Monthly Archives: July 2011

All Students To Be Loaded into Moodle Orientation

All students enrolled in a Fall 2011 MoodleRooms course will also be loaded into the Fall 2011 Moodle Orientation course.  This course will be accessible to students through the DCCC Courses Block in the upper left hand side upon logging into MoodleRooms.  See below.

My DCCC Courses Block

Students can access the Moodle Orientation through the Miscellaneous category.

This course is a self paced list of tasks that steps students through the key features of Moodle.  Instructors may choose to require participation in this course.  If they do, students are given a certificate upon completion.  Students can then be required to submit this pdf document to their instructors as proof of their work.  The certificate automatically generates a unique code that can be verified by the distance learning team if the instructor so desires.

Topics covered in the orientation are:
1.  Basic Moodle navigation
2.  How to update user profile
3.  Managing user password
4.  How to email instructor
5.  How to access resources
6.  Assignment submission
7.  Monitoring grades
8.  Posting to a forum
9.  Where to find course announcements
10.  Common items found in all DCCC Moodle courses

I recommend instructors consider requiring this course for their students.  It does not take an extremely long time to do.  It will also help instructors manage Moodle “how to” questions.  It can be a great resource to reference and direct students to when they have those questions.  I also encourage instructors go through the Moodle Orientation themselves.  It is a great opportunity to experience Moodle from the student perspective as well as get an idea of what the Orientation contains.

Keep in mind that students also have access to 24/7 Moodle support as they did with Blackboard.  Quick access to this support is located on the front page of Moodle by clicking on the question mark icon.  Or they can access the Moodle support by clicking on the Moodle Support link within any course.  See below.

Moodle Tech Support

This link can be found within any MoodleRooms course.

Moodle Tech Support

This icon can be found on the login page.

Groups in MoodleRooms

Groups are a great way to manage subsets of students within one MoodleRooms course.  Instructors can create one forum (the Blackboard equivalent would be a discussion board) that has groups of students that are discussing different things.  The groups feature allows for instructors to decide to what degree the groups interact with other groups.  This can be done by switching between two options:  separate and visible.

Separate means that groups do not even see the other groups posts within the forum.  Therefore, the groups are working completely separate from each other.  Visible means that groups can see the posts of another group.  However, they cannot reply to a thread initiated by another group member.  This option would be particularly helpful when it is beneficial to students to see what other groups are discussing.

The groups feature also allows for the instructor to be able to filter their view in the gradebook by groups.  This could be helpful if multiple sections of a course are housed in one MoodleRooms shell.  Instructors can just look at Section WA’s students and then switch to SectionWB’s students, for example.  See below.Groups allow filtering in Gradebook view

There is one best practice that should be highlighted if you are going to use the option separate group.  If an instructor generally likes to start off a forum by posting the first thread and then have the students reply directly to that thread, they need to make an initial post for each group. This must be done in order for each group to be able to interact with the initial post. The details of how to do this are listed in the second help document linked below.

For more information regarding groups, check out these two help documents posted on our website:  help doc one and help doc two.  More Moodle resources are to come.