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Moodle Moot 2012: Just 2 - look what she can do!

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Following on from my presentation at Moodle Moot 2011 ’And nine months later we had Moodle…’ I took the opportunity to share with Moodle community our (York St John University) migration to Moodle …

Following on from my presentation at Moodle Moot 2011 ’And nine months later we had Moodle…’ I took the opportunity to share with Moodle community our (York St John University) migration to Moodle 2.

The presentation covered how we built upon the successful strategy we previously implemented when moving to Moodle. I was also be able to share with the audience how we customised Moodle to support our institutional requirements and needs.

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  • Just 2 & look what she can do! – Explain the presentationIntroduce myself and my role– Daniel Mackley, Staff Technology Enhanced Learning Trainer from York St John University.Good Morning, my name is Daniel Mackley and I‘m the Staff Technology Enhanced Learning Trainer at York St John University. Some of you may recognise me from the last Moot when I presented about York St John’s migration from Blackboard campus edition 8 to Moodle. This presentation follows our progress since then and it will focus on how we have customised Moodle 2 to support our institutional needs.I’m more than happy with you to ask questions – but I would like to take all questions at the end of the presentation.
  • Where we have come from – background information.So to start of with I would just like to set the scene in regards to where we have come from in the last two years. This diagram represents a condensed timeline of our transition to Moodle and our upgrade to Moodle 2. In January 2010, the decision was made to install Moodle as the institutions learning management system. We than ran a series of pilot courses (in semester two that year). This helped us pre-empt any potential problems that might have occurred when rolling out the live system. We also tried to target the staff with reservations during the pilot stage to address the concerns they had. After the pilot stage, Moodle was officially launched as the institutions learning management system in September 2010. In early 2011, the decision was made to move to Moodle 2 – we started an internal campaign to raise the awareness of this to both staff and students.In June 2011, we moved to Moodle 2 ready for the start of the academic year in September 2011.
  • Moodle 2 included functionality that staff were asking for (conditional activities, selective release etc.)Staff training and development - We knew we would have to take the training hit a some point again and initially when we migrated from Blackboard to Moodle a lot of the training was focused around essentially getting people from A to B. The upgrade gave use the opportunity to focus more on best practice for online course delivery – minimum expectations, online activities and e-moderations.It gave us the opportunity to enhance our Moodle theme. Previously we had a lack of consistency across multiple themes – a redesign of the theme also allowed us to enhance the usability and accessibility of MoodleWeb services to pull info to student portal (SharePoint)And finally we had a relatively smooth and successful migration from Blackboard to Moodle
  • So, one of things that migrating to Moodle 2 allowed us to do was refine and streamline ourautomatic course creation and student enrolments process.In order to facilitate automatic course creation & student enrolments we developed a web application called Moodle modules that sits between the student record system SITS and Active Directory.How it all works?1. SITs (the student record system) is the point of authority for information about students, modules, semesters and groups – this information is used in the Moodle modules application.2. A Tutors log-on to the Moodle modules and makes course selection based on the information provided by SITs. Tutors also assign other tutors who need to be enrolled on the module – as SITs doesn’t hold this data.The tutor can then choose which courses they wish to create, the list of options is dictated by whether there is more than one semester or more than one group listed in SITS.  Once they choose an option the choice is locked. Modules are set to No Moodle Courses by default and this is reset for the next year’s courses. 3. A script is then run to create the groups in Active Directory it adds both student and tutors as members – these group determine what courses are created in Moodle. This process currently runs three times a day. It is increased to every two hours at peak times. 4. When a user logs into Moodle, the active directory groups are checked and courses are created and enrolments updated as required.
  • Ok so, this is a screenshot of the Moodle Modules application. A tutors log-on to the Moodle modules and makes course selection based on the information provided by SITs. The tutor can then choose which courses they wish to create, the list of options is dictated by whether there is more than one semester or more than one group listed in SITS.  Tutors also assign other tutors who need to be enrolled on the module – SITs doesn’t hold this data.Modules are set to No Moodle Courses by default and this is reset for the next year’s courses. Once they choose an option the choice is locked.
  • One of the drivers for moving to Moodle was it allowed us to customise it to the institutions requirements. We are now going to look at some of the more note worthy customisations we have made to Moodle throughout this presentation. These include:We will look at the enhancements we made to the course overview page. This includes the development of a course filter. The Moodle theme we developed - in particular the accessibility features we added. The modification to Moodle course import facility We will also look at the integration work we have done with the YSJ student portal (SharePoint)----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Automatic course creation & student enrolment – streamlines the course creation and student enrolment process on Moodle courses.Course filter – enhancement and additional features to the course overview page. This allows both staff and students to filter the courses displayed on the course overview page. Simple course import – allows staff to import content from courses in previous years with one click.Integration with SharePoint (which displays outstanding assignments) – Assignment information is pulled through in to the student portal which is powered by SharePoint.Integration BBB, TurnItIn & Mahara – TurnItIn and Mahara are now completely embedded are being used accordingly (e-submission and e-porfolios)Course voting block – used to highlight exemplar and poor courses, created by South Devon college (I think).
  • When we moved to Moodle 2 it gave us an opportunity to create a more vibrant, accessible and user friendly theme. It also meant we could have one consistent theme across all Moodle courses.Customisable image at the top of the themeAccessibility features (increase text size, change colour scheme etc.)Students can also modify the theme and design
  • We have also made some significant changes to the course overview pages. These changes were driven by the feedback we received from both staff and students. We have developed a course filter that allows both staff and students to filter courses based on the following criteria: Academic year, semester and Category (faculty). We are looking to enhance the filter so it includes criteria such as: courses accessed in the last day or week. Our developer is also looking to make the course filter code available on Moodle.org in the near future.Course overview plus extends the core Course Overview block to allow courses to be hidden and course overview information to be collapsed and expanded.Both staff and students also have the ability to hide and unhide courses should they wish not to see them on the course overview page.This is available on Moodle.org: http://moodle.org/plugins/view.php?plugin=block_course_overview_plusThe one down side to the course filter and hidden courses is we have received more enquires from both staff and students about not having access to there modules. Nine times out of ten this is because they have been filtered out or hidden. So another enhancement we are considering is a ‘Reset all’ button that will reset the course filter and hidden courses so it displays all the courses on the course overview page.-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Course filter – allows both staff and students to filter the courses displayed on the course overview page against the following criteria:. The course filter is based on the course categories defined in Moodle. It is going to be enhanced to include other criteria such as: courses accessed in last week/day.A generic version of the course filter plugin will be released on Moodle.org in the near future. This will not include the YSJ specific faculty criteria.
  • We also modified Moodle’s course import. The reason for this is that we ask staff to setup a new course for each module every year it is run.It’s an easy way to transfer content from one course to another. It copies everything but the announcement and it clears all the student data (such as forum posts etc.). We did run into a few difficulties with this course import – sometime all the course content was transferred to the first section of the course. And we did run into difficulties if the module included to a TurnItIn assignment.
  • We have also done some development work around Moodle and the student portal (SharePoint). A block has been developed for the student portal that displays assignment details for that specific student. It highlights if any assignments are overdue, if any assignments are due this week or if any assignments have been returned (i.e.. marked by the tutor).We are looking to enhance the Moodle, student portal integration by using web services available in Moodle 2. We are going to be looking at making more Moodle information available on the student portal page.
  • So in the future we would like to make the following enhancements to our Moodle installation. The institution has recently moved to electronic assignment submission, so we are looking to enhance the grade book and assignment activities. We would also like to enhance Moodle by integrating it with a media hosting platform and lecture capture software.
  • That concludes my presentation, please feel free to ask any questions.Thank you for your time.

