Collapsed Topics course format

Revision as of 19:27, 10 December 2011 by Gareth Barnard (talk | contribs) (FAQ)

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The Collapsed Topics course format is a contributed code module. The format is similar to the standard Topics format except that all topics (except '0') can be 'toggled' on and off. This reduces clutter in courses that have a large number of topics, lots of content in the topics or a combination of the two.

Collapsed Topics format example


You can download the format from the Modules and Plugins Database or by going to GitHub and cloning the repository alternatively by selecting one of the downloads for your version of Moodle if the database is unavailable. Full installation instructions are in the included 'Readme.txt' file.



To select the format, simply choose it from the list of course formats in the course settings. To show / hide a topic just click on its toggle.

Course Format

Setting the Toggle Text

The toggle text is set by editing the section description (Course_sections#Editing_sections). As shown below...

For Moodle 1.8 and 1.9 just type in the editor box...

Summary description Moodle 1.8 and 1.9

For Moodle 2.0, tick off 'Use default section name' and type in the 'Section name' box. This allows the summary to be shown as it normally is in the Topics course format (Course_homepage#Topic_format_example).

Summary description Moodle 2.0

Toggle State

When refreshing the page, the state of the 'toggles' is remembered. This is on a per browser session per course basis for as long as the browser remains open. If you would like it to persist longer, please follow the instructions in the included 'Readme.txt' file.

Changing the look


Most of the formatting is contained within the file 'topics_collapsed.css' which is fully commented to facilitate easy manipulation of specific elements. For example, if you found that in your particular web browser the 'Topic x ' text was too big...

Topic text too big

Then you can add an addtional 'font-size:0.6em;' to the 'tr.cps td.cps_centre' class.

Changing the css

Per Theme Changes

You can set a different look globally or on a per theme basis by changing the following css in 'collapsed_topics.css'. Non-standard colours used to illustrate the point.

Per theme css

If you want a per theme look for when you allow your users to choose their own theme, move the css shown and place in your theme's css files and change as desired.

The Arrow

If you want to change the look and style of the arrow, simply change 'arrow_down.png' and 'arrow_up.png'.


Q. How do I report an issue with Collapsed Topics?

A. Raise an issue on Moodle Tracker or post a discussion on the Moodle Course Formats Forum

Q. Is Collapsed Topics Moodle 2.0, Moodle 2.1 & Moodle 2.2 compatible?

A. Yes. It incorporates a change where the section name of the topic summary is used instead of the summary itself to form the words on the toggle.


Collapsed Topics has been developed by and is maintained by Gareth Barnard with invaluable input from:

See also