March Moodle News

The Moodle cow in a field of yellow flowers on a sunny day.

We’re approaching mid-semester!

This Moodle News includes information about Spring Workshops, Summer and Fall Moodle Course Requests, Summer and Fall Echo360 Course Requests, Removal of Old Moodle Courses, Moodle Tip of the Month, What’s New in Moodle, and Moodle Help and Resources.

Spring 2019 Workshops!

Our Spring 2019 workshop series has begun. This semester, we’re offering options for working with Moodle and Echo360, creating and editing media in Camtasia and iMovie, Podcasting basics, and more. To find out more and register, see the full list of workshops on the Innovation Events page.

Can’t decide which workshops to take? Have questions? Contact the Instructional Media Lab for help in deciding which workshops are right for you. Call us at 413-545-2823 or email

Summer and Fall Moodle course requests begin April 1, 2019

Summer and Fall Moodle course requests will be available in SPIRE on April 1, 2019. Don’t forget that each semester you will need to request Moodle for the courses you are teaching.

For details, see:

Course Materials for Fall 2019

Instructors, please be reminded that course materials for your Fall 2019 courses are due on Sunday, March 31, 2019.

Request your Summer and Fall Echo360 courses

Echo360 course requests for the Summer and Fall 2019 semesters are now available in SPIRE. Just like Moodle, each semester you will need to request Echo360 for the courses you want to use it in. While making your request you can specify that you’d like to:

  • Automatically record in-person class meetings in Classrooms Equipped with Lecture Capture.
  • Re-use recordings from a previous semester.
  • Create screencasts and record custom lessons for students to watch outside of class with Echo360 Personal Capture.

For step by step instructions, see Request Lecture Capture. Once your Echo360 courses are ready, it’s easy to give students access to Echo360 recordings through Moodle.

Removal of Old Moodle Courses

Instructors have access to Moodle courses for 18 months after the semester in which they were taught.

Please, backup any course content you do not wish to lose, including course materials, grades, and student submissions. To ensure you have everything you need from your course, see Backup a Moodle Course.

If there is a possibility you will not teach a course again within the 18th-month window courses are kept on Moodle, we strongly recommend you download a Moodle (.mbz) backup file and store it in a safe place such as your UMass Amherst Box account. When the need arises, you’ll be able to contact the Instructional Media Lab and share the file to have the course restored. No worries!

Moodle Tip of the Month: Give students extended time in quizzes and assignments

Occasionally students will need additional time to complete assignments. In quizzes, you can override the quiz settings for a student or group of students to give them additional time, attempts, or more. For assignments, you can use the Grant extension option to change the due-date and time for students to submit their work.

For more help using these features, you can always contact the Instructional Media Lab ( | 413-545-2823) for assistance.

What’s new in Moodle?

UMass Amherst IT is planning to keep Moodle at UMass Amherst and Open UMass on Moodle version 3.1 for the 2018-19 academic year.

We may periodically add features and will perform security updates during our regularly scheduled update window (Thursday mornings), but no major upgrade is planned at this time.

Moodle Help and Resources for Instructors

To learn more about Moodle or to get help, you can: