May 25th, 2016 LearnDash Tips

notes Add-on 3

You now have an entire new way to encourage your learners to interact with your course content.

We are excited to be the first WordPress LMS to give your learners the ability to easily take real-time course notes!

One of the most important aspects of successful online courses is learner engagement. It’s a major reason why you see courses using points, badges, various quiz formats, forums, assignments, and notifications.

Well, in addition to using these methods, your learners can now jot down reminders and key points as they go through your course – they can even export and print their notes for offline reference!

This new add-on was created by SnapOrbital and is available for purchase from their site.

Add-On Features

Create & Save Digital Notes – Learners click the “notes” tab when viewing LearnDash courses, lessons and topics and a new window appears for note-taking.

Dynamic Notes Pop-Out – Learners can drag and re-size the notes module so that it is in the perfect position for jotting down their notes. The WYSIWYG editor allows for reader friendly formatting of the text.

Consolidated Notes Dashboard – All saved notes are displayed on their own dashboard making quick access possible.

Export & Print Notes – Notes can quickly be printed, or choose to export to Microsoft Word for additional editing.

Works On Any WordPress Theme – Use on any modern WordPress theme.

How It Works

Once you install and activate the add-on you will notice a notes icon (tab) on the right side of your browser window when viewing LearnDash content.

Simply click this icon and you will be able to add notes.

To create your notes dashboard (as pictured above), insert the following shortcode onto a page:


This makes a perfect compliment to the built-in LearnDash Profile shortcode!

Where To Download

This is a premium add-on created by SnapOrbital and is available for purchase from their website.

If you have any questions or comments related to this add-on, do not hesitate to leave them below.

Until next time!

Justin Ferriman photo

About Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman started LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses. Justin's Homepage | Twitter


69 responses

Leave a Comment

Thanks Justin for the post!

We often use LearnDash on client projects. We came across common needs for note taking and used that experience to design and build this add-on. We’re excited about this first version and have a lot of plans to improve it over time.

Thanks Ross, such a great add-on!

Can the admin read the notes of the users?

Avatar Yifat Cohen

Hi Yifat,

Thanks for the question. Yes! When an admin uses the note list shortcode it displays all the notes on the site.

Let me know if you have any other questions!

Thanks Ross for the quick reply!

Another question.. Reading all the comments here, looks like there are great updates on the horizon.
Will buying the plugin now secure those future updates, or will we need to pay extra for those..?

#thereArwNoSillyQuestions 😉

Avatar Yifat Cohen

Will buying the plugin now secure those future updates, or will we need to pay extra for those..?

Looking at the terms and the license is good for 1-year (and includes updates during that time frame).

can admin add a note to a specific user or group?

Avatar Jayjay

Hi Jayjay,

Hmm I suppose you could create a note for a specific user by unhiding the notes from the admin, setting them as the author and fill in the necessary course, lesson or ID.

It’s not something I had considered, but it sounds like it could be a useful feature to make easier. Maybe you can elaborate and I can add it to our next release?

In Learndash we have groups of students and it would be really beneficial if we could add notes to these groups of students. So it could become a place for assignment deadlines, remember to do notes etc.

Great idea by the way Ross

Avatar Jayjay

Hi Ross, can you clarify how the notes are stored at the database level? Is it a user meta field?

Avatar Kevin Hoffman

Hi Kevin,

Sure! Notes are a custom post type with custom meta fields to store the necessary information about where the note is stored and who the note belongs to.


Hey Ross,

I purchased and installed. Great tool, thanks!! Where can I find the custom posts generated by the notes on WordPress?

And is there any way to make them private, even for us admins? Just curious!


Avatar Bernardo

Thanks for purchasing!

Right now the posts are hidden in the backend but if you open up a support ticket here I’ll work with you to get them visible.


I have had a few requests for notes, looks great!

Is there an option to select which lessons and topics have the notes tab?
Are there options for the size and placement of the notes tab?

Thank you!

Avatar Valerie

Hi Valerie,

Thanks for checking it out!

Not at this time but both options are on our roadmap for a near release.

Users can move and place the note window where ever they’d like and that information is saved, so each user can save their preference. It’s only that first time they interact with the notes that they need to make that change.

Hi Ross
Does it work in Hebrew?
right to left justification?

can you add ability like Udemy to add bookmark that will belong to that commet?

if I have some videos on the same post – can I save seperate comment to each of them

Avatar asher

Hi Asher,

The notes plugin should inherit your RTL declaration.

Font’s could be configured easily with custom CSS but there isn’t a font picker built in.

I’m not familiar with the bookmark functionality of Udemy, so I’m going to say unfortunately not.

It doesn’t support notes on videos or multiple comments per post at this time.


Hi, Ross

Absolutely great plug-in, solved a big headache.
Would be great to store added files like jpg prints and similar if possible.

