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printKeywords: certificate, certify, certification, record of achievement.

The Custom Certificate will replace the Certificate activity from Monday 23rd September 2019. Existing certificates will need to be replaced by Custom Certificates before this date.

What is it?

Moodle Custom Certificates create customised PDF certificates for your students.

Why use it?

 Certificates can be used as a record of achieving or to recognise an obtaining a certain level with the course, or even completing a training course. They should not replace any official or credit-bearing certification at UCL.

Who can use it?

Tutor and Course Administrator can set up and issue Certificates.

Before I start...

  • Although you can design your certificate in Moodle, you may want to finalise your layout and  images beforehand in Microsoft Word.
  • When using images be aware of your Copyright obligations.  You can read more on the Copyright for eLearning webpage

Meeting the baseline

The UCL E-Learning Baseline suggests the following for Orientation:

  • 2.2 Explain participation requirements:
    • Identify which activities are compulsory and optional.
    • Provide an indicator of effort (such as timings or page counts) for all compulsory tasks.
    • Explain how students are expected to use UCL and external e-learning tools. This PowerPoint Induction template provides a starting point. Wholly online courses might provide this information as a screencast video, with a voice over.
    • Link to instructions for any e-learning tools that students are expected to use.

The Assessment category suggests that you should:

  • 4.1 Provide an assessment outline with a clear description of the module assessment, including schedule, criteria and submission details. To avoid duplication this might include a link to a module webpage.

How do I set one up?

  1. Click the Turn editing on button in the top-right of your page.
  2. In the topic where you want the certificate to appear, click on the Add an activity or resource drop down link and select Custom Certificate.
  3. Provide a meaningful certificate Name, as this is what students will click on to view it.
  4. The Description will be displayed to users when they click on the certificate link. This should clearly describe the requirements that will make the certificate available to students. e.g. You need to achieve at least 50% on all quizzes to receive a certificate.
  5. Select the Options you want. Note. You can use the question mark icon to view a description of each option.
  6. There is a Group mode and Grouping option (click on the Show Advanced button if it is not visible) to release the certificate to specific Moodle groups. Information on how to do this is given in M13- Groups and groupings.
  7. You can also choose to apply date and grade conditions to your certificate. Information on how to do this is given in M35 - Activity completion and Conditional Release
  8. Click Save and Display
  9. In the Administration block, click Edit certificate.
  10. This page allows you to customise the name and size of your certificate. You can also add elements to your certificate, such as images, background images, borders, the student's name, grade, grade item name etc. Alternatively, you can load a template certificate, which you can then customise. Note. contact digi-ed@ucl.ac.uk to discuss template options. 

    If you add an image based element, such as the background image, you will have the option to upload your own image. Once you have uploaded the image, click save, you will then need to edit the element again to select the image you've just uploaded.

  11. When you have added all your elements, click Reposition elements to arrange your elements. You can either drag and drop an element, or click an element to open up a menu of options, including to re-size text or to enter specific X and Y coordinates for elements.

    Elements can appear outside of the certificate frame on the Reposition elements page. We recommend you set X and Y values to make sure your certificate elements are well presented. If you use the standard A4 sizing of 210mm height and 297mm width, you can centre an element by setting its X position to 105mm or its Y position to 148mm. You should always view your certificate in pdf format to make sure your certificate looks as desired.

  12. When you have finalised the layout of your certificate, click Save and close.
  13. Finally, to preview your certificate as a pdf, click Save changes and preview.

Further help

Further guidance on Custom Certificates is available from Moodle Docs.

If you find any inaccurate or missing information you can even update this yourself (it's a communal wiki).

If you have a specific question about the tool please contact the Digital Education team.


- None at this time.

Examples and case studies

- None at this time.

Questions & Answers

- None at this time.

Further information

Administering your certificate: The student can obtain the certificate by clicking on the certificate link on your course home page. If students have met the conditions (if any) they will be able to access the certificate and a display page will allow them to Review your certificate. If they have not completed the requirements Moodle will display a warning.

Verify certificate: Each certificate has a unique code. This feature allows you to check a code corresponds to an authentic course certificate.