Glossary of Glossary Ideas

Note: You may download the entries for this glossary here. If you wish to use this in your own Moodle course, first make a blank glossary and then follow the instructions for importing glossary entries here.

This was begun as a list of ideas from a chat on creative ideas for using the Moodle Glossary module and was set up by Paula Clough.

Browse the glossary using this index

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Annotated Book Reports

By Mary Parke

Annotated book reports

Students can submit their response to the glossary with concept being their name and title of book; teacher allows rating (by teacher) and comments (by all) so that it is easy for both the instructor to grade the original work (indexed by student name) AND students can share their work for peer review/comments prior to instructor grading.


Biographies Glossary

By A.T.Wyatt

biographies of people in the field (in our case, we did photographers--they added a link for more information and a link to their favorite picture)

Book Reviews

By A.T.Wyatt·

book reviews (with a picture of the cover from one of the big book ordering sites)


Collaborative Uses of Glossary Overview

By Mary Parke

I see the glossary as a powerful tool for enabling student collaboration, peer review, and community building within the course - as well as the traditional sense of defining concepts in a more meaningful way by the instructor. As the glossary can also be exported and imported (reused) over and over, this is a brilliant tool! [as opposed to creating a wiki for the same purpose as the wiki can't be reused over and over w/o restoring entire course w/user data]

Also, with the workshop activity gone from version 1.9 (it was also a little clunky to setup by the instructor!) this still allows for peer collaboration and review instead of just using the discussion forums - and it is indexed!

Collection of Favourite Poems Glossary

By Lesli Smith

I have also started to use it in the last year or so as a database of resources, but this was prior to the release of the database module. I can't say that my voluntary "Collection of Favorite Poems" glossary was wildly successful, but I did have some contributions from unexpected sources. 

Community Directory of Resources Glossary

by Mary Parke -

community directory of resources:
In one of our health courses (on preventing Elder abuse) we setup a glossary for students to contribute resources for assisting the elderly or elder abuse prevention. Students typed the name of the community resource into the concept field and then typed their annotated description into the definition field with a link (if available) to the resource online. Students were instructed to search the glossary first so as not to replicate other students' resources. BUT editing and commenting was allowed so they could add information as a comment to the original posted resource and the original creator could update the original post as needed. This was also graded by enabling ratings.

Course Notes Glossary

by David Sturrock -

Create a glossary for course notes or scenario entries. The glossary is visible to everyone at the top of the course and when they enter the glossary the information text can include hard-coded links to all the entries on a specific topic. This gives a searchable database of course notes or scenario content. Glossary entries can include images, files, multimedia and can also allow comments. Back in the main course area you can then use auto-linking or hard-coded links to send students to specific glossary entries or combinations of entries. The advantage of this is that the links can be inserted anywhere in a Moodle label or web page as text or if hard-coding you can make images links to the content. Although you can't control glossary formats very well you can choose to hide some aspects and to force default display to a single record etc. And of course at the end of the glossary entry you can use auto-linking to send the student direct to the relevant activity or next page. Drawback of using hard-coded links is that you need to change them if you make separate copies of the course or you move the course to a different server.

Course Resources Glossary

by David Sturrock -

I have an idea for using the glossary as a home for course resources.


Database of Articles

 By Tina Rowe

I have not used the glossary as a glossary, but to build a database of articles which includes all of the information that you might get about an article, email, abstract etc.

I like the fact that the item can then be commented on and given keywords. It also builds a useful resource which, as has been made clear in earlier posts, exported.

Debate or Public Speaking

In a similar style to this. For helping students train for debating and public speaking.

Put a list of topics into a glossary and set's up the random glossary entry block. A laptop is set up at the front of the classroom so that the person at the front can see it. Students take it in turns to come up to the front, refresh the page and speak for 1 minute on that topic off the top of their head.

After the class make the glossary open for all to see and their homework is to pick another topic than the one they spoke on and write another 1 min speech for next week.

From Ryan Chadwick


Favorite Websites

 By James Gates 

Favorite websites

  • I suggest that they add favorite websites that they find that are appropriate for the class. THe concept is the name of the site and the definition contains the description and the url. I had done that with the database, as well, but I like the fact that the block can pull from them randomly, etc.  

Feedback FAQ Glossary

by Mary Parke - Friday, April 17, 2009, 11:57 PM

c) FAQs for the course compiled by the instructor from feedback from students in prior term courses


Introduction of Participants Glossary

 By James Gates -

1. Introduce Yourself

  • The Concept is their name and the definition block is a few sentences about themselves - where they live (in general), etc. And, I always suggest that they end it by completing the sentence, "You might be surprised to learn that I...." I always learn so much about my students with that last question.


Job Tips and Tricks Glossary

by Leah Hemeon -

We're just getting into Moodle in my company's e-learning initiative. One of the ways we're trying to encourage employees to go and use the site is by using a glossary as a place to share on the job tips and tricks. We often get people sending mass emails with a system or customer tip and we want to encourage them to use the glossary to compile them. We did turn on the "approval" part as the training team has to check the entries for accuracy before they're displayed. We think this will work because it will be one repository for all tips and it gives credit to those who submitted them.


