2. What’s in a Course Shell

Tags Moodle

Each academic course will automatically get a course shell; if there are multiple sections of a course, that course will get an additional shell for the combined sections. Each of those course shells has a number of components to help you and your students communicate with each other and take advantage of library resources.

NOTE: You can use Moodle for your committee or organization by requesting a shell for your group.

What's in a basic course shell?

The illustration below shows a standard Moodle course shell at Haverford. This is where you will put readings, assignments, quizzes, etc. The illustration is numbered to identify the components described in this section.

Illustration of Moodle course shell


1. Course index

In the upper left side of your screen, you see a button with three short horizontal lines. This button opens and closes your course index.

The course index is context-sensitive; the options you see within the menus may change depending on what you are doing at any time. In your course shell, the index gives you a quick way to navigate to your sections and items within your course.


2. Block Drawer

The Block drawer toggles open and closed. When open, you can use it to email your students (Quickmail), find the contact information for your librarian, and more. You can customize the block drawer. It has the following blocks by default:

  • Quickmail  — The Quickmail block lets you easily email your students.
  • Title IX notice — Included in all courses so students have easy access to important
  • Latest News  — In the Latest News block, you will see announcements that placed in the announcement forum. As mentioned above, these announcements are also emailed to your students.
  • Library Resources and Citation Resources  — The library included discipline-specific reference and citation information.
  • Instructional Design and Technology Support — Contact information to help you design your course and troubleshoot problems.
  • Calendar  – The calendar will automatically highlight the due dates of any Moodle activity. You can also add your own items to this calendar.
  • Recent Activity  — See what has changed since your last course access.
  • Add a block (when editing is on) — You can add blocks to the block drawer.


3. Edit mode/Turn Editing On

The edit button and toggle let you edit your course and add resources or activities.


4. Course Administration Area

The course administration options located at the top of your course, just under the course name, let you change your course settings and make your course visible to students, find your student participant list and roster report, manage your gradebook, and more.

The More menu includes course reuse, which lets you copy course materials from previous semesters.


5. Announcements

Each course has a special forum to post course announcements such as due dates, room changes, distinguished visitors, or other timely, important information. Items posted to the Announcement forum are emailed to students and archived in the latest news section of your block drawer.


6. Getting started instructions

Each course has Getting Started Instructions for setting explaining how to set up your course. These instructions are not visible to students.


7. (PLEASE READ) – Dear Professor 

Your courses each have a (PLEASE READ) – Dear Professor note. This is a letter from the Committee on Plagiarism Education suggesting ways to convey your own message regarding academic integrity in general and/or in your course. This letter is not visible to students.


8. A Note from Your Professor on Academic Integrity at Haverford:

This is a note to students from the Committee on Plagiarism Education. The Dear Professor letter explains how you can customize this to meet your needs.



Customize your course

All Haverford Moodle pages start with this layout, but you can customize or change this layout to meet your own course needs. The next section, Course Design And Settings, has suggestions on how to structure your site effectively.

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Article ID: 2707
Wed 1/26/22 12:15 PM
Tue 5/30/23 3:48 PM