Teaching with Moodle

Reusing Modules Across Courses

 
Picture of Les Bell
Reusing Modules Across Courses
 

I'm taking on a new role, managing development and delivery of blended learning courses for a university/industry partnership. As we get underway, I hope to take advantage of Moodle features like learning plans, competencies, outcomes, etc.

Our previous development efforts have resulted in a lot of duplication of both effort and materials. I'd like to eliminate that by breaking our courses into "modules" comprising resources such as lecture slides and related activities (quizzes, pages, etc.), ideally with the ability to share a module across several courses. In a perfect world, I'd like to be able to maintain the module in one place, e.g. uploading a new set of slides and having them appear in the various courses which use that module.

I guess what I'm asking is: is there a canonically correct, Moodle-specific way to address this requirement?

For example, suppose a two-day course comprises six different modules (which relate to industry-standardized work roles and tasks). Another two-course uses four of the same modules. What's the best way to share modules between courses? Should I be looking at SCORM?

(Yes, I'm aware of the Reusing activities documentation page, but am hoping for something a little more automatic.)

And a related question: how does this relate to competencies and learning plans? I'd like our industry partners to be able to see the progress of their employees - after all, they're funding us and I'd like to demonstrate value. ;)

Any and all advice gratefully accepted. ;)

--- Les

 
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Picture of Les Bell
Re: Reusing Modules Across Courses
 

Sorry - wrong link for the Reusing activities Moodle Docs page - it should, of course, be https://docs.moodle.org/34/en/Reusing_activities.

--- Les

 
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moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Reusing Modules Across Courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers

Yes there is a way of doing this, but it gets seriously messy and very difficult to maintain. The essential root of that problem is the students need to be enrolled in one course and also the course that you are drawing the materials and activities from. 

The alternative is to set up your courses with the materials in them, as different courses and create a series of Meta links between each required course. 

Child course has all the students that are enrolled in the course but no materials. 

Meta course has all the materials in one unit, but no students. 

Apparently, the Teacher assigned needs to be the Teacher in both courses. So in one child course, Teacher A is enrolled and in another child course has Teacher B. Both Teacher A and B have a Teacher role in the Meta Link course. 

One Child course can be connected to many Meta link courses and many Child courses can be connected to a single Meta link course, without anyone being aware of another class's presence or use of the course. 

That is the closest you are likely to get to the automaticity you mention I suspect. A lot of the other kinds of functionality you mention will have to be looked at as trial by error, I am afraid. 

 
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moi!!! it is what is is...
Re: Reusing Modules Across Courses
Documentation writersParticularly helpful Moodlers

Edit: 

"The alternative is to set up your courses with the materials in them, as different courses and create a series of Meta links between each required  course. " Is actually very badly worded, sorry

It should read "...set up different courses courses with the required materials and use Meta links to allow students to use them."

The documentation should explain it better. 

 
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Picture of Les Bell
Re: Reusing Modules Across Courses
 

Thanks, Colin - that's very useful! Let me just check that I'm understanding: the idea is that the parent course acts as a kind of repository, from which the child courses pull their material?

I shall go and read the meta links documentation forthwith, and then do some experimenting. This is one of those things where if I get it right at the beginning, I can save everyone a lot of work and pain - but if I get it wrong, I can make a dog's breakfast of the whole thing.

Thanks again.

--- Les

 
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