How are the notes referenced / organized by /for the user?
Are they stored for retrieval through some kind of reference to the course or free form by chronological date? Ideally Id like some organized layout so the user sees which lesson topic course etc he made the notes about.

what would be perfect for me would be to have this build as a working document for the user where course summary notes can also be pinned as the header or title, putting more context to the notes if they are referenced at a much later date. Is this possible?

Heya Paul,

Thanks for checking out the plugin.

We have considered files, it’s definitely in the track for a future release.

Right now each course, lesson or topic has a single note (rather than a series of notes.) So the organization is very straight forward. We are considering adding the ability to create multiple notes a la evernote style in the future. We’d probably organize them by date with a plain text search for title / body text.


OK so if I use the shortcode in the profile, the user will see a list of their notes displayed by course and topic correct?

Hi Paul,

Yes the shortcode outputs a list of all notes in reverse chronological order and includes breadcrumbs displaying where the note was stored.


ok what is needed is a listing in chronological order for sure, but! …the hierarchy by course first must be maintained, else these notes will quickly lose context and usefulness if user is taking multiple courses, and Im back to square 1 and could utilise any note pad feature of any plug-in, can you see the problem? is this possible? Can you see that a notepad although useful, is quickly unwieldy because it lacks organization, which is the point of education, to help organise thinking. If this can be done Ill buy the plug-in.

OH actually I think I misread you Ross
“‘Right now each course, lesson or topic has a single note (rather than a series of notes.) So the organization is very straight forward.”

OK this sounds like I have what I want correct?

Hi Paul,

Let me do some digging, I think what you’re looking for is something like this:

Course Name
– Lesson 1
– Lesson 2
– Lesson 3
— Topic 1
— Topic 2

So the notes are paired with the organizational structure of the course?


Hi Ross, yes indeed, that’s it, so they have some referable structure the user can easily navigate depending upon which course or subject taken.
Let me know asap. If it isnt laid out that way, can it be with some tweaking?

Hey Paul,

It isn’t laid out in that manor currently, but it could be done without too much effort I believe.

I need to do some digging to see how to retrieve and loop through that relationship but I’ve added it to our follow up release schedule. The option to organize notes that way will definitely be added to the plugin.


OK Many thanks Ross,
Thats good to hear. Will sign up and ride the wave of development. Many thanks for this plug-in.

I agree with Paul! That would be an awesome feature.

Plus one on displaying notes in an organized architecture. This add-on will make for many happy clients. Thanks!

Any xAPI involvement such as in timespent?

Great add on Justin!

Avatar Dale

Hi Dale-
Thanks for the comment. There isn’t any xAPI support in the notes add-on.

Hi Dale,

Sorry no xAPI integration at this time, we’ll consider it for a future release though!


Absolutely fantastic news that there is now a note taking update. This is a much needed feature and I’m so happy to have chosen Learn Dash for my LMS needs. Excellent job guys!

Avatar Sarah Thomas

Happy you like the update Sarah! 🙂


I have purchased this plugin and it looks good.

Had two quick questions:

When I export this to word, it has a  at the end of each line. I opened in html format.

Also, is it possible to have it automatically open in word instead of having a user determine which is best (my users will not know/forget which format to open with, even if I tell them).

This is a great plugin. Thank you so much!

Avatar Ryan

Hey Ryan,

Thanks for purchasing!

Can you submit a ticket here so we can discuss in more detail?


Very excited about this so I just purchased it. However, like someone else commented, it would be useful if the notes followed the hierarchy of the courses/lessons/units so the notes could be opened from within that LD lesson or unit. Also, it’s not working on my (android) tablet or phone.

Avatar Leon

Just a little additional note. I have tested the add-on a little further and have also received immediate support with regard to the android issue. I am happy with the way this add-on works and the way support has reached out. I can think of a few ways to make it smarter, but it’s already a great addition to the LearnDash arsenal for user engagement.

Avatar Leon

Great idea and I definitely consider getting a license in the near future. Btw, Justin, I love LearnDash!

Avatar Panagiotis Kouvelis

🙂 Thanks Panagiotis!


I am very excited about this new plugin! I have purchased, uploaded, and input the key.
I am getting an error message that pops up where the notes icon should be “Warning: file_get_contents( […”
Any help is appreciated. I am excited to get this feature up and running!

Hi Shelby-

I know Ross has been pretty active responding to questions here, but just want to pass along their official support form so you can raise questions directly with SnapOrbital:

Hi Shelby,

Just responded to your ticket. Thanks Justin for the assist!

Nice plugin and just what I thought I’d have to hack together myself. I already fired off a couple of support issues to snaporbital support, but thought I’d share this css that seemed to help me:

The Notes icon was hiding partially behind my header using the Divi theme. So I added this css to my styles and it fixed it:

.nt-note-tab {
z-index: 9999999999;

#nt_note_cont .nt-note-wrapper {
z-index: 99999;

One is for the closed state icon and the other for the open state.

