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Add Images in Moodle

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In Moodle, you can add an image anywhere you see the Text editor toolbar.

  • Instructors can use images in activity descriptions (e.g., the description for an Assignment, Quiz questions, a post to a Forum, or in a Page resource).
  • Students can add images, when posting in a forum, submitting a text-based assignment, taking a quiz, contributing to a database activity, etc.
  • Note: You can drag and drop an image into the text editor tool bar any time you see it. 

Add an Image Using the File Picker

  1. In the Text editor toolbar, click the Insert or edit image icon (Add an image icon screenshot) to open the Image properties window.Screen Shot of Text Editor

  2. In the Image properties window, click Browse repositories to open the File picker.

  3. In the File picker window:
    • To upload a file from your computer, on the left side of the window, click Upload a file.
    • To use a file already uploaded to Moodle, click Embedded files, Server files, Recent files, Server Files, or  Content Bank (at left).
  4. In the text boxes, enter the file name, author, and creative license, then click Upload this file to add your image and return to the Image properties window. 
  5. In the Image properties window:
    Screen shot of image properties window (click to enlarge)
    • To Describe this image for someone who cannot see it, (required) enter a brief description of the image, or select the check box for This image is decorative only. Describing each image helps to make your content accessible to all.
      Note: You cannot insert an image unless you provide a brief description of the image in Describe this image for someone who cannot see it or select This image is decorative only.
    • To resize your image, check Auto size, then enter a new width or height. (When you click away from the entry box, the other dimension auto-completes, ensuring your image displays with proportional dimensions).
    • Use the Alignment drop-down menu to select an alignment according to the text. 
  6. At the bottom of the window, select Save image to insert it into the Editor window.
    Note: You can reopen to the Image properties window by double-clicking an image to adjust the alignment, size, etc.

Add an Image Using a URL

If an image is on another website, you can embed it using its URL.

  1. In the Text editor toolbar, select Insert or edit image (Add an image icon screenshot) to open the Image properties window.Screen Shot of Text Editor

  2. In the Enter URL field, enter the complete URL for your image.
    Important: Be sure to include the http:// or https:// prefix.
    (For example: http://blogs.umass.edu/instruct/files/2015/04/a-grade.jpg)
  3. Set additional image properties:
    Screen Shot of image properties window when using URL (click to enlarge)
    • To Describe this image for someone who cannot see it, (required) enter a brief description of the image, or select the check box for This image is decorative only. Describing each image helps to make your content accessible to all.
      Note: You cannot insert an image unless you provide a brief description of the image in Describe this image for someone who cannot see it or select This image s decorative only.
    • To resize your image, check Auto size, then enter a new width or height. (When you click away from the entry box, the other dimension auto-completes, ensuring your image displays with proportional dimensions).
    • Use the Alignment drop-down menu to align your image according to the text.
  4. At the bottom of the window, select Save image to insert it into the Editor window. 
    Note: You can reopen the Image properties window by double clicking on an image in the Editor.

Align an Image

The alignment of images in Moodle is configured in the Image properties window of each image.

  1. In the Editor entry box, double-click the image, then select Image properties to open this window.
  2. The Alignment drop-down menu gives you an option to select either Top, Middle, Bottom, Left or Right alignment.
    Screen Shot demonstrating Alignment options (click to enlarge)
  3. Once you have selected the Alignment option, click Save image to close the Image properties window and insert the image into the Editor window aligned as set.

Reduce an Image's Size

Recommended Image Dimensions

Moodle scales each image automatically to fit within the available area the image is placed in, such as a forum post, label, or block. This makes images "responsive" (meaning that even a very wide image can fit on the screen, whether viewed on a mobile phone, tablet or large computer display).

While Moodle also allows you to force the size that an image appears on a page, the image file still downloads at it's original dimensions. Therefore:

  • If you upload a large image (e.g., from a camera) and set it to display very small, page-load time will be slow.
  • If you upload a very small image and set it in Moodle to appear larger than its actual pixel dimensions, the image will appear blurry.

We strongly recommend that you resize an image before uploading to Moodle. For help learning how to resize images with the image editing software on your computer, consider accessing Lynda.com (available for free with a Boston Public Library eCard). Instructors can also contact the Instructional Media Lab for training.

Image Use Image type Pixel Dimensions
Thumbnail image A small version of an image that links to a larger version ~ 100 pixels wide
Banner image A wide, short image for example, in a Section summary or Label 1600 pixels wide
Image in a Block An image placed in an Moodle HTML block No more than 340 pixels wide
Illustration An image placed within a page of text. 250 to 400 pixels wide
Full sized image The largest possible image to display in Moodle
(with blocks docked)
1600 pixels wide


Set Image Size Attributes

To force the maximum dimensions that an image displays:

  1. In the Editor text box, add a new image or double-click an already existing image and select Image properties to open its window.
  2. In the Image properties window locate Size. On the right, select Auto size to prevent distorting the image.
  3. Change the value inside one of the boxes to shrink the image (we do not recommend enlarging). The editor automatically adjusts the other dimension proprtionally (width x height) .
    Image Size Options Moodle 2.8 SS
  4. To confirm your changes, click Save image to close the Image properties window and insert the image into the Editor window.

Note: This process only changes the size an image is displayed in Moodle. It does not affect the image file. This process can be repeated as many times as needed without affecting the original dimensions of the uploaded file.