I'm sure I'm not the first person to ask how best to combat the scroll of death. I have a course in the topics format that is getting a bit out of hand with regard to how much scrolling is required to find what you want. So, I was just wondering if any of you have a good way of managing this. The simpler for the user the better.
Many thanks in advance.
Thanks a lot.
I've been looking at this (in moodle2), and Course Menu is now essentially redundant thanks to the Navigation block.
I also noticed that, when you use the Collapsed Topics course format, if you haven't explicitly set a name for a topic, then topicname appears in the Course Menu instead of Topic 2 etc. So am of the view Collapsed Topics + Navigation block is more effective IF you set names for each topic.
This does require adding something at the server level, but does not require users to know anything very special and is a lot easier then creating HTML blocks.
This is a brief video I had made last week:
The distinctiveness of this is a 'single section' format as well that does NOT display the section 0 material on every page.
This also keeps things simple: one layer of navigation.
My ideal is two. Side and top:
================PAGE 1==PAGE 2==PAGE 3==PAGE 4=============
.Item 1 |
.Item 2 |
.Item 4 |
But I have not seen a simple version of this.
I can give a login to my Moodle site if anyone wants to lok at this in practice.
@Itamar and others.
I posted here http://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=153776&parent=696051 the Section Menu for 1.9.
There is now some code for 2+ to do the same thing from Lei Zhang. I have listed the links in GitHub here: http://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=168810#p743586
To clarify: NO coding/HTNL required by the user, and creates a simple version of your code with links to each section.
Basic things that may help, if you are giving long instructions in the course lobby you might try using add a web page and titling the page to indicate that it is instructions. Another possibility is to initially set you class as 2 topics, put every thing into topic 2, use the WYSIWYG editor bar and basic html coding to make your own "menu" like the one here- Hyperlink each bit from topic 2 into the correct table cell then hide topic 2
|Topic one name it||Topic 2 Name it||Topic 3 Name it||Topic 4 Name it||Topic 5 name it|
|Topic 1 Lecture-||Topic 2 lecture||Topic 3 lecture||Topic 4 lecture||Topic 5 lecture|
|Topic 1 Lesson 1- title||Topic 2 Lesson 1 title||Topic 3 lesson 1 title||Topic 4 Lesson 1 title||Topic 5 Lesson 1 title|
|Topic 1 Lesson 2- title||Topic 2 Lesson 2 title||Topic 3 Lesson 2 title||Topic 4 Lesson 2 title||Topic 5 Lesson 2 title|
|Topic 1 Lesson 3 title||Topic 2 Lesson 3 title||Topic 3 Lesson 3 title||Topic 4 Lesson 3 title||Topic 5 Lesson 3 title|
|Topic 1 Quiz||Topic 2 Quiz||Topic 3 Quiz||Topic 4 Lesson 4 title||Topic 5 Lesson 4 title|
I do find that numbering each activity and color coding each topic goes a long way to keeping navigation simple too.
If your html skills are not strong multible book instances with clearly number 'book' names can be used to group written and video lessons then the same sort of linking can be used in those pages.
Great idea! Some of our departments actually use this approach a slightly different way.
They will use a Meta course for a central repository of files and upload to just Files area. (no links on the home page) Only the top summary section will show so the student doesn't actually see anything in the meta course.
They can then provide a link to any resource located in the Meta course to any one of their child courses and they no longer have to upload the same file multiple times and if they edit a file they just have to upload it to one location.
What you describe is a neat idea too and solves the problem of using files over several course too.
At the moment, the technique I described above is not working in Moodle for Language Teaching since the upgrade to 2.0. but I expect it'll be fixed soon.
"Scroll of Death" (Great Term) sort of belongs with the "Continue to Death" and a few other Moodle Inevitables. Thanks for the Tweet HF and everyone for some good ideas.
I use an HTML block and put section titles with links (not as fancy as Itamar's), folder links in sections for docs used in that section and a version of Activity Locking that hides what a student is not qualified to see and places a check mark next to what they have done.
Love all the suggestions. I so need to do this!!!!! Need More Time....sigh......