I use divi as well. Thanks for posting Jeff! 🙂

I LOVE This!! If anything was missing from your program, this would have been it! Thank you for providing such an excellent program!

Really glad to hear you like the add-on Michelle!

Hi Justin,

Thanks for the new message and I am interested in this plugin add-on .

Hi, Ross,

What I am confusing is how the note taking experience in iPhone. Anyway more and more users use mobile devices to learn nowadays.



This is fantastic. I just completed the first stage of a project for a client and while showing the demo they said “Is there any way that the student can have a little pop out that they can take notes?” Not knowing whether one existed or not I said… “Absolutely” . Then I see this a few days later.

Avatar Jay Deal

It’s like you ‘willed it’ into existence 😉

Great plugin,

I have something like this been build into one site (not Learndash and not as an plugin). It’s very simpel but already cost me a hell of lot more then this great plugin. So I bought Leaner notes without having to think about it. And it even gets beter because new functions are being developed together with the Learndashcommunity. Still have to test this iff it will work on my site, iff so it could save me a lot of money and time!

Some questions.
I read it will work on al themes, but does it work only together with Learndash or also for example with other LMS?

Does it work for al postypes?

Bought it, but could’t find information about if this is a onetime payment or a yearly recurring.

Does it automaticly timestamp each note? So each time a put some more lines of text in it they all get a timestamp? So I can see when I wrote something.

Same about the name off the writer. It has to be on each note, so that it is clear who wrote something.

In my system al the notes about a topic are on a special page in time-order (timestamped) and each note has the name of writer. So you can work together on every topic. I let it build so that I can test topics with topic experts en people who gone use it in practice before I put topics public. And it is also a great way to stroll through the notes and collect the feedback for different people who work for me (copywriter, websitebuilder, illustrator..). And I wanted it also because if you really get in to buyilding a lot of topics/courses you make a lot of notes on paper for yourself. Now I do al of that in my notetaking system. Not only for buildinbg topics but also when they are ready you always new ideas and now I can directly put them on the place the belong, don’t need paper anymore. But I can still print and I story al the notes from a topic as a pdf, so I can always look back. This is only an example what you can do more with a notesystem. Is it for one person to use or also to communicate with each other, and only for the learners or also handy for the people who bould the site and admin. Iff you use it like I do, it’s important that it is easy to clear notes. Iff the admin canb read everybodies notes, he can learn a lot, but also think about privacy.

Avatar Wilco

Thanks Wilco! You may get a quicker response to your questions by submitting them directly to SnapOrbital.

Looks like an interesting plugin but I question the pricing system. 39 dollars is too much (especially when compared to the price of LearnDash).

Avatar Donal Elsted

Iff they hadn’t developed it, and you had to let it build it would cost you probable thousands of dollars. Leardash is cheap also, I guess they must have spent at least 100.000 to 150.000 dollars to build it, update it and maintain it iff not a lot more in those 3 years it excists. Iff you have a real business and know anything about productdevelopment you must see that most WordPress plugins are a bargain. everybody who complains about the price of a WordPress plugin should let one build for their own business so they discover how much time it and money it takes to build software.

Avatar Wilco

On the PROFILE page, my notes are being sorted alphabetically, not by date. FYI…

Is it possible to DELETE a note?

Hi Tom, if you download the most recent version of notes (released today) you can delete notes.


Oh my, this is awesome! I just came over and read this. I already use Customizer from your guys at Snap Orbital and Love it! 🙂 Super excited to add this to the arsenal. $49 for unlimited sites is fair as I can see you are very on it and ready to keep it expanding. Maybe you will put out a “combo deal” one day……… 😉

Can notes be used as a private two way communication between that student and the instructor?

I don’t think so, you can use forums (private messages), BuddyPress (which supports messaging) or essays/assignments in LearnDash for this purpose.


I have purchased and installed the Learndash Notes plugin and alas no icon on the right side of the screen any feedback or suggestions.

Contact SnapOrbital support, they should be able to assist.

In Learndash we have groups of students and it would be really beneficial if we could add notes to these groups of students. So it could become a place for assignment deadlines, remember to do notes etc.

Avatar Jackie

It’s October 2018 and SnapOrbital don’t reply to emails.
What’s the support of this company like?

It would be cool if Learndash could implement its own features like this vs bloating wordpress sites and clogging loading with plugins for this and that.

Avatar Adrian

SnapOrbital generally replies pretty timely. If you still have questions just send a note to LearnDash support and we can reach out to their support on your behalf.

How do I enable “Wordcount” in Learn Dash Notes?


Not sure that’s a feature – but SnapOrbital can probably clarify.

Is there an add-on that supports taking notes within a worksheet that the teacher has created already? For example, I would like to create a graphic organizer template and instruct students how to fill it out. Is it possible to allow students to type into fillable text boxes on a graphic organizer that I have created?

Avatar Nicole Rae

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