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Moodle - an industry perspective, how to use & myths
Introduction & industry perspective
Signy IT Solutions Pvt Ltd, Pune
A brief about Signy IT Solutions
• Web apps & mobile apps development
• Opensource platforms
• Education domain
• Tech: PHP, MySQL
• Platforms: Moodle, Prestashop, SugarCRM, WordPress and
• Introduction to Moodle’s abilities…. not just Moodle
• Industry perspective
• Underlining myths and respective truths about Moodle
• Sharing experience and ideas
A quick introduction to Moodle
• Virtual learning environment
• Learning management system
• Online course management system
In a ‘definition’ way
• A learning platform designed to provide educators,
administrators and learners with a single robust, secure and
integrated system to create personalized learning
• Can be deployed on LAMP or WAMP
It is built as a browser based application and hence can be
deployed as any of below:
• Internet application
• Intranet application
• Single PC application
• Deployment architecture & hosting
• Deriving and implementing the optimum configuration
• Consulting on how to make the most of Moodle
Why industry looks at Moodle as business – part I
1st lets open our mind!
When we used for the 1st time:
• Computer wasn’t easy
• Word, excel, powerpoint weren’t easy
• Email wasn’t easy
• Internet banking wasn’t easy
• Booking tickets and buying online wasn’t easy
Nothing was easy when we did that for the first time!
Moodle features - I
• Site management
• User management, user policy management and
• Role management and permissions
• Course management – course definition, course design,
enrolment and more. This is the key part of your Learning
Moodle features - II
• Grades management and assessment engine
• Appearance management – UI, themes, design elements,
• Other utilities like blog, calendar and more
• Reporting module
• Security management
• Server management and backup management
Benefits of using Moodle - I
Comprehensive & cost-effective
• Moodle engine is built with a comprehensive set of elearning
features. One doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel by incurring
high costs on custom development.
Benefits of using Moodle - II
Quick turn-around time
• Your elearning portal can be ready in a few days. Considering
long custom development cycles, this can be looked at as the
Benefits of using Moodle - III
• Moodle is a truly opensource platform – source code is
available, no licensing costs, no commercial product versions
(commercial product versions generally translates into sub-
optimal free versions).
• Always up-to-date
Benefits of using Moodle - IV
Non-technical persons can administer
• No need of skilled technical resources for managing Moodle
• One time implementation, configuration and training enables
non-technical users manage a Moodle site without hassle.
Benefits of using Moodle - V
Comprehensive by default, strengthened by plug-ins
• Default features and functionality of Moodle are capable
enough to stand as a quality elearning portal.
• Apart from those default features there are a number of plug-
ins available which can be integrated with Moodle to make
the portal even more comprehensive – plug-ins can be of
small utility nature or serious functionality.
Benefits of using Moodle - VI
• Moodle code can be customized to match the business
• New features can be developed and integrated either as plug-
ins or by customizing the core code.
• Small blocks can be developed to enhance user engagement
and add useful functionality or enhance visual appeal.
• Look and feel can also be customized.
GENERAL COMPARISON WITH
OTHER LMS PRODUCTS/TOOLS
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - I
• It is an open source learning platform, which is utilized by
millions of people worldwide.
• This open source nature allows anybody to tinker with its
code or add new things.
• Users can share changes with the Moodle community for
others to use for free.
• All this leads to the extension and reformation of the
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - II
• It makes use of simple technologies, as a result of which its
developers are easy to find.
• It is built on some of the most reliable technologies, such as
PHP, MySQL, Apache.
– Like Facebook, Google, ebay
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - III
• It has a fully cooperative development model which offers
constant scope for improvement by allowing many high
quality contributions to acquire new modules, features and
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - IV
• It makes use of the more advanced programming approach,
the object-oriented programming which makes its
functionality all the more efficient and allows users to
proceed at their own pace, as well as customize it according
to their needs.
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - V
• It focuses on making the learning and teaching
• This process encourages the involvement of learners in the
learning process, rather than letting them receive knowledge
• The learning environment becomes more democratic with
interactive and student-centered activities.
