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Link from Moodle to Your OWL Course

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The OWL Link in Moodle enables your students to access course activities in OWL directly from Moodle. Students who use this Link automatically receive an OWL account and are added to the roster of your OWL section.

Grades are not synced between OWL and Moodle, but instructors who use the Moodle Gradebook can download grades from OWL as a .csv file, then import them into Moodle. For more, see Import Student Data to the Moodle Gradebook.

Important! You Must Recreate OWL Links Each Semester

Both Moodle and OWL use unique course shells each semester. If you reuse a Moodle course you taught during a previous semester (see Reuse a Moodle Course Using Import), links to OWL will not be included in the import. You must create and configure a new OWL Link in the new Moodle course. 

Part 1—Request your Moodle and OWL Courses

  1. Request your Moodle course in SPIRE:
    Log in to SPIRE, then go to Faculty Home > Moodle Course Request. You will receive a confirmation email when your Moodle course is ready to use. For more information, see Request Your Moodle Course - Overview.
    Note: It will take at least one business day for the Moodle administrators to create your course and send you the email.
  2. Request your OWL course
    Send a request to Make sure you indicate that you want to use a Moodle-OWL link for the course. You’ll be notified via email when your OWL course has been created.

Part 2—Add the OWL Link to Your Moodle Course

Note: Every time you reuse a Moodle course from a previous semester, you will have to create and configure a new OWL Link.

  1. After you have been notified that your OWL and Moodle courses are ready, log in to Moodle and open your course.
  2. On your Moodle course page, click Turn editing on (top right). Editing icons and links will appear.
  3. In the course Section where you will add the link to OWL, click + Add an activity or resource. The Activity chooser will open.
  4. Select External Tool and click Add. The Adding a New External Tool page opens.
  5. In the Activity name box, type "OWL Link".
  6. From the Preconfigured tool drop-down list, choose UMass OWL.
    Leave the remaining fields as they are.  Please do not make other changes on this page. Editing other fields could break the OWL link.
  7. Click Save and return to course. The OWL Link should appear on your Moodle course page.

Part 3—Submit the Configuration Information

We need to configure your Moodle course to connect to your OWL section and match your Moodle instructor account to your OWL account. You need to fill out a brief form which collects this information.

  1. On your Moodle course page, click the Owl Link. OWL will open in a new tab or window (Note: Depending on your browser settings the window may open in front of, or behind the Moodle window). The first time you open the link, Moodle displays the Unconfigured Link page.
  2. Complete and submit the Unconfigured Link form. (You will be asked for your name, email, OWL login, and OWL Course and Section.  You may also leave additional comments for the OWL administrators.) A confirmation message will display.
  3. You'll be notified by email when the OWL Link has been configured and is ready to use.
  4. Once you have received the confirmation email from OWL, when you or your students click OWL Link, the OWL course will open in a new window.