Themes: Fordson

Maintained by Picture of Chris Kenniburg Chris Kenniburg
Fordson | A child theme of Boost provides a specialized enhanced homepage, multiple style presets, innovative user dashboards in courses, and other features that are focused on providing a better user experience. Try out Fordson and show some love by clicking "favourite" ( ♥ ) !
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About Fordson

Fordson attempts to streamline the process of going from the homepage to enrolling in a course so that learners can engage with the content quickly and efficiently.  Fordson provides many functional enhancements to the homepage and navigation of Moodle in theme administration area.  Customization, unique style presets, and a variety of useful tools built into Fordson makes it ideal for K-12 education, colleges, and businesses.

Instructions and Overview of Settings

Check out the latest documentation and information on Fordson settings and presets:
View Fordson Documentation

Introducing our newest preset: Dearborn Public Schools

Our newest namesake preset is something we were working on for our own site and is now part of the Fordson 1.6.0 theme.  Sleek, stylish, and built to appeal to K-12 and beyond.  This preset goes full-width with content, only uses custom course images on the main course page, and has unique styling touches throughout.  Be sure to checkout the Fordson Documentation for the best theme settings for each of the presets.

Version 1.6.4 New Feature:  Frontpage My Courses sort by Last Access

You can now sort frontpage My Courses by the last access for a more personalized experience.  The most recently accessed courses will be displayed first in the list. Watch the video below.

Course Management dashboard.  Expand and collapse the menu

Course Management Panel

This panel appears for teachers so that they can manage the course.  This is a replacement for the links commonly found in Course Administration block.  We took those links and grouped them so that they are logically displayed and a teacher can see everything at a glance.

Student Dashboard

Student Dashboard

Students can quickly access important course information in the "This Course" dashboard.  It contains a course description, teacher contacts, grades, course completion status, and activity links. 

Custom Login Page for Fordson

Custom Login Page

Create a custom login page to market your site and provide information to students.  In order to activate the custom login page you must force users to login.  To customize the page you can find all the settings and information on the Fordson Administration page under Appearance > Themes > Fordson > Custom Login Page.  Add text, upload photos, choose icons and more can all be customized right from the theme admin pages.   

Custom Homepage

Fordson supports a slideshow, custom Icon Navigation buttons, Marketing tiles, custom text boxes, alerts, and more. Install the optional "Easy Enrollment" plugin and you can enroll students to any course directly from the homepage using a 6 digit code(Auto-generated) or a QR Code (Auto-generated).     The auto generated enrollment codes are displayed on the course page for teachers.  There is a button at the top of the page. 

Topic progress bar

Course Topic Progress Report

Utilize course completion in a course and set the display options to "Show one topic per page" and Fordson will show a progress bar based on the topic completion status.    

Customize Activities and Resources

Want to showcase most used or top activities?  Fordson makes it easy!  Not only can you create a special list of activities you can also control the ordering and even hide activities from teachers. Managers and Site Admins can see all activities.     

Custom Course Category Display

We made it possible to switch how courses in your site are displayed when viewing the course categories.  Pick from 4 different layouts to further customize the look and feel of your Moodle site using Fordson.   

K-12 Preset

7 Style Presets 

Style presets allow you to instantly change the look and feel of your Moodle site.  We have a preset for corporate users, K-12, University, e-Learning, and our default universal preset.  Be sure to checkout our documentation which recommends theme settings for each preset. Fordson Documentation

Clean, Simple, Efficient

  • Customizable navigation: Nav Drawer, My Courses, Homepage Icon Bar, Add Activities & Resources panel, Teacher and Student Course Dashboards can all be customized in Fordson
  • Customized Homepage that has creative features when needed but can be used to create a minimal, focused, and distraction free homepage
  • Out of the box a clean, refined, and stylish appearance with minimal configuration
  • Built for all screen sizes
  • Seven Preset Styles that instantly change the look and feel of the site.  Continue to enhance the look of your site by changing colors, adding logos and images, slideshows, and custom textboxes
  • Easy Enrollment plugin integration takes students from the homepage to learning with course enrollment codes.  

Easy Enrollment Add-On

Install the Easy Enrollment add-on and Fordson will display a new enrollment form on the homepage.  This new form will allow a student to enter a 6 digit code and instantly be enrolled into the corresponding course or group within the course. This allows a student to go from the homepage to a course in seconds!  It will even generate and read QR Codes for enrolling elementary kids by simple waving a paper in front of the computer.

