Newest Review: ... normally be set as weekly, for businesses or other users this will often be set to Topic or social to allow headings to be used per topic ... more
Its the end of death by powerpoint
Moodle Learning Management System Software
Member Name: sandra101
Moodle Learning Management System Software
Advantages: Sharing information easily but with security in place
Disadvantages: Need a good technical knowledge to set it up
Moodle is an open source course management system the name being an acronym for Modular Object Orientated Developmental Learning Environment. This may sound very high brow and difficult to master but the software itself is mostly extremely easy to understand and navigate.
- - What is it used for - -
Moodle software has a very solid position in the market for E-learning platforms. This software is used by companies, universities and schools for seminars, training courses or project groups to share files and improve communication.
The functions provided by moodle continually expand and it has now gone into partnership with the second life site leading to the new branding for this of sloodle. We are presently working on having a virtual College Campus on second life which is used for distance learning or revision for those attending daily.
A course management system like this will often be administered by a School\College or Business but I know a number of individuals who have set them up at home to create a course web site, which limits the information to just those enrolled as students.
- - How do I get it - -
This software is open source material making it free. You can download it from www.moodle.com. I am reviewing the use of Moodle in an educational setting.
- - How do I use it - -
Once the administration has been set-up and courses or modules added you are ready to access your course and begin to populate it.
When you first open your Moodle interface you will be greeted with the site news and the courses you are either teaching or taking. If you are enrolled as a teacher you have the rights to edit this page by deleting or adding blocks or by uploading content. The blocks can be used to show activities, blogs, courses, HTML, RSS feeds etc.
Within your course you can choose the format of how your information will appear. Within an educational setting this will normally be set as weekly, for businesses or other users this will often be set to Topic or social to allow headings to be used per topic rather than dates.
Under each section be it by date or topic you can add the content which you want to share. To allow students\co-workers access to the data you can choose to set security to nil and allow everyone access or you can set a password and only those who have this will be able to access the materials. Often in a large school\College the student base will be automatically taken from a database created at registration and the students will be placed into the correct course.
On each topic\week you can create a label possibly explaining what the topic\lesson will be covering and then upload the relevant materials. The method for uploading is extremely intuitive.
- - What can I add to my course\topic\module - -
Click on add a resource to:
Insert a label - Type up an introduction or note
Link to a document or website - Opens a document or website
Compose a text page or web page - Share information
Display a directory - Show files in a directory
Add an IMS Content Package - Add an IMS Learning resource
Click on add an activity to add:
Chat - allows a real-time discussion
Forum - Allows a discussion between students. As forums are
asynchronous your students can carefully word their
responses drafting and rewriting until they are
happy which is especially good for shyer students.
Choice - The teacher asks a question and specifies a choice of
multiple responses. The answers can be used as a
vote on a specific subject or to confirm that a learning
objective has been achieved.
Quiz - Upload hot-potatoes or scorm quizzes or compose your
own multiple choice, short answer, missing word, match
quizzes. Results are stored for each person
Wiki - Along the lines of wikipedia it allows students to work
together to add to and change the information included
on a particular subject in a set of linked webpages
Glossary - create and maintain a list of definitions - relating to a
Assignment - Set assignments which can be uploaded and graded
Embedding - Videos from youtube, teacherstv etc. can be embedded
into lessons and watched at home\in school by students
You can also add details of events onto student calendars add RSS feeds with the newest finance news, share prices etc.
- - What do I need to know - -
The most important things to remember when starting out in Moodle
Name everthing very carefully - you could end up with several courses and many quizzes and assignments, make it easy to differentiate between them.
Also make it easy for the students to understand what documents are eg. Click here for homework Jan 13th rather than worksheet1.
Work tidily - keep your files etc. in folders possibly for each topic/week section.
Zip files into a folder to upload multiple files to Moodle then unzip once uploaded.
Avoid long lists of worksheets one under the other instead use 'display directory' . This shows a briefcase icon and when the student clicks on it, the files will be shown, rather than cluttering up the page.
Where possible choose compose a webpage for new worksheets rather than uploading from word. The students can access it more quickly and you can edit more easily.
Students can access notes before class begins - helpful for those with learning difficulties
Students can run through class notes, quizzes, forums, chats etc. as revision prior to exams
Forums are good for those shyer students who prefer asynchronous work
Notes, assignments, quizzes, forum posts etc. can all be accessed from home for those with access to Broadband if they are off ill.
You need a good system administrator or a lot of time to set up the system but the forums at http://moodle.org/course/view.php?id=5 can be a great help with any queries.
This is a very useful free educational software package and is really helping to forge the way forward for elearning at the present time. It adds an extra dimension to study and in a manner which the younger generation understand.
The help system for working on your course\module\topic on Moodle is reasonably good but there are some very good forums with helpful members available online where you can pose more technical queries. The software can be used on Unix, Linux, FreeBSD, Windows, Mac OS X, NetWare and any other systems that support PHP and a database, including most webhost providers.
If you are computer literate you can begin to use Moodle without much in the way of training and no web design skills are required.
If you would like to see a working moodle course or would like to see if it would be useful in your teaching or group check out
I have been moodling for over a year now and have found it to be easy to use, fun for students and as your notes, partially completed spreadsheets etc. can be shared with students it saves a lot of time on student preparation for a lesson allowing more time to examine formulas rather than spending time typing in numbers and text.
Summary: No more death by powerpoint lessons
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