DeAnza College/Moodle 1.9

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Owing to security "issues" with Moodle 1.6, on the advice of our Tech Support team, the faculty steering committee approved the immediate upgrade to Moodle 1.9 in time for the start of Fall Quarter 2008 with just six weeks from finalizing Summer / school year-end processing to opening Fall quarter student access. This poses some challenges for Faculty and Staff.

  • student guide

Similar but different

Although some displays don't look exactly the same between release 1.6 and 1.9, the functionality is there. In general, everything about an activity is displayed in only one place, usually on the create / update page for that activity type. This is a BIG improvement.

  • Description for activities and resources - may be some changes to the layout, extra blank lines between items in lists
  • Grading information 1.9 - now associated with the graded activities - quizzes, assignments (moved / consolidated from Grades administration display)
  • Assignments

  • Quizzes and questions
  • Forums - 1 hour to make changes to post (was 30 minutes)
    •  ? rating / grading forum posts
    •  ? only replies - instructor adds multiple topics
  • Profile - required fields, show/hide advanced - editor, email digests
  • Messages
  • Choice - rearranged options, required fields
  • Calendar - dated events automatically shifted based on ? master calendar eg. assignment due on the first Friday of the quarter is automatically shifted to reflect date of first Friday in Fall quarter.

DeAnza Catalyst installation

Some Moodle 1.9 options have been pre-set by the DeAnza Catalyst / Moodle Administrator to ensure smooth, consistent access for students.

  • themes - standard - no option for faculty to select

Revised display and functionality

They may look different and some options have been relocated, but the functionality is essentially the same. In some cases, new options have been added.

  • Roles - more options with levels of activity and priviledges - teaching assistants, guests
The Grades functions have changed considerably, but for the better. Mostly, anyway. Really. The new presentation with all the information about a quiz or assignment being connected directly with the activity makes more sense that the old presentation where categories and weighting were separated in the Grades administration displays.

  • assignments
  • quizzes
  • extra credit
  • categories
  • weighting

New functionality in Moodle 1.9

  • Simple effective additions - hide/show advanced button to allow user to control level complexity of information displayed
  • New and enhanced advanced functionality - grading information expaned/added to assignments and quizzes
  • Requires in-depth understanding of advanced features to use - advanced gradebook

  • Advanced gradebook - very complex computation to determine final and partial grades can be incorporated

Removed in 1.9

  • discussion - can't have rating that only instructor and student see - was a nice privacy issue, now public only

Teaching and learning

  • discussion grading - more options for grading posts, including count of posts
  • discussion format - more options but "only replies" seems to have been eliminated which makes reading many posts more time consuming having to access more topics

External links