Review: Committee Manager for Moodle 2.0

Agenda Options

Today’s review Module is the Committee Manager module. This module provides a nice intuitive interface for managing the workings of a committee.

Background
This is a new module for Moodle, created recently by Patrick Thibaudeau. Its not a resource, or learning activity so not really used in teaching as it provides an admin interface for managing a committee and its workings.

What does it do?

This is an academic administration tool. It has a rich feature set for managing members, events, files, meeting dates and agendas all from within the Moodle course interface so ideal for using in a “Moodle staffroom” for subject committees, advisory boards and so forth.

It handles assigning different member levels in the committee including:

  • President
  • Co-President
  • Administrator
  • Member

The levels have different abilities with the member having only read only access and the others having full edit privileges.

There are abilities to manage files and folders as shown below in the images.

File Management

The strongest feature is the Planner which is a bit like Doodle in providing a way to plan events among a range of people with colour coded blocks for scheduling as below.

Committee Planer

Is it simple to install?

The source is managed in GITHUB and the zip file is also downloaded from GitHub so suffers the normal naming issues, however Patrick has catered for this by having the correct folder name included inside the zip to make things easier. A nice touch. The zip when downloaded holds one sub folder which contains the files for the block. You need to upload the comity folder to your mod folder in your Moodle site.

When upgrading through the notifications page, I got no errors and it just installed. There was no new global settings. However, later when testing I found a minor bug which I have passed along to the author.

Is there documentation for it?

The Activity Module: Committee Manager has no instructions to install, but it links to the documentation in Moodle Docs which is great and clear. It clearly explains all the basic functions.

The README file is empty.

There is no link to a forum post discussing the plugin.

Is it easy for the teacher/admin to use?

Setting up this tool is very straight forward. You allocate the members to their various levels, and then just add files, events and plan dates as required. The interface is nice and simple to use, as show by the events image below.

 

Committee Events

Is it easy for the learner/student to use?

As this is primarily for admin, students dont really have a different experience as other users it just depends on the internal roles in the module.

I do like the PDF export on some pages, which is handy.

Does it do what it promises?

This is no normal Moodle 2.0 plugin. It provides some very specific administrative features which could be found in a standalone product yet fit together well within Moodle. I can see people adopting this for managing teams and discussion groups which need to meet on an ongoing basis especially if they are using Moodle as their staff intranet as well. It can also integrate with the scheduler module, to provide even more functionality.

It would be great to see some help icons added in the next version to provide situational guidance and a forum area linked for discussions.

I like this module, I like it a lot. Nice work.

Stars: 4 out of 5 stars for this block.

 

**Standard Reminder**

These reviews check out the plugin for usability not for security. If you are considering installing any module on your site you should also check that is secure and does not impact the server performance.

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