October 2017 Moodle News

zombie moodle cow-happy halloween!

Winter/Spring 2018 Course Materials Adoptions due by Sunday, Nov. 5

The Textbook portal is now open, and course material adoptions for winter and spring terms are due in SPIRE before pre-registration opens on Monday, November 6, 2017. For more, see About Amazon Course Materials for UMass. Note: The Amazon Course Materials tool (scheduled to be discontinued) will be used at least through Fall 2018.

Winter Session & Spring Course Requests Open on Monday, November 6

Pre-registration and Moodle course requests for winter and spring terms open in SPIRE on Monday, November 6, 2017. For details on requesting Moodle see Request Your Moodle Course-Overview. To reuse a previous Moodle course, first request a new empty course, then use the Import tool to copy the previous course into it. For details on how to reuse a previous course, see Reuse a Moodle Course Using Import. Note: Certain item types can not be imported and must be recreated in your new course.  

New Method for Integrating Moodle & UMass Libraries Course Materials

As of Thursday, November 2, 2017, connecting Moodle courses with Library Reserves will be accomplished via an External Tool activity (LTI). After November 2, you will not be able to add a Library Course Materials block—you’ll need to add an External Tool activity and select the preconfigured service, “UMass Library Course Materials.” When importing a previous Moodle course into a WInter or Spring 2018 Moodle course, the UMass Libraries Course Materials block will not be copied forward and must be replaced using the External tool method. For instructions see, Give Students access to Library Course Materials through Moodle. Note: This will not affect Fall 2017 courses in which the Library Course Materials Block is in use: UMass Libraries Course Materials blocks already added to Fall 2017 courses will still work.  

September/October Moodle Changes

The following changes have been made to Moodle since the start of fall semester:

  • Improved Course Import Users with the role “Import from this Course,” can now see the Gradebook Setup page for the course they are importing (but not the course Grader Report containing student names and data).
  • UMass Libraries Course Materials Moodle and UMass Libraries Course Materials (Library Reserves) are now integrated via an External Tool rather than a block. (See above)
  • Group Self-Selection Students can now see the names of other students in the group they join.
  • TA Role capabilities TAs can now see the Enrolled Users page. (This replaces the Participants page.)
  • Security updates

Fall Workshops & Events Continue

We still have quite a few events coming up in our fall series of hands-on workshops and brown bag discussions on technology in teaching and learning. This semester we are focusing on accessibility. We also have events on copyright and social media, and you can join an online discussion about videoconferencing, by video conference! Our schedule can be found on the Innovate@ UMass Events page.

Help and Resources for Instructors

With midterm past, and the end of the semester in sight, we want to remind you that our friendly and capable consultants in the Instructional Media Lab are available to assist you with importing exam scores, working with your Moodle Gradebook, and other seasonal Moodle activities. To learn more about Moodle or to get help with instructional technologies, you can:

  • Review our support documentation at: http://www.umass.edu/it/support/moodle
  • Contact the Instructional Media Lab (instruct@umass.edu | 413-545-2823) with a question, or to set up a time for a one-on-one consultation.