Course Layout

Changing the Course Structure: Weekly, Topic, Grid, or Collapsed Topics Format

Moodle offers you a great deal of flexibility in changing how your course content is displayed. The middle column of your course homepage is divided into sections and provides a space for you to include links to all of your course’s resources and activities. Although there are multiple ways to organize your course content, we recommend you choose  the Topics format, Weekly Format, or try the new Grid or Collapsed Topics Format. The other formats are not recommended.

1. To begin, log into your course and click the Edit Settings link in the Administration block.

2. In the page that appears, scroll down to the Course Format section, expand to see the pull-down menu (it follows the course summary text box and course summary files). Select the format you prefer:

  •  Topics format will display your content into thematic sections that you can label any way you like. For example, you can label each section based on chapters, themes, or any kind of group naming scheme.
  • Weekly format will display each section as weeks, beginning with the start date for your course.
  • Grid format will display blocks of content that you can label anyway you like. When you click on a grid, it displays content from a particular section similar to the topics format
  • Collapsed topics format will display each section as a collapsible topic to help minimize the “scroll of death.”

3. After you select the format type, you should change the value in the next setting option Number of weeks/topics. If you chose the Topics format, Collapsed Topics, or Grid Format for your course, enter the number of topics or sections you need on your course homepage. For example, even if your course is available for fifteen weeks, you may choose to only have five topic areas. In this case, you would type in five into this box. If you chose the Weekly format, you should enter the number of weeks your course will be available. In the previous example, you would type fifteen into this box as the course would be available for fifteen weeks that term. If you choose a smaller number of weeks or topics than what was originally there and if you have content in those later sections, those sections will disappear from your view when you return to the course homepage. Don’t worry if you do this and can’t see your content anymore. You can go back into the course Settings again and increase the number of topics/weeks; your content will reappear.


4. Save your changes and you will return to the course homepage. You can now edit the section summaries, add content to any section. As you build your course, you may decide to add more topics by returning to the Settings page.