Note: You are currently viewing documentation for Moodle 1.9. Up-to-date documentation for the latest stable version is available here: Messaging.


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The Messaging system default is not limited to a specific course or role. Logged in users (students, teachers or administrators) may send messages to each other regardless of whether they are enrolled on the same course. This is unlike Forums and Chats that can be course, role or group specific.

Messages are sent via a popup Message window. This can be found via:

Site-wide messaging may be disabled/enabled by the Administrator in the permissions section of Administration > Configuration > Variables in Moodle 1.6, in Administration > Security > Site policies in 1.7 to 1.9, or in Administration > Advanced features in 2.0.

Alternatively, to encourage the use of messaging in a course, you may wish to add a Messages block and/or an Online Users block to the course page.

Sending messages

To send a message to an individual:

  1. In the Messages window click on the Search tab to search for the person, if appropriate checking the box "Only in my courses", then click on their name. (Alternatively, if the person is listed in the Online Users block, simply click on the "Add/send message" envelope opposite their name.)
  2. Type the message in the pop-up box then click on the "Send message" button.

To send a message to selected course participants (for teachers only):

  1. Click on the Participants link in the People block on the course page.
  2. Select participants from the list or use the "Select all" button at the bottom of the list.
  3. Choose "Add/send message" from the "With selected users..." drop-down menu.
  4. Type the message then click the "Preview" button.
  5. Assuming you are satisfied with the message, click the "Send" button.

Reading and replying to messages

When you are sent a message, the Messages window will pop-up. Also, the Messages block will display the name of the person sending the message with a link to read the message. If you have set the email option (see Message Settings below), then you will get a copy of the message in your email after the time you have specified if you are not logged in.

After reading a message, you may type a reply then click on the "Send message" button.

Searching messages

Message window Search tab

In addition to searching for people, the Search tab in the Messages window provides the option to search for keywords, only messages to or from you, and to include in the search people you have previously blocked from contacting you.

Managing contacts

Message window Contacts tab

People may be added to your list of contacts (or blocked from contacting you) by clicking the "Add contact" (or "Block contact") icon opposite their name in the Messages window.

By default the contact list is empty. In order to send a message or to create a shortcut to the person you are sending, go to the Search tab.

Message history

A record of messages sent to/from a person may be obtained by clicking the "History" icon opposite their name in the Messages window.

Message settings

Message window Settings tab

Message settings may be changed via the Settings tab in the Messages window.

Here you can decide on having a popup Message window whenever you get a new message, blocking messages from people who are not on your Contacts list, having an audio signal for a new message, using a HTML editor, or getting email messages when you are offline.

Note: It's possible to set a different email address for receiving copies of messages to the email address in your profile.

See also

Using Moodle forum discussions: