Moodle 1.9 E-Learning Course Development

Moodle 1.9 E-Learning Course Development
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Table of Contents
Sample Chapters
  • Updated for Moodle version 1.9
  • Straightforward coverage of installing and using the Moodle system
  • Working with Moodle features in all learning environments
  • A unique course-based approach focuses your attention on designing well-structured, interactive, and successful courses
  • Configure site settings, set up the front page, create user accounts, and create courses

Book Details

Language : English
Paperback : 384 pages [ 235mm x 191mm ]
Release Date : June 2008
ISBN : 1847193536
ISBN 13 : 9781847193537
Author(s) : William Rice
Topics and Technologies : All Books, Other, e-Learning, Moodle, Open Source

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Installing and Configuring Moodle
Chapter 3: Configuring Your Site
Chapter 4: Creating Categories and Courses
Chapter 5: Adding Static Course Material
Chapter 6: Adding Interactive Course Material
Chapter 7: Adding Social Course Material
Chapter 8: Welcoming Your Students
Chapter 9: Features for Teachers
Chapter 10: Extending and Administering Moodle
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
    • Step 1—Learn about the Moodle Experience (Chapter 1)
    • Step 2—Install and Configure Moodle (Chapter 2)
    • Step 3—Create the Framework for Your Learning Site (Chapter 3)
    • Step 4—Add Basic Course Material (Chapter 4)
    • Step 5—Make Your Courses Interactive (Chapter 5)
    • Step 6—Make Your Course Social (Chapter 6)
    • Step 7—Create a Welcome for New and Existing Students (Chapter 7)
    • Step 8—Use Teacher's Tools to Deliver and Administer Courses (Chapter 8)
    • Step 9—Extend Moodle (Chapter 9)
  • The Moodle Philosophy
  • The Moodle Experience
    • The Moodle Front Page
      • Arriving at the Site
      • Anonymous, Guest, and Registered Access
      • The Main Menu
      • Blocks
      • Site Description
      • Available Courses
    • Inside a Course
      • Breadcrumbs
      • Blocks
      • Topics
      • Join a Discussion
      • Complete a Workshop
      • Assessing Other Students' Work
    • Editing Mode
      • Normal Versus Editing Mode
      • The Editing Icon
      • The Delete Icon
      • The Hidden/Shown Icons
      • The Group Icons
    • Resources and Activities
      • Adding Resources and Activities
    • The Administration Block
    • And Much More
  • The Moodle Architecture
    • The Moodle Data Directory
    • The Moodle Database
  • Summary
  • Chapter 2: Installing and Configuring Moodle
    • Installing Moodle
      • Installation Step 1—The Web Server
        • How Much Hosting Service Do You Need?
        • What You Should Do Now
      • Installation Step 2—Subdomain or Subdirectory?
        • What You Should Do Now
      • Installation Step 3—Getting and Unpacking Moodle
        • Which Version?
        • The Quick Way—Upload and Unzip
        • The Long Way—Decompress the Zip File Locally and Upload Files
        • What You Should Do Now
      • Installation Step 4—The Moodle Data Directory
        • What You Should Do Now
      • Installation Step 5—Creating the Moodle Database and User
        • Creating the Database
        • Creating the Database User
        • What You Should Do Now
      • Installation Step 6—The Installer Script
        • Configuration Settings and config.php
        • Database Tables
        • Step 6a—Run install.php
        • Step 6b—Checking PHP Settings
        • Step 6c—Specify the Web Address and Directories
        • Step 6d—Specify Database Settings
        • Step 6e—Database Tables Created by install.php
        • What You Should Do Now
    • Summary
  • Chapter 3: Configuring Your Site
    • Go Ahead, Experiment!
    • The Site Administration Menu
      • Accessing the Site Administration Menu
    • Authentication
      • Authenticating Against an External Database or Server
      • Manual Accounts and No Login Methods
    • Enrolment Choices
      • Internal Enrolment
        • Flat File
        • IMS Enterprise File
        • LDAP
        • External Database
        • PayPal
        • Moodle Networking
    • Language
      • Language Files
      • Language Settings
        • Default Language and Display Language Menu
        • Languages on Language Menu and Cache Language Menu
        • Sitewide Locale
        • Excel Encoding
        • Offering Courses in Multiple Languages
        • Installing Additional Languages
      • Security Settings
        • Open to Google
        • Login Settings
      • Filters
        • Auto-Linking Filters
        • Math Filters
        • Email Protection Filter
        • Multimedia Plug-Ins
        • Multi-Language Content
        • Word Censorship
        • Tidy
    • Configuring the Front Page
      • How to Use this Section
      • Front Page Settings Page
        • Full Site Name
        • Short Name for Site
        • Front Page Description
    • Backup
    • Set Up the Cron Job
    • Summary
  • Chapter 4: Creating Categories and Courses
    • Using Course Categories and the User Experience
      • Creating Course Categories
      • Organizing Course Categories
      • Putting a Course into Several Categories
    • Creating Courses
      • The Course Settings Page
        • Category
        • Full Name and Short Name
        • Course ID Number
        • Summary
        • Format
        • Number of Weeks/Topics
        • Course Start Date
        • Hidden Sections
        • News Items to Show
        • Show Grades and Show Activity Reports
