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Email in Moodle

Moodle can send email messages in a few different ways. Automated email notifications can be sent from certain activities such as Forums. The Quickmail block can be used by instructors (and if instructors allow, by students) to send email to course members. 

Note: Moodle sends emails, but does not have an inbox where you can receive email.

What are the different ways Moodle sends email?

Email Notifications

Moodle will send notification emails to inform users of particular activities:

  • Users receive an email notification when a new post is made on Announcements, a Forum, or particular Forum topic to which they are subscribed, and users can control whether they receive a separate email for each notification, or one email digest each day. See How can I change my Moodle subscription settings? (below).
  • Students receive an email confirmation when they submit an Assignment.
  • Instructors have the option to receive emails when students submit assignments (disabled by default).

Quickmail (Instructors and TAs. Students only if enabled)

The Quickmail block (optional, but available by default on Moodle courses) can be used to send email messages to individual course members, groups (if already set up in the course), class sections (in multi-section courses), or all participants in the course.
Note: Quickmail is not affected by individual course members' Subscription settings: each message is sent immediately and will be separate from an email digest.

  • By default, use of Quickmail is limited to instructors and TAs and Quickmail is hidden from students.
  • Instructors have the option to make Quickmail available for students.

For more on Quickmail, see The Quickmail Block in Moodle.

How can I change my Moodle subscription settings? 

Moodle makes it easy to keep track of your course’s online discussions by using email notifications. Improper settings can result in too many emails (e.g., you may be able to opt out of Forum subscriptions).

To learn how to control these notifications and keep your email inbox uncluttered:

Where does Moodle send emails?

There are no email inboxes in Moodle. The email address used depends on whether you are a student or instructor:

  • Undergraduate and graduate students receive all mail from Moodle at their UMass Amherst email address.
  • Faculty and staff receive email notifications from Moodle at their preferred (published) email address from SPIRE.
  • In Quickmail, instructors may set an option to receive replies to messages sent from Quickmail at an alternate email address, such as a Course IT account email, or an OWL email.
    Note: Quickmail alternate email settings only affect messages sent from Quickmail and do not affect the Reply-to for instructor posts on Announcements or other emails generated in Moodle. For details, see The Quickmail Block in Moodle.

How do I keep people from seeing my email address in Moodle?

Any Moodle user, including students, can hide their email address from other users in their Moodle preferences. When your email address is hidden, you can still receive emails sent from Moodle, but your "reply to" address will be: Do not reply to this email <>. This setting will affect all messages sent from you in Moodle, including Quickmail.

Can I send an email to someone directly from Moodle?

  • Use Quickmail (Instructors only, by default; students, if instructor allows)
    The Quickmail block can send emails to individual course members, groups or the entire class. You can also enter email address(es) to send messages to others outside the course. See The Quickmail Block in Moodle.

What is the best way for instructors to email an entire class?

  • Use Quickmail
    The best option is to use the Quickmail block, available by default into Moodle courses. The advantage of using Quickmail over other methods is that you can select multiple recipients by role, group, or class section. See The Quickmail Block in Moodle.
  • Use a Class Email List
    Alternatively, you can set up a class email list through SPIRE. See Manage Your Class Email Lists for instructions on how to create and use a class email list. If you do not want students to be able to send messages to the list, see Set Up Class Email Lists as Announcement Tool to learn how to restrict posting access.
  • Post an announcement on the Announcements Forum
    The Moodle Announcements is useful for general announcements to the entire class, and by default, subscription for Announcements is set to Forced meaning emails of announcements will be sent to all course members.
    Note: Some course members may receive Moodle notifications as a daily digest. For time-sensitive announcements (e.g., class cancelations due to inclement weather), the best way to contact students in a timely manner is to use Quickmail or a SPIRE Class Email List.

Can students use email in Moodle?

The Quickmail block can be configured by the instructor to allow students to send email to course members. By default, this option is disabled and Quickmail is configured separately within each course. See The Quickmail Block in Moodle.

Can other Moodle users use email in Moodle?

Instructors can add the Access Quickmail Block role for particular course members who normally would not be able to use Quickmail. For example, a departmental assistant with the role of Course Designer with the added role of Access Quickmail Block, could send email to course members. For details, see Assign Roles to Individuals in Your Moodle Course.