Theme Notes and Information

  1. View the latest documentation explaining the best settings for each preset:  Fordson Documentation and Information
  2. In order to use the enhanced homepage you must make the SIte Home the default homepage for all users. It will not display if your homepage is set to Dashboard. Appearance > Navigation > Default Site Homepage.
  3. If upgrading from version 1.3.1 to 1.4.0 you will want to adjust the Header Image Height setting for Fordson.  This should be set to a minimum of 400px as a starting point for you to adjust the custom site and course background images.  The layout changes in 1.4.0 require a larger height to look nice since the image is put behind the content.
  4. VERSION 1.6.1 PRESETS - In this release we changed our default preset to be Dearborn Public Schools. We renamed the previously named default presets to:
    1. default.scss  =  K-12.scss
    2. default_x   =  K-12 Vertical Block TItle
    3. default fullscreen header image  =  K-12 Fullscreen Header Image

Special Thanks

Elements and certain functionality of Fordson would not be possible without the following users and plugins:


This plugin is part of set Fordson theme.


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Picture of Chris Kenniburg
Chris Kenniburg (Lead maintainer)
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  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Fri, 17 Nov 2017, 9:17 PM
    Sya, The alert will show on the custom login page if you enable that on Fordson 1.4.6. The custom login page has instructions in the Fordson theme admin. Basically you fill out the items to customize the homepage and then you force users to login in Site Administration > Security > Site Policies > Force Users To Login. This new login page will also display the alert. Hope that helps.
  • Picture of Jocelyn Chappaz
    Mon, 20 Nov 2017, 4:59 AM
    Hello. When I'm on a test page, and I click the Notes button, I can't find the Export button, to allow me to export notes in .xls or .ods or .csv ... it seems it's not possible to do so when using Fordson or any Bootstrap like theme... what am I missing ? thanks for help...
  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Mon, 20 Nov 2017, 7:37 AM
    Is that a plugin? I'm sorry, I've never exported notes from a quiz.
  • Picture of LeeJH NY
    Tue, 28 Nov 2017, 7:59 AM
    Why do not I see the course description and see only the instructors when I mouse over the course on my front page?
  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Tue, 28 Nov 2017, 9:31 AM
    LeejH, I am assuming you are talking about the course tiles. The settings for this can be found under Appearance > Themes > Fordson > Content Areas > and picking Style 4 for Course Tile Display. There are 4 different styles. Pick one you like. I think Style Two has a course summary too.
  • Picture of xiaofeng liaol
    Fri, 1 Dec 2017, 9:59 AM
    Dear Crish, is it possible to put the Icon to the front of Nav Drawer Text ?

  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Sat, 2 Dec 2017, 9:06 PM
    Xiaofeng, Fordson doesn't have this built in. If you want to change the ordering of the header bar you can grab the header.mustache file from theme/boost/template and make changes to the ordering found in these lines of code. Once you make the changes then put this file in the theme/fordson/template folder. You should keep a copy of this file because everytime you upgrade Fordson you will need to put it back into this folder.
  • Picture of LeeJH NY
    Sun, 3 Dec 2017, 10:33 AM
    Dear Chris, thank you for answering.
    I am currently using style 2. I do not get a summary from any moment. I would like a summary in Style 2, but I do not know where to fix it.
  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Sun, 3 Dec 2017, 8:28 PM
    Sometimes the style limits what is possible to be displayed. Style 1 ,2, and 3 do not provide a course summary. Style 4 does. With that said the code to make these course boxes is right here: and you can add this ' . $summary . ' -including quotes to the code on your site to see the summary. If you can make it work nicely with the style please share back.
  • Picture of LeeJH NY
    Mon, 4 Dec 2017, 2:59 PM
    Dear Chris, Thank you for answer.
    I am a beginner and it is difficult to fix the sauce and I just need to use it.

    I have a another problem.
    Layout broken on default login page (not custom login)
    Other themes are okay, but only in fordson.
    The 'Create new account' section is pushed to the right.
    Does this problem only happen to me? What is wrong?
  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Mon, 4 Dec 2017, 9:14 PM
    Hello LeeJH,
    This might be best to move to the discussion forums because they are best for issues that are not simple. I don't see issues on my test setup so I might need to see screenshots and know if you changed any CSS or customized things beyond what the theme offers.
  • Picture of LeeJH NY
    Mon, 4 Dec 2017, 9:34 PM
    Dear Chris, thank you.
    You are right.
    I think it is wrong to do a DB repair a while ago.
    The same symptom appears in all themes based on boost themes.
    Huh ~ I am worried about how to restore it.
    Anyway, I will leave the screenshot on the link above.
    Thank you for your quick and kind answer.
  • Picture of xiaofeng liaol
    Mon, 4 Dec 2017, 11:36 PM
    Dear Chris, thank you. Another question is, where can I set the home page to show the number of courses in a row 4 courses, the current default is three.
  • Picture of Chris Kenniburg
    Tue, 5 Dec 2017, 1:55 AM
    My Courses on homepage will display 4 course tiles. Available courses will show 3 course tiles. In order to change this you must be able to change the code for Fordson because there is no setting for this. Also, this is best answered in the forums since it is complex and requires several steps which is no good here.
  • Picture of xiaofeng liaol
    Tue, 5 Dec 2017, 3:48 PM
    Chris.Thank you for your reply,Hoping to see that you can provide convenient setup features in the theme.
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