Comparisons and advocacy

Canvas vs. Moodle

 
Picture of Sam Mudle
Forums - (was: Re: Canvas vs. Moodle)
Particularly helpful Moodlers

The problem I have now is that I'm *really* tired of D2L. As you point out, it's really tough to get any features added, and the interface really hasn't evolved at all. But the guy who administers D2L at my college loves it and doesn't want to change. I met with him recently and he said something about putting his foot down with D2L "and this time they're going to listen!" I thought, Good luck with that.

I was a student this year in a Canvas-run course and also was paid to teach a D2L course as well.

In the 14 years I've been using Moodle I love it more and more.., but IMHO the single most glaring issue is Moodle's really primitive way of grading forum posts.  I use forums all of the time, and other than quiz and assignment, forum is the most used feature of the website.

In D2L, you can assign a forum as an assignment.  When you grade the forum posts,  you get a list of students. On each student, you automatically get a list all of their forum posts for that particular forum assignment.  You can then post feedback and give a grade.

In Moodle, it's a mess.  You have to assign a rating by clicking the user post. It's not super easy to just bring up all of the posts by one student because you have to hunt around for them.  There is no button called GRADE ALL POSTS.  For students who haven't posted, you have to then go into the grade book and type in zeros for those students.  It's a huge headache.


 
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Picture of Peter Seaman
Re: Forums - (was: Re: Canvas vs. Moodle)
Particularly helpful Moodlers

You make a good point about the ease of grading discussions in D2L and the seeming lack of ease of grading discussions in Moodle. I've asked some of the folks who designed Moodle forums why the forums were designed that way, but I've never gotten a really satisfying answer.

I suspect some of the apparent muddle of grading Moodle discussions stems from Moodle's social constructionist pedagogy, which posits that educators are supposed to care more about building knowledge through discussion (or "negotiation") than they are about transactional grading, which is something D2L really excels at.

I work with D2L and the other day an instructor said, "Hey! D2L has this polling feature my students and I can use to evaluate discussions!" I thought, Haven't we gone back to the future? But I had to admit I have never seen an instructor use this feature in D2L. Most instructors use discussions to assess student work and assign grades, and want the easiest and quickest way to do this, which is kinda sad, really.

 
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Picture of Sam Mudle
Re: Forums - (was: Re: Canvas vs. Moodle)
Particularly helpful Moodlers

I suspect some of the apparent muddle of grading Moodle discussions stems from Moodle's social constructionist pedagogy, which posits that educators are supposed to care more about building knowledge through discussion (or "negotiation") than they are about transactional grading, which is something D2L really excels at.

Yeah, I think the forum ratings system was really meant for students to rate each other.  It was not designed for teachers to apply a rubric to the post - which is what D2L allows.

 
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moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Forums - (was: Re: Canvas vs. Moodle)
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers

Good point, but have you written this up in Moodle Tracker? I wouldn't suggest this is a trivial change, but I don't think it would require a huge rewrite.... maybe. 

@Peter,  "Most instructors use discussions ... and want the easiest and quickest way to do this, ... ." Yes, agreed, but I suspect that for Teachers it is all about time, the less time they have to spend on something gives them more time to spend elsewhere.  

 
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