Overview of technical and accessibility features of the Learning Management System
The learning management system powered by MOODLE has been upgraded
to the latest version 3.11.4 with additional plugins to enhance the
various aspects of the teaching learning process. We enlist some of
the key features of this update here. The important improvements and
bug fixes in this version can be found here.
The present version of MOODLE is run from a tower server with better configuration than the earlier one and hence the response time is going to be better. We have also configured simple hardware RAID to ensure higher data security. This offers very good read and write speed for fast access.
We have taken more efforts to secure the portal without any additional cost by using the open source SSL certificate via certbot and letsecrypt.org.
We are taking remote backup of the complete software and all the faculty are advised to take backups of their completed courses so that we can recover from any unfortunate data loss. The backed up courses can be reused by the teacher in subsequent semesters or at any other MOODLE installations.
We have enable regular automatic updates of some of the plugins to keep the software upto date to remove any kind of bugs or shortcomings in the coding and to provide latest available features for the CUTN fraternity.
Salient features within MOODLE
The following are some of the features that are widely used by most of our faculty and they come as default functionalities of the MOODLE platform.
Mathjax text filter
Safe Exam Browser
We have additionally use the following plugins to provide additional functionalities within MOODLE so that teachers and students can benefit from them.
This plugin is used to keep track of student’s attendance in a transparent way. This module has a functionality that a teacher can create multiple sessions and these sessions are automatically updated in the calendar. When the calendar is updated with these sessions, students dashboard has a timeline which reminds them about upcoming classes.
BigBlueButton is an alternative to web conferencing systems like Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, ZOOM, CISCO Webex etc., It is an open source web conferencing system for online learning. BigBlueButton supports real-time sharing of slides (including whiteboard), audio, video, chat, emojis, breakout rooms, and screen. It also record all content for later playback. Although we do not have a dedicated server for running BigBlueButton, we use the free server to host meetings.
This module gets input from quiz, glossary or questions and plays some games. The available games are hangman, crossword, cryptex, millionaire, sudoku, Snakes and Ladders etc.,
GeoGebra is a free and multi-platform dynamic mathematics software for all levels of education that joins geometry, algebra, tables, graphing, statistics and calculus in one easy-to-use package. This module allow the incorporation of GeoGebra activities in some MOODLE course.
We can embed GeoGebra activities within courses.
We can make a quiz activity with GeoGebra and store the score, data, duration and construction of each of the attempts by students.
Students can also save and continue later from where they left of.
H5P is an open source tool for education that makes it easy to create interactive content by providing a range of content types like interactive video, course presentation with interactive slides, arithmetic quizzes, charts, flashcards etc.,
This module is very helpful for administrators and teachers to conduct various surveys among the students for various kinds of purposes. Additionally this gives a nice analysis of the questionnaire responses.
All-or-Nothing question type
This is an additional question type that allows all the teachers to set objective questions that are similar to CSIR-UGC-NET examination.
Plugins to improve administrative efficiency
Apart from the above learning centred plugins, we use the following plugins for various uses that improves the overall quality of the learning management system.
Learning Analytics Log
We also provide need based available services within the scope of MOODLE for all the users at Central University of Tamil Nadu, Thiruvarur 610 005.
We are thankful to the open source community for making this possible for several educational institutes like ours across the globe.