Friday, January 1, 2016

Moodling in 2015

Happy New Year to all Moodlers worldwide! On the first day of this year I thought I would jot down some highlights of my Moodle journey in 2015.
  • I gave a talk at iMoot 2015 on how to make peer assessment work in Moodle, which was later featured in Moodle News.



    And who says online conferences are not good for networking? At the iMoot I connected with a local Moodler, Michelle Chawla, who runs Tamarind Tree, an inspiring school for tribal schoolchildren north of Mumbai. Check out Michelle's talk at the iMoot.
  • In June I set up this blog! Good timing because I had a place to share my thoughts as soon as MoodleCloud was launched in early July. See my post and a related discussion on moodle.org.
  • With my colleague Andy Nobes I facilitated two online courses in research writing for a global audience of developing country researchers. One of these courses had 367 participants and the other - INASP's first MOOC - had more than 1700 participants!
  • I set up and facilitated a new course on the Moodle site of the organisation I work for (INASP). The course was for librarians in Ghana, and it was about copyright and licensing of research publications. Read a short summary of the course here.
  • I wrote a series of 17 lessons on the research communication lifecycle, which are now being used in INASP's research writing and proposal writing courses on INASP Moodle. I developed these lessons with eXeLearning as this is a great tool to develop content that can be made available online and given in exactly the same format as downloadable files. See my comparison of three authoring tools: Moodle Lesson, Moodle Book, and eXeLearning.
  • I wrote multiple-choice quiz questions for the above lessons and created quizzes using the Moodle Quiz tool. In our research writing course, learners must pass each weekly quiz by scoring at least 80%. They are however allowed an unlimited number of attempts. I initially thought these "check your understanding" quizzes could be too simple as they only test comprehension of the lesson content, but after seeing that most learners made multiple attempts to pass the quiz I realised they could be a bit challenging - which is a good thing! Moodle Quiz is an amazing tool with a vast array of options to develop engaging quizzes. 
  • We started awarding digital badges to successful online course participants on INASP Moodle. Andy Nobes designed the badges and I took care of the settings to automatically award badges based on activity or course completion.
  • In August I facilitated a 1-day workshop at Thai Nguyen University in Vietnam on open source educational technology, with an emphasis on Moodle.
  • Near the end of the year, I was invited to give a talk at the first MoodleMoot in India! This is going to take place next month in Delhi and I can't wait! I'm really thankful to Jaswinder Singh and the rest of the organising committee for their hard work.
Hopefully 2016 will be another exciting year of Moodling and contributing in a small way to improving learning experiences.

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