Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Moodle training news

Last week was our official end of term and so classes are now over for the academic year, which opens the way for other activities such as staff training, and this morning I delivered the Introduction and Web 2.0 sessions for our Moodle vle. I of course run sessions most weeks for these and usually attract three of four candidates for each, but this morning sessions were very much full with fourteen for the first and sixteen for the second, almost filling our training room. I think I could a make tentative assumption from this that for many staff the idea of training during term time is still difficult to manage. Overall the whole morning ran very smoothly and candidates have been generous and encouraging with feedback. Of all the aspects in using the vle that we covered today -Forums and Chat seemed to attract the most enthusiasm and time, all very good, and often amusing.

On a common thread, I am getting on with the new course notes for the phase three training and really looking forward to rolling that out in September, which brings me into a very interesting and chance meeting that I had with a colleague who on their own initiative have a new mobile learning project that will get underway in the coming academic year. The thrust behind the proposal is that for some students, finding themselves timetabled into rooms with no computing facilities, wouldn’t it be a good idea to provide some low cost, low spec netbooks and make use of the college WiFi provide access to web resources including Cloud apps. You can certainly see the rationale here, when you have group of students where course delivery has increasingly drawn in the use of the technology in both teaching and learning style, suddenly get themselves dropped back into pre-digital, though not impossible, does take some degree of willing flexibility. And so if all does indeed go according to plan, in the coming year you will be able to provide students timetabled into those rooms with standard Word style electronic hand-outs distributed from the vle, very nice, very smooth, much better than issuing ball point pens; by the way the original patent for these was issued on 30 October 1888, to John Loud. Just a thought though, as MS Word actually dates back to 1984, which makes the technology almost thirty years old itself, is it not time for us to move on once more? A comment that drew a somewhat frowned expression, to which I replied - book into my Moodle phase 3 training program, you will enjoy it.

Please stay in touch for updates, regards Barry


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