Language Vocab Glossary with audio files

by Chad Outten - 

For language classess...
we use the glossary activity to:
+enter keyword in Concept field
+in definition field
-add translation
-link to audio file that says the word


Mini Research Projects Glossary

by Randy Orwin -

· A high school science teacher used a glossary for students to create mini research projects on the organs of the body. Each student had to do the research on an organ and then post information, including photos and other graphics in kind of an encyclopedia format. The work the students did was very impressive.

Moodle Tips Glossary

by Tammy Moore -

We are building a master course with tips on using Moodle tools. We are working on using a global glossary so that Random Glossary in course sidebars can display tips coming out from this course. We are thinking this will expand the student's abilities with the tools and encourage teachers to try adding new types of activities in to their courses.


Overview of Topic Glossary

by Andy Diament - 

I've had some successful sessions where I've encouraged students to create as many entries as they can in 20 minutes, as an overview after a topic. We reviewed them afterwards.

I've had glossaries that students have built up themselves over a term or more. Once printed off using the pretty print option, 2 pages per A4 sheet, they look like quite significant revision aids. You could do this with an existing glossary.
Andy D


Problem with Keeping Glossary Data

By A. T. Wyatt - 

· tutorials for photoshop (they uploaded their created image, linked to the tutorial, and gave it a rating for quality)

My only problem was trying to roll the glossary over for the next semester. Student work was lost. I probably didn't know how to do it, but I have to start my courses over with a new course id because I always need to update the quizzes. That messed me up, because I wanted the glossaries to just keep growing over time.
I hope to be inspired myself! Thanks for opening this discussion!

Paula Clough--- April 19, 2009

Export the entries out of the glossary before you reset the course then import them back in... Let me know if you need help with how to do this...


Quiz Questions From Students Glossary

by Randy Orwin - 

· The same high school science teacher used another glossary to have students create three quiz questions from the research that they did in the organ study glossary. This glossary was setup so that the students were given one of the Moodle quiz format types, and they created quiz questions matching one of the import formats. The glossary was set so that teacher approval was required before any posts were live so students couldn't see each others questions. After all the questions were submitted, the teacher exported them into a text document and imported all the questions into the quiz module and then tested the students. It worked flawlessly.


By James Gates - 

3. Inspirational/Motivational Quotes

  • The concept is the short description of the quote, such as "Be Yourself", "You can do it!", etc and the description field contains the quote and who said it.


Rateable Recipe Archive Glossary

by Mikko Turunen -

Rateable recipe archive for students of international cooking!


Sharing Glossaries With Other Classes

by Frances Bell -  

Also if you are able to make the glossary public you can share it with another class. A blogging glossary developed by masters students was made available to first year students as a resource for their research on their own blogging assignment.

Sharing Relevant Internet Links Glossary

by Lucy Mellersh - 

I'm using the glossary as a place for the students to collect and share relevant Internet links.

Student Independent Vocab Look Glossary

by Mary Parke 

An art history instructor created a teacher glossary of terms with auto-linking on so that she didn't have to interrupt the flow of the course lessons and lectures by stopping and defining each new term. Students could just click on the term (if they needed assistance) and go directly to the glossary (setup using encyclopedia format so some entries could also have a visual representation of the term)

Student of the Week Glossary

by Randy Orwin 

· A 5th grade teacher uses a glossary in conjunction with the random glossary entry block to create students of the week. He has added a photo of each student to a glossary, without identification, and then each week the random glossary block shows the photo of that student as student of the week. He has the block setup so that it just goes through the list of students in order so everybody gets a turn. The students love it!

Student Poetry Glossary

by Randy Orwin - 

· Along the same lines as above, a teacher has students create poetry in a glossary and then pushes the poems to the home page using the random glossary entry block.


Tips of the Day

by Mary Parke - 

d) "Tips" - another Health/Nutrition instructor had a list of frequently used terms and concepts in her course that students always struggled with so she created a Tip of the Day glossary and fed it to the Random Glossary Entry block so a tip would appear each day on the homepage.

Tutorials for Photoshop Glossary

A. T. Wyatt - 

· tutorials for photoshop (they uploaded their created image, linked to the tutorial, and gave it a rating for quality)


Vocab or Quotes Daily Word/Quote of the Day Glossary

by Randy Orwin - 

· Another great idea is to use the random glossary entry block to do quotes of the day or vocab word of the day.

Vocabulary Glossary with Pictures

by Lesli Smith - 

I have used the glossary in my classroom in mostly the traditional sense as a resource for vocabulary words. I typically have each of my students submit one word to a large group resource glossary, and each of their entries must contain the definition, part of speech, an original sentence using the word correctly, and some type of mnemonic or visual device to help classmates remember its meaning. (Two of the most amusing ones, to me anyway, attached.)

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