I found another way. A 2009 resource which I think many do not use or know how to install. It's cool and it helps me to keep my courses short.
It's about abstraction - abstraction a whole section into one link.
PSSSSST....CHECK IT OUT HERE.
Are you using this on Moodle 2.0?
I'm using Moodle 1.9.7. I doubt if it'll work in Moodle 2.0.
Here's a video I did showing how it works.
To set it up requires access to the server side, some knowledge of HTML, editing some CSS code, installing the original Accordion Resource Editor, a keen eye for code details, and lots of patience. But nothing too complicated.
(I saw the Wedding on TV - loved it!)
Here's another idea from Kevin Steeves on YouTube. He calls it "forcing topic blocks". It uses the fact that you can access each topic in a course independently by appending &topic=x where x is the topic number to the URL.
You can find his video here (sorry, couldn't get it to embed);
I have tried this approach and found that it to be very attractive. Unfortunately, I've also discovered a problem, which is that because the links produced by Moodle (e.g. in breadcrumbs and on the homepage) are all to the root URL of the course, when those links are clicked, it serves whichever topic was last accessed rather than the first topic. I should point out that I'm using a testing server for this and can't test with multiple users.
I really like this approach and would like to use it, but can't until this issue is fixed.
I hope this is the correct place for this - let me know if not
Hi there- yes I think I know the workaround (similar to here) I don't quite get your question though - "it serves whichever topic was last accessed rather than the first topic" Do you mean when a user comes back to the course another time? If so then yes, I guess so, because that "show only one topic" option is a user specific option, so if they clicked a button/text link to take them to say topic4 - then when they come back to the course another day, Moodle will have remembered they were only showing topic 4 and only show that. However, if you make your links in topic 0 with instructions, they still have the option of clicking the other links from there so I haven't experienced issues with it. I tend to make an HTML block with the links as text links too and add it top left so it is like the navigation of a website / a contents block -that helps some users too. If I misunderstood your question, then sorry - could you clarify?
Thanks very much for your reply. Yes, I realise that my description is not as clear as it could be.
A little context might help: I'm making self-access CPD tutorials which all follow the same format: introduction, video, quiz self test, feedback and evaluation.
Because my students probably have never used moodle before, and may never again, I'd prefer the navigation and layout to be as simple as possible. Thus I'd just like a page with links to the 4 or 5 resources they're using and nothing else.
In addition, I'd like a new visitor to the course to always see topic 1 first and in testing I haven't been able to ensure this.
I made a short video showing a dummy course and what I'm trying to achieve.
If you have any thoughts on this - even 'give up, it can't be done', I'd be very grateful!
If you use the solution in Mary's video below (links to Topics in a side block) you could use Topic 0 to put the items you want users to always see when they log on.
I hadn't seen Mary's video before. Wish I had - the solution very simple and elegant.
Paul- I looked at your screencast and you seem only to have 5 items in your course- intro/video/quiz/evaluation/feedback, so why do you need to "defeat the scroll of death/force topics? As Glenys said, why not just add your 5 items as they are into topic0, hide topic 1 and remove all the other topic sections? (Or do you have other items in each topic section that you want to display?)
I have had good success putting my visuals and graphics in Block 0, fill content in each of the 'topic' sections or links out of Moodle, don't hide the topics or the links don't work. Leave topic 1 blank, simply change the course setting back to 1 (1 has no content), when you need ot edit, up the topics number in settings. I am up to 30 active but unseen topics, my users link to it, I only see it in the scroll of death view when I need to edit a topic.
Yes, the links are within the same server, but we haven't had any issues with folks having access issues. I've just started experimenting with visual vs linear, but the flexibility is there! My samples are simple, but - you have to start somewhere
Using tables and images we are able to link to resources and activities really easily, and also create a lot of content with the need for much scrolling.
Couple of screenshots below
Using a table with images and links.
All resources and activities are 'hidden'.
More of the same.
Using 128 x 128 icons (as sourced on Google images) gives it a strong visual look without it looking too cluttered.
We've even created a 'hidden' area for tutors.
The top two links link to 1) Activities and 2) the Grade book.
Is this tweeked version is compatibe with Moodle 2.0 and how I can get that?