Update profile

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Note: You are currently viewing documentation for Moodle 2.0. Up-to-date documentation for the latest stable version is available here: Update profile.

Location: Administration > Users > Accounts > Add a new user or Browse list of users, or by choosing the Edit profile tab from one's own profile.

Updating Your Profile

The fields are divided into 3 sections - General, Picture & Optional which are all explained below. Note that some settings are 'advanced', so you may need to click the 'Show Advanced' button on the right to see all the settings. The advanced settings are indicated below.

Remember to click 'Update profile' when you have finished.


The first section contains fields that must be completed:

First name & Surname

These are self-explanatory. These names will identify you everywhere in your Moodle courses.

Email address

The email address should be an address that you check regularly. It is used for acknowledgements and announcements from Moodle, including messages from Forums that you are subscribed to. It is also the address that is displayed to other users of Moodle, depending on your 'Email display' setting (below).

Email display

This controls the visibility of your email address to others. The three settings are self-explanatory but please note 'Hide my email address from everyone' only hides it from students. Teaching staff and other staff with editing access will always be able to see your email address.

Email activated

You can either enable or disable emails being sent to an address. Note that if this is disabled, you will not receive any email whatsoever from the site. This is not recommend, as you may miss important course-related messages.

Email format (advanced)

There are two formats: "Pretty HTML format" (messages will be formatted) and "Plain text format" (plain text with no formatting).

Email digest type (advanced)

This setting determines how you receive any posts from Forums to which you are subscribed, allowing you to receive messages individually or on a daily basis.

Forum auto-subscribe (advanced)

This setting lets you decide if you want email copies of posts that are added to forums. If you set this to subscribe, the system will automatically email you copies of new posts in forums that you post in, unless you manually override it when posting.

Forum tracking (advanced)

Enabling forum tracking means highlighting the posts you have not read yet, which should improve your forum navigation.

When editing text (advanced)

This can usually be left on "Use HTML editor (some browsers only)". This allows for text formatting options, but requires newer browsers. If you find your browser is not letting you edit text, change this setting to "Use standard web forms".

AJAX and JavaScript (advanced)

This determines whether the Moodle interface will use advanced navigation features such as drag-and-drop, that require AJAX and JavaScript to function. These features can cause problems on some browsers so you might prefer to turn them off.

Screen Reader (advanced)

If you use a screen reader, this setting should be set to 'Yes'. (A screen reader is a form of 'assistive technology' used by blind and partially-sighted users to interpret what is displayed on the screen).

The screenreader variable is used in:

  • /mod/chat/ - if screenreader is enable, chat window will be set to use gui_basic
  • /mod/course/report/progress/ - check for svg to rotate text
  • /admin/mnet/mnet_themes.html - use to ignore or print theme images
  • /user/ - set the value for screenreader
  • /grade/report/grader/ - use to set fixed layout
  • /question/type/multianswer/ - used to print feedback icon and print an gap icon for question (MDL-7497)

City/town & Country

Add your location.


This field is used to convert time-related messages on the system (such as assignment deadlines) from the local timezone (the time in London) to the correct time in whichever zone you have selected.

Preferred language and theme (advanced)

You can view Moodle in several different languages and colour themes, which you can select via these two options. Note: changing the preferred language only affects the Moodle interface, not the course content!


In this field you can enter some text about yourself, be it information about your studies, hobbies, qualifications or anything else.


This section is optional and allows you to choose your own profile picture. Your current picture is shown, if you have already chosen one.

New picture

The Browse button allows you to choose a new picture for your profile. The picture must be in JPG or PNG format (ie the names will usually end in .jpg or .png).

To upload the image, click the "Browse" button on this editing page, and select the image from your hard disk.

NOTE: Make sure that the file is not larger than the maximum size listed, or it will not be uploaded.

Then click "Update my Profile" at the bottom - the image file will be cropped to a square and resized down to 100x100 pixels.

When you are taken back to your profile page, the image might not appear to have changed. If this is so, just use the "Reload" button in your browser.


There are several optional fields (all advanced) allowing you to add further details to your profile such as contact details and your website.

Custom Profile Categories

If any custom user profile categories and fields have been created on your Moodle site, they will be listed at the bottom of the Admin >Accounts>User profile fields

Adding a new user

The add a new user page allows you to manually create a new user account. If you create a test account, you can use a made-up email address.

The required field must be entered before the user will be accepted by Moodle. The required fields in a standard Moodle install are: Username, New password, Surname, Email address, City/town, Select a country.

Validity checks on the required field are performed. For example, usernames can only contain alphabetical letters in lowercase, numbers, hypen '-', underscore '_', period '.', or at sign '@'. So username of joe_smith, joe.smith and joesmith123@myisp.com are permissible; however, username for JohnSmith is not permissible. The email address should be in the format of a valid email (for example, joe.smith@myisp.com). If password complexity requirements are enabled by the site administrator, the new password field is also checked to ensure it complies with those requirements. See Password policy for more information.

Other fields that are part of a user's profile can also be filled out when the user is created. Some of the profile fields can be revealed by pressing the "Show Advanced" button.

The new user information is saved by pressing the "Update user" button near the bottom of the form.

Note: You can always create new accounts manually, regardless of which authentication method you are using.

Updating a user profile

Users with the capability moodle/user:update are able to update another user's profile i.e. in addition to being able to edit the profile, all settings (username, password, authentication method, force new password etc.) may be changed.

Account disabling

An account may be disabled by setting the authentication method to "No login". The account email may not be used to create another account.