Friday, 15 July 2011

The New Look Moodle...

Finally, the new Moodle theme has been applied and all users will see the new colour schemes.

Staff can build their unit areas safe in the knowledge that they will not lose any information or resources. Some of the key things to look out for with the new theme are 'Sticky Blocks' - these are the blocks on the left and right columns that are permanent, or 'sticky'.

For example the 'Quick Links' jump menu (previously called the Course Menu) is an
excellent tool that enables users to jump straight to a particular section in the unit, rather than scrolling down the page. The other advantage is that all other week/topic content is hidden to simplify the screen and reduce disctractions.

The right hand blocks are dynamic in that they pull information from various places:
  • Notifications draw together information from within Moodle, including Announcements, Events and the Calendar;
  • Assessments identifies assessments from within Moodle, as well as information from the Coursework Receipting System including details of extensions and receipts (for students) and details of total submissions etc (for staff);
  • Resources brings together information from Reading Lists (further reading, items to buy, etc) and Equella files (past exam papers and other reusable content).

When logging into Moodle, all staff should see at least two areas - a personal Sandbox (where you can play about with the various tools available) and the Staff Resource Area (which contains excellent resources such as the Moodle Training Guides and How to Moodle Moodle).

Further to these two areas, you will likely see other areas that you will be teaching - you can use the WebForm to manage staff enrollments to these unit too.

Having said all that, there are still a few kinks in the system so if you do come across anything unexpected, please drop me a quick email to make sure we are aware of all problems, and of course if there are any questions, concerns or general points, feel free to contact me directly or share your thoughts in the comments section.

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This work by Peter Reed is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.

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