Transcript

  • 1. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012IRELAND & UKMOODLEMOOT2012Daniel MackleyStaff TEL TrainerYork St John University
  • 2. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012SETTING THE SCENE!
  • 3. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012WHY UPGRADE TO MOODLE 2?• Moodle 2 included functionality that our userswere asking for• Staff training and development• Opportunity to enhance our Moodle theme• Web services - allowed us to pull information tostudent portal (SharePoint)
  • 4. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012AUTOMATIC COURSE CREATION& STUDENT ENROLMENTSMoodle Modules is a webapplication that sitsbetween the studentrecord system SITS andActive Directory.Moodle modules dictateswhat modules are createdwithin Moodle and assignstutor roles.The icons used in this diagram are taken from the Open Icon Library: http://openiconlibrary.sourceforge.net/. Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licence.
  • 5. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012MOODLE MODULESAPPLICATION
  • 6. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012CUSTOMISATIONS ANDENHANCEMENTS• Moodle theme• Course filter & course overview plus• Simple course import• Integration with SharePoint
  • 7. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012MOODLE THEME
  • 8. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012COURSE FILTER & COURSEOVERVIEW +http://moodle.org/plugins/view.php?plugin=block_course_overview_plus
  • 9. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012SIMPLY COURSE IMPORT• Modified the course import process in Moodle toallow a ‘copy everything from previous year option’• Displays the coursewith a similar courseid number
  • 10. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012STUDENT PORTALINTEGRATION• Assignment information is pulled through in tothe student portal which is powered bySharePoint• A web service was written todisplay assignment information
  • 11. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012MOVING FORWARD...• Course creation to be done in the studentrecords system (SITs) to allow integration withthe Moodle grade book• Bulk upload of assignments• Integrate lecture capture software and mediahosting platform
  • 12. IRELAND & UK MOODLEMOOT 2012ANY QUESTIONS?Thank you for your time.Daniel MackleyTechnology Enhanced Learning TrainerYork St John Universitye: d.mackley@yorksj.ac.uk