Chat Activity [Faculty]


The Moodle ISU chat tool allows you and your students to communicate synchronously using an instant messaging type format.  This tool is commonly used for creating virtual office hours or online chat class meetings.

This Guide Will Help You to:

Add a New Chat Activity

  1. In the top right corner of your course, toggle Edit mode on

  2. Locate the week or section in which you wish to add the new chat activity

  3. Select Add an activity or resource

  4. Select Chat and a new Chat activity will appear

For more information see, Adding an Activity in Moodle ISU [Faculty]

Modify the Edit Settings


  1. In the Name of this chat room field, type the name of the chat. This is what students will see on the course homepage.

  2. In the Description text field, type any information about the chat.

  3. Select the box if you want the description to display on the course page.

Name of chat room with box to enter name; Description field where chat room description can be written; Display on course page with checkbox below description field

Chat sessions

  • From the Next Chat Time drop-down menus, select the desired dates and times of the next chat session. 

Note: changing the desired dates does not stop students from accessing the chat and posting

  • Use the Repeat/publish session times drop-down menu to select how the chat activity will repeat/publish.

    • Don’t publish any chat times - The dates of the Next chat time setting will not be published to the Moodle ISU calendar.

    • No repeats – publish the specified time only -  Only the time specified in the Next chat time fields will be added to the calendar.

    • At the same time every day - This will publish the designated chat time everyday based on the time you selected for the Next chat time in the Moodle ISU calendar.

    • At the same time every week -  This will publish a chat time for the same day and time every week in the Moodle ISU calendar.

  • From the Save past sessions drop-down menu, select how long you would like to keep transcripts of this chat activity.

  • From the Everyone can view past sessions drop-down menu, select if students can also view past sessions.

Common module settings

Choose whether to Show or Hide the activity

For more information see, Common module settings

Restrict access

For more information see, Restrict access

Activity completion

For more information see, Activity completion


For more information see, Using tags


For more information see, Competencies

Save settings

  • Select Save and display to go to the assignment.

  • Select Save and return to course to be taken back to the course homepage.

  • Select Cancel to discard changes.

Note: The new activity will always appear at the bottom of the list within the week/topic you have chosen.

Use the Chat Activity

  1. Select the chat activity on your course homepage

  2. Select Enter the chat or Use more accessible interface to begin participating in the chat.

    1.  The first option will display a chat window: 

      1. see the participants on the left use the Talk to chat with a specific person or use the Beep to get the person's attention. 

      2.  At the bottom use the text box to enter text and when finished, select send

Chat messages appear on the main part of the screen and participants are on the right; A text box to type a message is at the bottom with a Send button to the right of the box

Note: You can change the theme of the chat window to bubble, compact, or course theme.

  1. The second option will display a chat window: See the participants at the top, Use send messages tex tbox to enter text and select submit. To see new responses select the refresh button. 

Chat window with participants at the top left and chat box to type into beneath the Send message heading. Submit and Refresh buttons are below the chat box; Messages heading is at the bottom with messages and time stamps below it.

Note: This option is best for those using screen readers or have low internet connectivity

  1. To leave the chat, close the window. 

  2. View Past Chat Sessions - allows you to view previous sessions as well as export past chat transcripts.

Time and date stamp appears at the top and participants are under it with number of chats submitted for that session in parenthesis after their names; A dropdown to choose either File download or Google drive is at the bottom left and Export to portfolio button is to the right of it

Using Additional Chat Features

  • Smileys - Any smiley faces (emoticons) that you can type elsewhere in Moodle ISU can also be typed in the chat and they will be displayed correctly.

    • For example, :-) =

  • Links - URLs will be turned into links automatically.

  • Emoting - You can start a line with "/me " to emote.

    • For example, if your name is Amy and you type "/me laughs!" then everyone will see "Amy laughs!"

  • Beeps - You can send a beep sound to other people by selecting the beep link next to their name.

    • A useful shortcut to beep all the people in the chat at once is to type beep all.

  • HTML - You can use HTML code in your text to do things like insert images, play sounds or format your text.

Seek Further Assistance

For additional assistance, please contact the ITRC at (208) 282-5880 or

For more information, please visit Chat Activity


Creative Commons License

This work was created by the Idaho State University Instructional Technology Resource Center and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.


Article ID: 50509
Fri 3/16/18 4:48 PM
Wed 11/15/23 3:13 PM

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A number of different types of activities can be added to your Moodle ISU course. Activities generally require an action from the student.