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Keywords: question, response, anonymous, voting, hot, flipping, polling, classrooms, upvote


What is it?

Hot Question is used to create a list of popular questions or topics from a group. You ask participants to submit questions or responses to your question, which may be in relation to a recorded lecture, a topical issue, a reading, or ideas for what to cover in a revision class. Participants can then submit questions related to that topic, which appear in an ordered list (newest questions appear first). Participants may then 'rate' others' questions by clicking a Thumbs Up icon - this gives the item heat. The more votes, the hotter the question and the higher up the list it will appear.

Why use it?

This activity allow students to actively engage in class wide discussions, with the benefit of being able to ask questions / make comments anonymously. It is especially useful for large cohorts, since it allows a group to decide collectively which topics are most important. It can help you identify any problem areas that your students are sturggling to understand and you can plan your subsequent classes to address these. It is ideal for getting feedback from students on what to cover in revision classes.

Who can use it?

  • Tutors and course admins can add Hot Questions.
  • Students and participants can contribute questions/topics and vote for others.

Before I start...

Ensure your students' understand how they should use the activity.  If you choose to allow them to post anonymously, make this explicit.

How do I set one up?

  1. Click the Turn editing on button in the top-right of your page.
  2. Go to the topic you would like to add the Hot Question to, then from the Add an activity or resource drop down select Hot Question.
  3. Give the activity a name.
  4. Decide whether you want students to be able to post anonymously and enable this if you do.
  5. Click Save and display.
  6. Add your question/statement here and click Post.

Anonymous posts

There are not many configuration options for Hot Question, but one is anonymous posting for participants. When enabled they can chose to hide their identity from other participants.You may find this useful if you are asking student for feedback on complex or difficult to understand subjects or are trying to encourage students who may be worried about posting a "stupid" question. 

Further help

Further guidance on Hot Question is available from moodledocs.

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


Whilst students can post anonymously, their activity will still appear in the Moodle logs.

Examples and case studies

This is what a hot question looks like. This example is asking students to post any questions they have about a video they have watched. You could also display the video within the hot question, alongside the instructions. UCL has a number of video subscription services you can draw upon. See: 

ELDG 2015 - 2016; using Moodle (Hot Questions) in the classroom: Quick Guide

ELDG 2015 - 2016; using Moodle (Hot Questions) in the classroom: Long Guide

Questions & Answers


Further information

  • Take the questions and create a Wordle that will show repeated words in larger text.
  • Ask questions on a Lecturecast recording, polling the questions asked and answering them in the next session.
  • Gather feedback during a session on certain aspects and with students rating the most important.
  • Establish an open-approach to asking questions, promoting students to considering other people's questions in lieu of their own.


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