My project can be located at the following link: Newton’s Moodle
I began this project with beginner’s knowledge level of Moodle. I started by exploring Moodle even more and settled on experimenting with the Lesson module option. I searched for and watched several Moodle tutorial videos and most all of them were out of date. I do not remember finding one that described the current version of Moodle. However, I did find a few that were close and I used the currently offered Help functions and pages through the Moodle site. Those were more helpful when it came to laying out steps for Moodle. I chose this particular theme because it was clean, uncluttered, and had science/math related symbols within the banner.
I outlined my lesson in a similar fashion to that of a textbook. It has four sections (notated by the lack of a ‘previous page’ option on the non-question pages) and the presence of “quick review” questions at the end of each section. I included several videos demonstrating this particular science concept through relevant, real-life applicable situations and science experiments. These videos helped support the Multimedia Principle that we covered in our textbook E-Learning and the Science of Instruction. I also touched on the Redundancy Principle through explaining visuals with words in the text format and, a few times, through the audio covered in the videos.
I attempted to incorporate the Personalization Principle by writing my text narrative in a conversational tone, including potential questions that the learner might think while reading through the text or potential every day situations the learner may or may not encounter. The text was broken down in to smaller parts which supported the Segmenting Principle. I also included worked examples and faded examples for the learner to read and progressively practice.
Once I had outlined the objective I wanted to cover, I created a trial run. The most cumbersome problem I ran in to, from the beginning, was the page load time. It doesn’t matter where you use the internet: from your house, coffee shop, Panera Bread, Delta airlines flight (which had quite an efficient internet connection for a plane), various hotels,…..any of these places and Moodle is going to take much longer to load a single page. This presented a problem in that every question required a page load. It takes a lot of time to upload questions for quizzes and/or tests.
Questions within the Lesson module and questions in separate quizzes and tests had similar but different options available for each. Within the lesson module, I had problems smoothly connecting short answer questions because the answer had to be EXACTLY correct (as in, specifically upper or lower case lettering, spellings, spacing, etc.) This presented a problem in that some questions could have multiple correct answers that are typed out in many different ways. (NOTE: The multiple choice question does give you the option to select multiple answers, but if you need to type in the unit for force….the correct answer could be one of the following: Newtons, newtons, N, n, kg x m/s2, kg(m/s2), kilograms x m/s2, etc. As far as I could tell, the lesson module DOES NOT accommodate it’s answer options for a situation like this.)
The quiz or test option SEPARATE from the lesson module was a bit more functional as far as answer choices were concerned. It does give you the option to mark “anything other than the above indicated answer” as wrong.
Another dilemma I ran in to involved the page connections. When you are creating the lesson, you can link each page via drop down menu options such as: Previous page, This page, next page, “titles of whatever other pages you have created”….etc. If you select “Next Page” after a question page, that current question will reload and you will end up answering the same questions multiple times. In order to answer the question and continue, you must connect a question page directly (via the title) to the page you want it to progress to and to avoid answering the same question multiple times.
In conclusion, I enjoyed working with many features and sections of Moodle. However, there were many characteristics I did not like about it (page load time being the worst offender) and some features I still do not quite understand, or do not believe I would ever need to use. Another feature that I missed within Moodle (both the general area and the lesson module) was spellcheck/autocorrect. However, I can understand why both of these features are left out of the default settings. The multiple choice and true/false questions are great. The short answer question option is partially great within the Lesson Module. It needs an option to cover all other wrong answers without having to list all possibilities. I learned the best method of figuring out Moodle, along with the other technology tools we have learned about this semester, is to find a good tutorial (whether it be in video format or text format), do not be afraid to experiment and click buttons and/or options, and do not be afraid to mess up. The “Undo” option is a wonderful creation.