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - VI
• It is convenient for educational institutions and organizations
for learning and course management.
• It can be quickly deployed in your organization, without the
requirement of any extra efforts.
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - VII
• It is highly cost-effective, since it has a low risk startup and a
low initial investment.
• It provides you with fast and reliable updates of information.
How Moodle compares with other LMS products - IX
• It provides you with regular support, all the time you use it.
Its support feature is active twenty four hours a day, seven
days a week and addresses to its developers, members and
Quick recap of key points about Moodle
• Proven and trusted worldwide
• Designed to support both
teaching and learning
• Easy to use
• Free with no licensing fees
• Always up-to-date
• Moodle in your language
• All-in-one learning platform
• Highly flexible and fully
• Scalable to any size
• Robust, secure and private
• Use anytime, anywhere, on
• Extensive resources available
• Backed by a strong community
Why industry looks at Moodle as business – part II
– To fit in organizational processes
– Visual preferences
• Integrating with other tools, applications
What colleges can do with Moodle
• Distance learning courses
• Complimentary or supplementary learning aid
• Online exam portal
• Run co-curricular courses or even extra-curricular
• Campus placement preparation tool
• Study material as homework before classroom session
• Official place for important circulars, notices
• Internal communication; no emails
• Internship projects submissions and assessments
How industry uses Moodle
• Recruitment tests
• Induction programs
• Knowledge forums
• Internal LMS – skill building and assessments
• Study material & notes
• Preparation tests, mock tests
Non obvious ones
• Quizzing through games
• Feedback (survey)
• Once Moodle is stable, it will be put under license. If it were
any good, they’d already be charging for it.
• Moodle is free and therefore can't really be as good as
something produced by a large company which earns millions
in license fees every year.
• You need to be an expert and tech savvy to use Moodle
• Moodle needs a full time, php developer on your staff- or at
least a lot of technical support to run it in house.
• Moodle won’t be compatible with our other systems/software
• Moodle just doesn’t have the commercial experience we’re
looking for; not professional
• You can’t just use Moodle out of the box – the basic Moodle
install just isn’t that sophisticated
• There’s no documentation, training or technical support
available – you’re on your own.
• The TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) is actually higher for
Moodle than it would be with a wholly commercial platform.
• Moodle is just no good for an institution as large as mine.
• Moodle is just not designed to cope with my specific group of
learners or customers.
• We have all our stuff on *******, it’s just not worth the
hassle of switching to Moodle.
• With Moodle, you need to be on computers all the time.
• Students will love Moodle because it is online and in 'their
world‘. And also,
• Students will not enjoy the interaction that a class
• Proper support is not available with open source software.
• It puts the teaching profession at risk.
• There is no way to measure true learning.
• eLearning is for people who are too lazy to go the traditional
• There’s no way to judge the quality of the eLearning program.
• There's nobody to blame if it all goes wrong.
WHY WOULD MOODLE
IMPLEMENTATION FAIL: EXPERIENCES
What is expected from teachers, colleges
• Willingness to administer and explore
• Dropping process adamancy
• Dropping insecurity about content & methodology
• Keep Moodle away from internal politics
• Readiness to give a long stint to Moodle
• Readiness to understand that Moodle is just a tool; people
need to make things happen
What is expected from consultants & technology
• Proper guidance and recommendations on hosting
• Clear work out on enabling & disabling features
• Focus on how creatively colleges can use Moodle
• Most important: help colleges understand full potential of
Moodle and then help them utilize it phase wise
How to make Moodle interesting - I
• Using it regularly and to its potential; this itself is really
• Make use of forums, glossary, database, wiki
– Glossary as final revision tool
– Database as formulae storage
– Wiki as concept explanation place
• Make use of badges
How to make Moodle interesting - II
• See if you can buy multimedia content; if not get it made for
– Check whether you can get interns from media or design field
• Make students participate
– Let them run some courses of their interest
• Experimentation and continuous evaluation of what works