Question types: Name to Structure or Reaction (MarvinJS)

Maintained by Picture of Carl LeBlondCarl LeBlond
Name to structure (or reaction) question type. You can ask students to draw chemical structures or reactions. This plugin requires MarvinJS from Chemaxon and openbabel.
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7 fans
Moodle 2.3, 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8


This software is no longer maintained and has been superseded by the OpenOChem LTI assessment system.

With this question type you can query students to reproduce a single molecule, set of molecules or reactions.  This question type is similar to Structure match with editor and the Pattern match with JME editor but offers some more advanced features (see features below).  This plugin requires MarvinJS from Chemaxon.

  • Please draw the structure of water showing all lone pairs?
  • Draw acetic acid and its dissociation in water?
  • Draw all stereoisomers for the following molecule?
  • Draw (R)-3-methyl-pentan-2-ol?


This plugin adopts the same license that Moodle does.  The MarvinJS is available from Chemaxon.


This plugin was developed by Carl LeBlond at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP).  Neither IUP or Carl LeBlond are affiliated with Chemaxon.


This plugin requires MarvinJS from Chemaxon which can be downloaded here.  Download the full package and install it at your web servers root directory.

This plugin also requires openbabel.  On Ubuntu you can install with "sudo apt-get install openbabel".


Example are included in Moodle xml format in the examples folder.


This plugin is part of set EasyOChem.


Screenshot #0


Picture of Carl LeBlond
Carl LeBlond (Lead maintainer)
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  • Picture of David Mudrák
    Fri, Sep 5, 2014, 5:12 AM
    Thanks for sharing this plugin with the community. Please follow the recommendation raised by the plugin check tool and provide a screenshot that illustrates the question type in action. We plan to make use of these screenshots in the future. Thanks.

    Some CSS styles in your plugin do not have specific selectors (like .resizable) and may eventually affect other parts of Moodle as all CSS files from all components are concatenated. Please fix it to make sure the selector applies to the scope of your plugin only.

    Please note that the command argument passed to functions like proc_open() should be sanitized by something like escapeshellarg() in order to prevent eventual (security related) issues or problems caused by misconfiguration of the plugin.

    With the hope this would be fixed soon, you are cleared to land now. Welcome to the Plugins directory.
  • Picture of Carl LeBlond
    Sat, Sep 6, 2014, 8:50 AM
    David - I fixed the css specificity as you suggested, santized proc_open, tested and then uploaded new version. Thanks for your input!
  • Picture of Kathrin Osswald
    Wed, Sep 2, 2015, 4:20 PM
    Hi Carl, I just wanted to know for what exactly purpose the OpenBabel installation is required.
    I had an instance where I did not install OpenBabel and one where I installed it and I could not determine any differences.
    Could you please explain the need for it?
  • Picture of Carl LeBlond
    Wed, Sep 2, 2015, 8:03 PM
    Hi Kathrin - MarvinJS does not natively convert its structures to smiles, so openbabel is used to do the mdlmol file to smiles conversion. Without openbabel all answers will appear as correct.
  • Picture of Kathrin Osswald
    Wed, Sep 2, 2015, 8:36 PM
    Hi Carl, thanks for your answer! smile
  • Picture of Miro Iliaš
    Tue, Apr 25, 2017, 3:32 PM
    Hi, as Organic chemistry teacher, I am interested in this plugin. However, its web-site url is not working...any help, please ?
  • Picture of Carlos Vega
    Sun, Feb 11, 2018, 3:55 PM
    I think it got pulled down sad
  • Picture of Fernanda R.
    Tue, Oct 6, 2020, 3:33 AM
    Hi, Is there any plans to update this plugin to version 3.8 / 3.9 / 4.0?
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