Today I stumbled upon a blog post on E-Learning industry about “5 Reasons To Look For Moodle Alternatives” which are mentioned by the author – Ridvan Aliu. In the post, he mentioned his own experience with Moodle and provided 5 reasons to migrate to other commercial systems like EDUonGo.
Being a strong supporter of Moodle, the points mentioned by Ridvan are not agreeable to me, so I thought to clarify as per my level of understanding with Moodle – Why you shouldn’t look for Moodle alternatives and prefer Moodle over others
Moodle at the Open University - what we've done, how we've done it and where we're looking next.
The presentation titled “Ten Years and onwards – Moodle at Open University” by Jenny Gray – Head of Centre of Excellence (Technical), IT Architecture at Open University contains their decade long experience with Moodle including what they have done, how they have done, what they learnt from it and where OU is going next in future with Moodle.
Here’s a cool video of an integration available from Paradiso Solutions (note that this has not been released on Moodle.org). The integration allows you to launch Hangouts directly from Moodle. The possibilities for tutoring, class discussions and other communication objectives are endless. If your school or organization uses Google Apps, this might be a great low cost addition to providing online students a way to connect with you outside of the classroom (regardless of their device).
Martin Dougiamas is best known as the founder of Moodle, and leading the team of software developers at the heart of the Moodle project. His major goal for the future is to improve the quality of education by encouraging social constructionist and collaborative practices within online learning communities.
With 68 million users worldwide (larger than UK’s population!), Moodle is hands down the most-widely used learning management system (LMS) by organizations of all shapes and sizes. But Moodle is not the world’s best LMS just because it’s so widely used—Moodle is the world’s best LMS because it is user-friendly, highly-configurable (flexible), and feature-rich. Oh wait, did we also mention that Moodle is free?
SLOODLE is a free and open source project which integrates the multi-user virtual environments of Second Life® and/or OpenSim with the Moodle™ learning management system.
SLOODLE provides a range of tools for supporting learning and teaching to the immersive virtual world; tools which are fully integrated with a tried and tested web-based learning management system used by hundreds of thousands of educators and students worldwide.
Tools and Features
* Connect to a chatroom with the Web Intercom. Students can participate in chats in Second Life using the accessible Moodle chatroom. Discussions can be archived securely in a Moodle database.
- Make presentations with the Presenter. Slides can be quickly uploaded to Moodle in a variety of formats, then viewed in-world as part of a live presentation or asynchronously in Moodle.
- Gather feedback with the Choice.
- Manage in-world assignments with the Assignment Drop-Box. Review grades quickly and easily in the standard Moodle gradebook.
- Distribute inventory with the Vendor.
- Link identities of Moodle users and avatars with the Reg-enrol booth.
- Take quizzes in-world with real-time feedback with the in-world Quiz Chair, integrated with the Moodle gradebook.
- Track points in in-world quizzes and games with the Scoreboard.
- Manage scenes of different objects with the Rezzer. 3D objects and activities can be easily arranged, saved and recreated.
Discussion of some major trends of recent years, how these have impacted Moodle (including a discussion of some Moodle extensions addressing them) and some observations about future trends that will impact how Moodle developers will want to adapt the technology in the future.
Recently there was, what could have been, a fairly benign thread posted on the Moodle forums about how to create more interactive lessons. JP, the thread originator, was simply looking for a way to bring a little more life to the Moodle experience.
As can be expected from the Moodle community, there were others who immediately dove in and offered help and ideas – specifically by looking at all of the features available in the lesson module. However, JP was looking for something even beyond this.
The Moodle Cloud service was introduce by Moodle HQ just over one and a half years ago as a way to support smaller scale users of Moodle. The service is completely free (unless you want to turn off advertising, and recently Martian Dougiamas announced new tiered pricing at the #MootIEUK16) and is a fantastic way to do everything from get your first Moodle up and running, to hosting a small course or just experimenting with the platform.
The service was designed with the non-tech portion of the Moodle community in mind. It is literally a “sign up and go” service with everything you need to run courses. As such, users of Moodle Cloud can’t integrate all of the plugins and customizations they may want, but that’s not really the point.
As I see it, Moodle is this fantastic system that has so much to offer and provides genuine solutions to complexities that I still struggle to comprehend. Massively talented developers have poured their time and effort into making this product incredibly powerful and scalable (a task unto itself). So I ask that we give these developers the respect and kudos they deserve. What I am setting out to do, is ask that we help them to improve the usability of this software, so that the user can fully appreciate the amazing tool they have at their fingertips.
Faces is a simple block that allows you to print or view a collection of user profile pictures for your moodle course. Its very useful for those of us who need to put a name to a face. Faces can be viewed/printed for the entire class or by group.
It gives me great pleasure to officially announce Moodle 2.9, our latest major release that packages up all the new things from the past six months of work.
This release has a lot of new things in it (over 360 issues), ranging from some great interface improvements in many areas such as navigation, messaging, lesson and quiz, to things in the backend that designers and developers will be happy about, such as full support for jQuery and the mustache templating library (which I hope explains the Moodle kids photo for this release! )
For the best overview of everything new start with our New Features page or watch our series of explanatory videos below:
For more technical details see the full Moodle 2.9 Release Notes and our Upgrading page. And of course to download it just go to our download page or use Git.
As always, thanks so much to the entire community of developers, teachers and others who contributed towards this release, and especially our dedicated team at Moodle HQ and the Moodle Partners who support us.
We are now already busy on Moodle 3.0, due in November!
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