Moodle 2 Module Reviews

There are already quite a few plugins available in the Moodle community plugins database, so I have started to install and review the plugins. The review will be an overall usability review and not at all focused on the technical side.

This is the list of plugins which I have reviewed so far:

Activity Modules

Remote Learner Adobe Connect Pro Module
This module enables the teacher to create and manage sessions for the Adobe Connect Pro Virtual Classroom system from within Moodle 2.0.

Certificate
This module enables the student to download a a course certificate when they have completed the requirements.

Checklist
This module enables the teacher/trainer to monitor and track the students progress as they tick off the different items on a course specific todo list.

Committee Manager
This module a nice intuitive interface for managing the workings of a committee members, events, files and meetings agendas.

DocBook
This module enables a teacher take a technical manual or book written in the DocBook format and present it within Moodle for consumption

BigBlueButton.
This activity enables easy integration between Moodle 2.0 and the virtual conferencing system BigBlueButton.

ForumNG
This is a Moodle activity plugin which is an alternative option to the standard Forums within Moodle.

Group Self-Selection
This activity allows students to select the group that they want to be members of.

OU wiki
This is a Moodle activity plugin which is an alternative wiki option within Moodle. It has been designed specifically with teaching and learning in mind.

OpenMeetings integration
This activity enables integration between Moodle 2.0 and the open source OpenMeetings virtual classroom system.

Questionnaire
This module provides an easy way of creating your own surveys using a range of question types.

Scheduler
In short, this activity enables you to plan and schedule one-to-one appointments with participants in the course. The teacher specifies time periods in which they are available for the appointments and how long each appointment can be. Then the students can select one of the time slots and book it

Tutorship
A schedule tutoring sessions module for Moodle, where teachers and students can make appointments for tutoring interviews from a timetable view.

WizIQ
This activity enables a comprehensive integration between the web conferencing platform WizIQ and Moodle.

Blocks

Ajax Marking Block
Currently when a teacher wants to get a complete list of all work to be marked, there is no way to get a complete list of every submission without going into the courses. This block solves that issue. When you place this block on the front page, the teacher is then shown all of the unmarked work that has been submitted by students in their courses.

Course Contents
The Course Contents Block provides an alternative in-course navigation for teachers and students, displaying the topic names in a easy to use menu.

Course Menu Block
The Course Menu Block provides an alternative in-course navigation for teachers and students, which increase the functionality of the overall navigation.

Configurable Reports

This block enables the user to create custom reports for viewing in Moodle and for downloading into Excel.

Drag and drop file upload Block
The Drag and drop file upload for Moodle 2.0 provides a great time saving and easy way to upload files into a Moodle 2 course.

Exabis E-Portfolio
This block provides a nice and simple E-Portfolio option for students within Moodle.

Jump To Menu
The Jump To Menu block is a mechanism to add the ‘jump to’ menu functionality within Moodle 2.0, similar to that used by Moodle 1.x

Lesson Objectives
The Lesson Objectives block provides a way of creating learning objectives aligned to the lesson timetable. Each one then appears in the block and can be ticked off by the teacher.

Progress Bar
The Progress Bar provides a colour coded progress visual for students to help them manage their time while completing a course.

Simple Clock
The Simple Clock block shows the server time, and the users times on a block on the course page.

Theme Switcher Block for Moodle 2.0
Allow users to change their favorite theme without having to go to profile page

User Info Block
The user info block provides an easy way of navigating around some key parts of Moodle 2 for the user.

User Contact Block
This block allows students to privately email the teacher of their course.

Unanswered Discussions
This block displays a list of unanswered discussions from the course forums.

Course Format

Slides
The format loads all of the topic into slides which you can then navigate freely through without reloading the page again, as you would have to if you used topics and focused on one of them.

OneTopic
The OneTopic course format presents the existing topics from a topics format course one at a time.. The topic names are shown above the topic content in tabs and each topic can be showed one at a time by clicking on the correct tab. It also keeps the focus on that one topic even when going in and out of resource/activities in the course.

Collapsed Topics
The Collapsed Topics course format takes the existing topics from a topics format course, and presents them in a more compact view. The topics names are shown in a list and each topic can be toggled “open” or in its default closed or hidden state.

Integration

Crot 2.0
This plagiarism plugin searches the web and the moodle site for similar content.

Other

Custom SQL queries
This admin report enables users to create reports from SQL and view the results on the webpage and export the results to spreadsheet.

Unique Logins Authentication
This plugin blocks multiple sessions for one user account.

Respondus Web Services
The integration for Respondus and Moodle 2 is a web service plugin which enables the tool talk directly to Moodle 2.

Local

LTI Provider
It enables Moodle to provide access to an activity or a full course from other systems (either Moodle 2.2+ sites using the External Tool capability, or Sakai and other LTI compliant systems which can connect to LTI tools/providers)

Resource Type

Book Module
This resource provides an easy way to create multi-page resources with a book-like format and navigation.

Standard Slideshow for Moodle 2.0
This excellent resource type provides a way to create a slide show presentation within Moodle.

Question Types

Drag and Drop Marker
This question type enables the student to answer the question by placing a marker or multiple markers onto the image that the question is using.

 

 

As there are many aspects of looking at modules I will be focusing on these few questions:

  • Is it simple to install?
  • Is there documentation for it?
  • Does it do what it promises?
  • Is it easy for the teacher/admin to use?
  • Is it easy for the learner/student to use?

The important technical questions that I wont be asking include:

  • Is it well coded and secure?
  • Will it impact on server performance?
  • Does it backup/restore properly?

I will leave these for someone else to tackle, but if you are considering installing a module please look at those issues as well as usability.

If you find any inaccuracies or mistakes in the reviews, please let me know!

10 Responses to Moodle 2 Module Reviews

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  2. scott charlson says:

    Where do I find the cool tag cloud block that you are using on your site? Thanks

  3. admin says:

    HI Scott,

    The plugin i use is http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wp-cumulus/

    Can also be used in other non WP sites using :

    http://www.roytanck.com/2008/05/19/how-to-repurpose-my-tag-cloud-flash-movie/

    Hope that helps.

    Gav

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  7. Tim Hunt says:

    I’m still waiting to see what you have to say about ForumNG, OU wiki, OU blog and Subpage.

    • ghenrick says:

      Hi Tim,

      Actually I had partially finished review on ForumNG, so will finish now, and line the others up for coming week along with a multi-part review of ELIS for Moodle 2 that I am starting.

      Gav.

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