Moodle is an Open Source Course Management System (CMS), also known as a Learning Management System (LMS) or a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It has become very popular among educators around the world as a tool for creating online dynamic web sites for their students. To work, it needs to be installed on a web server somewhere, either on one of your own computers or one at a web hosting company.
What is Moodle?
The focus of the Moodle project is always on giving educators the best tools to manage and promote learning, but there are many ways to use Moodle:
- Moodle has features that allow it to scale to very large deployments and hundreds of thousands of students, yet it can also be used for a primary school or an education hobbyist.
- Many institutions use it as their platform to conduct fully online courses, while some use it simply to augment face-to-face courses (known as blended learning).
- Many of our users love to use the activity modules (such as forums, databases and wikis) to build richly collaborative communities of learning around their subject matter (in the social constructionist tradition), while others prefer to use Moodle as a way to deliver content to students (such as standard SCORM packages) and assess learning using assignments or quizzes.
Moodle è un software progettato per aiutare gli educatori a creare corsi on-line di alta qualità. E' completamente basato sul web e mette a disposizione di docenti e studenti una serie di strumenti finalizzati all'apprendimento a distanza. Ad esempio, il software permette ai docenti, in modo semplice ed intuitivo, di pubblicare e rendere accessibile agli studenti i Learning Object, di veicolare comunicazioni, di somministrare compiti / esercitazioni, test ed altro ancora. Inoltre da agli studenti la possibilità di effettuare degli elaborati in modalità collaborativa.
The ecosystem of apps, addons and customizations is unmatched in online learning management systems. It's the Wordpress of the LMS world.
I absolutely loved the variety in course content that Moodle offered. My instructors could post links to audio, video, blogs, etc. I had one instructor who left MP3 audio feedback for all of the grades, and this was a very nice touch.
The reason Moodle would work well for a high school or co-op group is that it forces thought and participation through forum discussions. When you are in a Moodle class, you can't get credit for simply showing up and sitting at a desk for an hour; you have to post and contribute to the discussion. It might be a bit of a challenge for a middle school-aged group.
The only disadvantage I could see was that it seemed that some teachers had difficulty getting the grade section set up. Although I have not used this end of the program, I can say that about 25% of my teachers had to delay or "fix" something in this section, so it is probably a little tricky to figure out at first.
However, once up and running, the grading worked great, and I could instantly see my grades, feedback, and grade average for the class.
Overall, I found Moodle to be a very effective tool.