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Add a Checklist Activity in Moodle

The Moodle Checklist module allows teachers to create a "to do" list for students to work through and provides an easy visual representation of what has been accomplished so far. With a Checklist, teachers can monitor progress as students complete items on the list, and students can see a progress bar showing the percentage of the items they have completed.

Checklist Features

The Moodle Checklist has a number of useful features, including:
  • List of items students should complete, with the option to include course activities and resources

  • Progress bar that shows what percentage of the list a student has completed so far

  • Option for students and/or teachers to check-off items

  • Students adding private items and notes to a checklist

  • Due dates for checklist items

Ways to Use the Checklist

There are three major uses of the Checklist activity, as described below. Any individual checklist could offer a blend of these uses.

Teachers can add tasks that students may check off.

In this option, teachers manually add items to a checklist.  Depending on the settings for the activity, students and/or teachers can then manually tick off each item on the list as it is completed.  The teacher can monitor the resulting progress, and the checklist will also display a progress bar to the student.

Teachers can create a Checklist and allow students to add tasks to it.

In this option, teachers allow students to add their own items by adjusting the settings of the checklist.  The tasks a student adds will be visible only to that student, not to the others in the class or even to the teacher.
Note: The student will only be able to add subtasks to a task or heading the teacher has already created.

Use activities and resources in Moodle to automatically populate the Checklist.

In this option, teachers automatically create a to-do list on a Checklist's Edit settings page.  The Show course modules in checklist option will create a list populated either with all activities and resources from the whole course, or just those from the section the Checklist is in.

Add a Checklist to a Moodle Course

Follow these steps to add a Checklist to your Moodle course:
  1. On your course page, click Turn editing on (top right). Editing icons and links will appear.
  2. Locate the Topic or Weekly Section where you want to add the Choice activity. (If you are using the Collapsed topics format, the Section must be open.)
  3. At the bottom right of the Section, click + Add an activity or resource. The Activity chooser will open.
  4. In the Activity chooser, select Checklist and then click Add. The Adding a new Checklist page will open.
  5. On the Adding a new Checklist page, in the Checklist field, enter a name for the activity (required). 
  6. In the Introduction field, provide instructions or background information for your students.
  7. Click the Settings heading to view and adjust the settings for the checklist.
    • User can add their own items:
      Lets you choose whether students can create subtasks under the items you add to the Checklist.
    • Updates by:
      Determines who can manually update a Checklist. Note: The Student and teacher option requires teachers to confirm student input.
    • Add due dates to calendar:
      Allows due dates attached to manually created items to appear in the calendar.
    • Teachers can add comments:
      Allows teachers to add personalized comments on students' individual Checklist items.
    • Maximum grade:
      If you want to make the Checklist ungraded, set this value to zero (0) and make sure the grade category doesn't aggregate by Mean.
    • Email teachers when checklist is complete:
      In our testing, we have not been able to determine exactly what triggers this email notification. We do not advise you to rely on this feature.
    • Show course modules in checklist:
      Makes activities and resources in the current section or entire course appear in the Checklist.
    • Check-off when modules complete:
      Detects certain student activity in a course and automatically checks items in the Checklist. This feature is complex to set up for the first time, and we recommend you contact the Instructional Media Lab before using it (545-2823 or
    • Lock teacher marks:
      When this setting is enabled, once a teacher has saved a 'Yes' mark they will be unable to change it.
  8. Click Save and return to course. 

Add Items to a Checklist

  1. On your course page, click the link to the checklist activity (not the Update icon). The activity will open.
  2. Click the Edit checklist tab to add items to the checklist.
  3. Optional: To allow dates to be added to a new item, click Edit dates, uncheck the Disable box, and use the drop-down menus to set the day, month, and year. 
  4. Enter a name for the item into the blank text field and click Add. The item will appear on the checklist.
  5. Optional: Use the editing icons to adjust the appearance and settings for the item:
    • Click the checkbox icon to toggle an item between appearing as required, optional, or a heading.
    • Click the gear icon to edit the name and due date for an item.
    • Click the square Next text color icon to change the text color of an item.
    • ​Click the green plus (+) icon to insert a new item immediately below the current item.

Manage a Checklist


Students can click on the checklist on your course page and tick any items they have completed.  If you have allowed them to do so, they can click Add your own items then click one of the green plus (+) icons to insert their own, private subtasks associated with particular items on the list.


On your course homepage, you can click on a particular checklist to edit it or to view your students’ progress so far.  If the checklist settings allow it to be updated by teachers (either exclusively, or in addition to students), it can be updated by doing the following:
  1. Click the View Progress tab to see a chart of how the students are currently progressing through the checklist.
  2. Click the Magnifying glass icon to the right of a particular student's name.
  3. Choose Yes or No for each item, then click either Save or Save and show next.