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What Makes a Good Moodle course


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Age-old question...many answers. Can the question itself be improved? Is there more to 'good course' than design? Can we pull it all together somehow?

Background slides to the 2011 Australian MoodleMoot presentation

Published in: Education, Technology
  • Very practical on what works and what to avoid when designing a Moodle course; top stuff and very helpful for novices. Thanks!
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  • Excellent overview for all moodlers to avoid common mistakes- this is what moodle is meant for! Thanks a lot Tomaz for your awesome work!
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What Makes a Good Moodle course

  1. 1. “What makes a good Moodle course?”
  2. 2. A few tips and observations from Moodle community ...
  3. 3. Ask not: Moodle-centric“What makes a good Moodle course?” Learning-centric
  4. 4. Ask not: Moodle-centric“What makes a good Moodle course?”Ask instead:“What makes a good learning experience?” Learning-centric
  5. 5. An attempt to bring the voices together ...A framework for understanding: (Koehler & Mishra)
  6. 6. UsabilityWhat is meant by usability?Visual and textual design of a Moodle course to achieve specified goals and satisfyusers in a given context. This includes users with disabilities.Why is it important?★Reduces (unnecessary) effort to do things - scrolling, clicking, browsing.★Improves clarity and consistency. ‘Scroll of death’ Dead links Main page = launchpad Odd navigation Consistent, uncluttered layout Heavy text-base Logical organisation Overzealous graphics Easy navigation, flow Lots of clicking ... and similar
  7. 7. VarietyWhat is meant by variety?Moodle has a variety of tools that are best suited to do different things. Not all arealways needed, only the appropriate ones for the purpose at hand.Why is it important?★ Improves efficiency (make the most of people’s time and effort).★ Increases engagement (do what you and people you work with WANT to do) Multiple and task-appropriate File dump modules, standard and contributed
  8. 8. Re-usabilityWhat is meant by re-usability?The ease with which the course to be re-used, adapted, modified, maintained by theoriginal creator and/or others in the future.Why is it important?★ Reduces the time and effort to re-use the course or parts of it.★ Improves popularity and widens the use through sharing on community hubs and similar outlets.Many non-standard modulesComplex custom theming Mostly standard modulesExperimental coding Standard themesHuge file sizes Small filesOverly-complex conditionals... Simple conditionals (if any)
  9. 9. InteractionWhat is meant by interaction?Why is it important?This time, a short clip ... Multiple, appropriate channels for interaction: (student-student, teacher-student,A default News Forum, parent-teacher, group-individual...)(unused) Enabling of groups Provision for collaborative work ...
  10. 10. ScaffoldingWhat is meant by scaffolding?To organise and support investigation or inquiry with clear goals, direction, resourcesand assessment that is appropriate, meaningful and challenging to the learner(s).Why is it important?★ Avoids learners veering off the path too far and possibly losing interest.★ Clear, meaningful challenges and achievable goals increase motivation to persist and succeed. Clear path of activitiesNo obvious path or sequence Rationales, descriptions, directionsNo rationales, descriptions Sequence (not necessarily linear!)No ‘checkpoints’ Appropriate use of cond. activities Variety of assessment ‘checkpoints‘
  11. 11. FeedbackWhat is meant by feedback?Provision of information used by people to learn and alter the gap between theircurrent and the ideal performance. Traditionally, feedback is provided mostly by teachers tostudents but can very powerfully flow in other, multiple directions.Why is it important?★ Builds self-assessment, self-regulation abilities and meta-learning (learning how to learn).★ Increases people’s knowledge, skills, confidence and perception about themselves in the role they play (learner, teacher, parent, mentor ...). Variety, appropriate formative & summative assessment,No feedback in any way Allowing multiple ways of providing timely feedback (student-student, student-teacher etc.) Use of peer and self-evaluation
  12. 12. RelevanceWhat is meant by relevance?Content is relevant if it addresses the needs of a person at a specific time at the levelunderstood by the person. Relevance - the solution to the problem of information overload.Why is it important?★ Reduces the info overload.★ Supports, enables scaffolding. Content part of/linked with specific learning activitiesMany disorganised documents Understandable by learner(s)and links to browse,often in a single area of access Just-in-time needed/requested by learner(s), not (only) placed there ‘in case’ by teacher
  13. 13. QualityWhat is meant by quality?Age, topic and expertise-appropriate, trustworthy, up-to-date and readily availablecontent that can brought into the course, created within the course and/or exportedbeyond the course. It does not drive the course - it enriches it.Why is it important?★ Supports, enriches learning and improves confidence of learners to use and/or create quality content for variety of purposes.★ Allows value of the course (commercial, links ...) to be extended beyond the course. Appropriate level of up-to-date,A few files with outdated info static and/or dynamic external(behind a pay-wall) content... Multiple, varied examples and opportunities to create quality, public content
  14. 14. LicensingWhat is meant by licensing?Stipulating the conditions and limitations of using individual piece(s) of content andobserving conditions and limitations set by others.Why is it important?★ Cultivates responsible ‘net-citizenship’.★ Observation of legal copyright requirements (possibly very costly!). Course and contentsNo consideration given to marked with appropriate licenselicensing of course, contents Licensing observed, acknowledgedMultiple breaches of copyright with all external items (documents, media, images...)
  15. 15. Project: I Can Change the World Created by Alja Isakovic (@ialja) for the 2011 iMoot Course Creator Challenge Available at Mt Orange School Demo & MOOCHIs this a good Moodle course? Why (not)?Is this a good learning experience?
  16. 16. Background slides to the 2011 Australian MoodleMoot session.Participants were invited to contribute real-time to the following public Google Docs,moderated and discussed in the live session:Technology (usability, variety, re-usability)Pedagogy (interactivity, scaffolding, feedback)Content (relevance, quality, licensing)Course evaluation -‘Project: I Can Change the World’
  17. 17. Image credit:Lumaxart - byTomaz Lasic Licence conditions