
Drag and drop
- If you are using a modern browser, you can simply click, hold and drag and drop a file directly onto your course page. You will know if drag and drop is available to you because you will (briefly) see a message at the top of your screen:
To drag and drop a folder, you must first compress/zip it using whichever program your computer has.
Add a resource or activity
- Instead of drag and drop, you can click the link 'Add an activity or resource' and select either File or Folder from the activity chooser (or choose from the 'Add a resource' drop down menu, if this is present instead.
Selecting a file or folder in the activity chooser
The "Add a resource" drop down menu
- The screen for uploading and displaying a file (or folder of files) includes an "add" button. Clicking on this button takes you to the File picker which is the name given to the file storage and access area within Moodle. Find out more about the places you can upload or add files from in the File picker page.
- There is also a block (with an arrow) into which you can drag and drop a file straight from your desktop into Moodle.(Note that this currently doesn't work with Internet Explorer.)
Area for dragging and dropping files into
Viewing uploaded files
- Once uploaded, files appear as thumbnails in the file manager for easy recognition.
- Files view can be easily toggled between icons view or a table view with sizes and dates, or a hierarchical list view.
File picker hierarchical list view
Editing or updating uploaded files
- Clicking on the name of an uploaded file opens up a pop up dialogue box which allows file details quickly to be altered.
Creating an alias/shortcut
- When an uploaded file - or a file from the Private files, Dropbox, File system or EQUELLA repositories - is re-used elsewhere on Moodle, the teacher has the option to make a copy (a new, unconnected version) or to create a shortcut or alias. (Note: Previously an alias could be made to a file stored in Box.net, however with Box.net API v2 this is no longer possible.)
- If an alias is created, then when the original file is updated, it will change in all instances of the alias. So a teacher might add course notes to their private files for example, and then add them into a number of courses. When the teacher makes an alteration in the file in their private files, this alteration will be reflected in all instances of the course notes.
- An alias can be recognised by its thumbnail. See the difference in the screenshot below between the original file (left) and the alias (right):
- To update a file, go to its original location (for example Private files) and upload your new version with the same name . You will be prompted to override or rename the file. Choose "override" and this file will replace your original file and the alisas/shortcuts will remain and all be updated to your latest version.
Areas in which aliases cannot be made
An alias cannot be made in the following areas of Moodle:
- an assignment submission
- a forum post attachment
- a workshop submission
- a quiz essay
- a database activity file field
This is to prevent cases such as a student uploading an item for assessment and then subsequently changing the original in their private files. When a student uses a file from their private files in one of these instances, they do not see the options to "copy" or "create an alias". Below is an example of a file added to an assignment:
Assignment submission with no option to create an alias
Site administration settings
in Moodle 2.9! An administrator can add new file types and view, edit and delete existing file types from Site administration > Server > File types. This means that, for example, if teachers and students on your site use a lot of files specific to a particular program, such files can now be recognised by Moodle, and, when downloaded, they will open in the correct program, rather than presenting themselves as a generic zip file.
Adding a new file type
1. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the "Add" button
2. Add the details of your file type, using the example below as a guide. This example will add the .mobi extension (for a Kindle ebook) with the standard document icon.
3. Click to save the changes and you will see your new file type has been added to the list:
File types and Assignments
Tracker item: https://tracker.moodle.org/browse/MDL-39913
Discussion thread: https://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=217532
Removing a file type
- Clicking the X next to a file type will remove it from the site. You will be prompted to confirm before deletion.
Editing an existing file type
- Clicking the edit icon next to a file type will allow you to change certain details, for example the associated icon and description. If you don't wish to use the default description, you can specify your own custom description (with multi-language tags if your site supports multi-languages) or you can use an alternative language string from mimetypes.php.
Google docs and docx
Importing Google docs files as docx. See https://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=320144
Assignment Links for Instructors
Not an instructor? Review How do Students Submit Assignments?
Creating an Assignment
To create an assignment, use the Add Materials button at the top of your Course Materials page. You can also access the Add Materials button from within a folder.
- Click Add Materials.
- Select Add Assignment.
- Fill out the Create Assignment form.
- Enter a Description. Here, you can enter directions your students will need to complete the assignment
- Set a Due Date to place the assignment in the Course Calendar and Upcoming area.This will also enable Overdue notifications if a student fails to submit the assignment by the due date.
- Select a Grading Category from the dropdown. If you do not select a grading category, it will default to Ungraded, and will not appear in your gradebook.
- Select a Scale or Rubric from the dropdown menu. To learn more about grading scales and rubrics, see our article on Setting Up Your Gradebook.
Use Advanced Options to turn on/off the following features:
- Use Individually Assign to only display the assignment to a specific member of the course or a grading group.
- Align Learning Objectives to add a custom learning objective, common core, or state standard.
Enterprise users: Once you have aligned your material with learning objectives, use the Mastery tool to track your students' progress
- Lock prevents students from making submissions. You may want to lock the assignment after the due date has passed.
- Enable Submissions: Click the dropbox icon to provide an area for students to submit work. You can opt to disable submissions if the assignment does not require something in return from the student - for example, reading homework.
- Published to student: opt to show or hide the assignment from the student view.
- Grade Statistics displays the statistics for the assignments to students, which is located in an icon above assignment submissions.
- Enable Comments: This allows students to comment on the assignment.
Once you click Create, the description and any additional files or links will appear on the assignment, along with the Submissions and comment tools. From this screen, you can manage assignment submissions, grade students, and participate in the comments area.
When a student makes a submission to an assignment, you will receive a notification at the top of your home screen:
The Submissions feature is located in the right column of the Assignment. You can also access it by clicking the Assignment listed in the Calendar. Use this area to manage student-submitted files.
Submitted files are organized by On Time and Late,based on the assignment's Due Date. You can download or view each individual file, or you can download all assignments in a bulk .zip file.
The Document Viewer enables you to view and/or annotate student assignment submissions directly through your Schoology account. To use the Document Viewer, click a submission.
In the Document Viewer, you can:
- Comment and discuss in the right column.
- Upload a file to the comment/discussion feed.
- Highlight selected text.
- Comment in the document.
- Strikeout selected text.
- Draw on the document.
- Grade the assignment.
- Download the file and save it on your computer.
- Return the annotated/graded assignment to the student just by clicking Save Changes.
Note: The Schoology Doc Viewer supports the following file types—.doc, .docx, .html, .odt, .pdf, .rtf, .text, .ppt, .pptx, .swf, .xls, .xlsx, .mp3, .mp4, .mov, .wav, .wmv, and many more. The submission viewer does not convert iWork files, but you may download these submissions onto your computer. You cannot annotate all file types (media files, for example) using the Annotation tool bar.
The Submissions Viewer feature enables you to "return" assignments to students by clicking the Save Changes button in the bottom-right corner of a document. If you use a third-party annotation program, you can upload your revised document to the comments/discussion area to the right of the student's submission.
If you plan to have students submit multiple revisions of the same assignment, you can leave comments in the right column, where you will see a history of submissions and of your comments.
You can enter a grade directly on a submission in the upper-right corner of the document viewer.
When you click into the Grade field, you can enter a grade based on the grading scale or rubric you selected while creating the assignment, along with a comment. The comment entered here will appear in the gradebook. It will also display in the student's Grades area of the course if you check Showto Student. After entering a grade and a comment (optional), click Submit to save.
Back to the Course Materials article
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