Teaching with Moodle

Large Department Best Practices

 
Picture of Oliver James
Large Department Best Practices
 

Dear all,

I was wondering if people could share with me the best way to approach using Moodle with a large department.

We currently have a Maths department with 15 members of teaching staff. I have setup the courses with one course per year group, but they have said that it will not work for them in this format.

The issue is that they do not want to be scrolling for ages past every other member of staffs assignments before they get to their own. I suggested that they had one course per teacher but they then said that they wanted the ability should they wish to see other teachers assignments. 

The other issue is the resources like word documents. They don’t want to duplicate documents and they may wish to extend a child’s learning by using work from a more advanced year group. This is another reason that having one course per year group would not work. 

Finally, we would like to avoid enrolling the students in many courses as the Boost theme only seems to handle a few before making you search for your courses.

Many thanks in advance.

Oliver.

 
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Mary Cooch
Re: Large Department Best Practices
Documentation writersMoodle Course Creator Certificate holdersMoodle HQParticularly helpful MoodlersTestersTranslators

How is the current year course set up? Are the teachers' assignments in their own section or are they interspersed with other activities in other sections?  If they are in their own section - are you able with your Moodle installation to install extra plugins? There is a course format called Collapsible topics and it presents you with a list of the topics in -er! -collapsed form and you click the one you want. So if they had their own section they could just click "Mrs Cooch" and it would only show that, for example, and they would still be able to view other teachers' materials. 

As for Word documents, can you elaborate more on how these are used? Because it might be better to use Moodle Pages or Books rather than Word documents.

As for Boost making you search for your courses, can you say what version of Moodle you are using?

 
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Picture of Oliver James
Re: Large Department Best Practices
 

Hi Mary,

Thank you for getting back to me.

I am using Moodle 3.3.1 and if a user has lots of courses they are displayed on the dashboard page on the left hand side under the heading My Courses. The issue is that if they click the More link it does not personalise the list of courses it just takes you to the course categories page where they are all listed. It seems to lose the personalisation.

Currently we have one course per year group so Year 7 Maths, Year 8 Maths, Year 9 Maths etc. The course itself they are using the topic headings as thinks like algebra, shapes, trig etc. Then within the topics they have various worksheets and their assignments.  We are able to install our plugins so that should not be a problem. 

With the books / pages vs Word documents, how would it help it we changed the format of them? The issue is that if a student in say Year 7 completed all of the algebra work then the teacher would like to set them work from the Year 8 Maths course but we dont need the student having full access to the entire course. I am thinking that if the teachers want to set extension work then they re-upload the word document on an as and when needed basis. We have the storage capacity for it so space is not an issue, the issue is that if one copy of the word document is updated that the rest of them will not be.

Kind regards
Oliver.

 
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Mary Cooch
Re: Large Department Best Practices
Documentation writersMoodle Course Creator Certificate holdersMoodle HQParticularly helpful MoodlersTestersTranslators

Oliver - how about you start a new thread on the subject of the Word documents, repeating what you said here? Then people can comment specifically on that instead of three questions being merged into one in this thread? Thankswink

 
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Picture of Robert Brenstein
Re: Large Department Best Practices
 
We have over 40 instructors offering almost 100 courses this semester with around 1500 active Moodle users each semester. We ask instructors about the Moodle course setup during the course planning stage. Larger courses with multiple groups have coordinators/supervisors assigned who are in charge of coordinating that within courses. There is no single solution that works for all, so we have many different relations between courses shown in Student Information System (course catalog) and Moodle courses, although most are 1-to-1. There are courses with multiple groups that have a single Moodle course. There are single courses in SIS that have multiple Moodle courses (one for each student/project group or instructor). Occasionally, there are multiple courses that share a single Moodle course. Some courses with multiple groups have group-specific Moodle courses as well as a meta course for stuff common to all courses (and direct links between the two to make switching easy). All Moodle courses are password-protected and students enroll themselves, getting passwords (enrollment keys if you will) from their instructors, usually in the first session. We use template courses and the database system (custom) which produces programmatically strings needed for setting up courses -- this allow us to set up all Moodle courses within a day or two each semester.
 
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