I have a plan for a new activity module about which I’d like to get some feedback before embarking on the development process.
The working name of the new module is ‘SelfStudy’. It will allow students to create their own questions and quizzes for self study.
(message to the administrator/facilitator of this forum: if this is not the best place to make such an announcement please feel free to move this post to a more appropriate place. Thank you.)
A summary of the new SelfStudy moduleThis will be a module to allow students to create their own questions and quizzes which they can access whenever they want to quiz themselves. Furthermore, they will be able to share their quizzes and questions with their peers. The teachers’ main role will be to make ‘Self Study’ possible by creating a SelfStudy activity.
Motivation for developing the SelfStudy moduleAs a teacher that believes in the importance of promoting ‘Autonomous Learning’, I am aware that a key feature that Moodle lacks is a tool or environment in which students can initiate and create their own study activities. Certainly, there are numerous activities that teachers can create that allow students to participate in and contribute to the learning process. However, present activities tend to rely to a considerable extent on the teacher to create and facilitate learning tasks. The intention of the SelfStudy module will be allow students to take the initiative to study for themselves.
Students will be able to ...
- Create their own questions and quizzes, which they can do at any time (even on mobile phones?)
- Share their questions and quizzes with other students – if the teacher has allowed this
- Create questions in a group, i.e. work on a set of questions with their peers
- Categorise questions in the same way a teacher can do in the Quiz module
- Tag (sub-categorise?) their questions
- Search for certain questions (both their own and shared); the tags will help in this
- Access a page within a moodle course (perhaps via a SelfStudy block) which lists all the quizzes they have made and their peers have shared.
- Evaluate their own and peers questions
- Create quizzes from ‘Smart Question Lists’. These lists will contain questions that have certain “transient characteristics”, as well as more fixed characteristics, e.g. questions not recently done, questions rarely answered correctly, questions recently added, questions not answered correctly more than 5 times, questions that have been ‘highly recommended’ by students or the teacher, questions that have certain tags, questions that they themselves have not yet tried or got right, questions made by certain people, e.g. the teacher, etc.
Teachers will be able to ...
- Create a SelfStudy activity
- Indicate how many questions students should make, or allow students to make as many as they want
- Set whether or not students can share questions
- Set what type of questions students can make, e.g. multiple choice, short answer, etc.
- Set a start and end date, if any
- Set whether or not the task is a group or individual activity
- Indicate how many points, if any, the SelfStudy task is worth in the course grade
- Give a grade for the quality of question (manual grading), and/or the number of questions a student has made, and/or the number of questions a student has got right.
- Access a page within a Moodle course (perhaps via a SelfStudy block) which lists all the quizzes students have made in order to check, and if necessary evaluate and grade the questions.
- Import questions from the already existing Question bank to let students use in their own self created quizzes
- See who has made a question in a quiz by clicking on a link in the top left of the question frame
Question typesMy thinking at the moment is that this module will make use of the question types that are already part of the Quiz module. However, in the initial stage of development, the module will probably just contain two or three types: Matching, Multi choice, and Short Answer.
The ‘Questions’ feature in the Administration blockJust as this new SelfStudy module should not be confused with the Quiz module, it should also not be confused with the ‘Questions’ link in the Administration block of every course. This Questions link allows teachers to go directly to creating and editing questions without having to go through the Quiz activity module or a pre-existing Quiz. However, it should be possible for the teacher to import questions she has made from this Questions bank to the SelfStudy module so that students can use them in their own self-created quizzes.
What about ‘roles’ in 1.7?I am aware that the new roles feature in Moodle 1.7 will allow teachers to give students the right to make their own questions and quizzes using the standard Quiz module. This would perhaps seem to make my suggestion of a SelfStudy module redundant. However, I do not think this will be the case, since by giving students the right to make quizzes, it will still not be possible for the teacher to see which students have made questions and quizzes. Furthermore, with a large class, this could lead to a chaotic course. So, unless I am missing something with the new roles feature, I do not think that it will supplant a SelfStudy module.
Questions to fellow Moodlers:
- Do you think teachers would appreciate such an activity module?
- Do you think students would appreciate the ability to be able to create and share their own questions and quizzes?
- Is there a third-party module already out there that allows students to make their own questions and quizzes?
- Am I right that the new roles feature will not make a SelfStudy module redundant?
- What are the main features that you would like to see in such a module?
- Are there any features of Moodle that make such a module impractical, impossible, or even dangerous (i.e. a security risk)?
Finally, I should add that I am not a programmer, so will be working with a programmer to develop this module.