        • Maximum Upload Size
        • Is This a Metacourse?
        • Enrolment Plug-Ins
        • Default Role
        • Course Enrolable
        • Enrolment Duration
        • Enrolment Expiry Notification
        • Groups
        • Availability
        • Enrolment Key
        • Guest Access
        • Cost
        • Force Language
        • Roles (Words for Teacher and Student)
    • Manually Enrolling Teachers and Students
    • Blocks
      • The Standard Blocks
        • Activities
        • Administration
        • Blog Menu
        • Blog Tags
        • Calendar
        • Course/Site Description
        • Courses Categories
        • HTML
        • Latest News
        • Login
        • Main Menu
        • Mentees
        • Messages
        • Network Server
        • Online Users
        • People
        • Quiz Results
        • Random Glossary Entry
        • Recent Activity
        • Remote RSS Feeds
        • Search Forums
        • Section Links
        • Upcoming Events
    • Summary
  • Chapter 5: Adding Static Course Material
    • What Kinds of Static Course Material Can Be Added?
      • The Resource Summary
    • Files
      • Why Upload Files?
      • File Types
      • Linking to Uploaded Files
      • When to Use Uploaded Files
    • Text Page
      • Choosing a Format for a Text Page
        • Moodle Auto-Format—for Quick, Limited Formatting
        • HTML Format—for HTML Pages Composed Offline
        • Plain Text Format—for Program Listings
        • Markdown Format—Intuitive, Fast Formatting
      • Window Settings
        • When to Open Pages in a New Window
    • Web Page
      • Advantages of Using HTML View When Editing Web Pages
      • Composing in an HTML Editor and Uploading to Moodle
      • Learn More about HTML
    • Link
      • When to Use a Link Versus a Web Page
    • Directory
      • Why Use a Directory?
    • Label
    • Adding Multimedia (Audio and Video)
      • Embedding Multimedia
        • Allowing Non-Trusted Users to Embed Items
      • Uploading and Linking to Multimedia Files
        • Workaround for Uploading Large Files
    • Summary
  • Chapter 6: Adding Interactive Course Material
    • Assignments
      • Types of Assignments
        • Upload a Single File
        • Advanced Uploading of Files
        • Online Text
        • Offline Activity
      • Creating an Assignment
      • Printer-Friendly Directions
      • Make It Clear That Assignments Are Mandatory
    • Lesson
      • What Is a Lesson?
      • Lesson Settings
        • General Settings
        • Grade Options
        • Flow Control
        • Lesson Formatting
        • Access Control
        • Pop-Up to File or Web Page
        • Other Lesson Settings
      • Adding the First Question Page
        • Importing Questions
        • Importing PowerPoint
        • Add a Branch Table
        • Add a Question Page
      • Creating the Question Pages
        • Page Title
        • Page Contents
        • Answers
        • Responses
        • Jumps
        • Create Pages and Then Assign Jumps
        • The Flow of Pages
        • Question Pages without Questions
      • Editing the Lesson
        • Collapsed and Expanded
        • Rearranging Pages
        • Editing Pages
        • Adding Pages
      • Branch Tables
    • Quizzes
      • Quiz Settings
        • General
        • Timing
        • Display
        • Attempts
        • Grades
        • Students May Review
        • Security
        • Common Module Settings
        • Overall Feedback
      • Editing a Quiz
        • Create and Edit Question Categories
        • Create and Manage Questions
        • Feedback for a Numeric Question
        • Assemble the Quiz
        • Preventing Glossary Auto-Linking in Quiz Questions
        • Preventing an Open-Book Quiz
    • Survey
      • Creating a Survey
      • Survey Types
        • COLLES
        • ATTLS
        • Critical Incidents
      • When to Use the Different Types of Surveys
    • Choices
      • Student's Point of View
      • Teacher's Point of View
        • Number of Choices
        • Limit
        • Time Limit
        • Publish Results
        • Privacy
        • Allow Students to Change Their Minds
    • Summary
  • Chapter 7: Adding Social Course Material
    • Chat
      • The Editing Chat Page
        • Name
        • Introduction Text
        • Next Chat Time and Repeat Sessions
        • Save Past Sessions and Everyone Can View Past Sessions
        • Chat Security
    • Forum
      • Discussion Equals Topic
      • Using a Forum to Send Mass Emails
      • Multiple Forums
      • Forum Settings
        • General Settings
        • Grade Settings
        • Post Threshold For Blocking Settings
    • Glossary
      • Adding Glossary Entries
      • Global Versus Local Glossary
      • Main and Secondary Glossaries
      • Ratings and Comments
    • Wiki
      • Using Wiki Type and Group Mode to Determine Who Can Edit a Wiki
      • Wiki Markup Versus HTML Mode
      • Enabling the Uploading of Binary Files
      • When to Use CamelCase Linking
      • Student Admin Options
      • Page Name
      • Choose Initial Page
        • Create a Text File for the Wiki's Home Page
        • If Desired, Create Additional Text Files for Additional Starting Pages
        • Upload Text Files to the Course
        • Create the Wiki
        • While Creating the Wiki, Select the Text Files for the Initial Pages
        • Test the Wiki As a Student
    • Workshop
      • Workshop Strategies
        • Peer Assessment of Assignments
        • Timing of Submissions and Assessments
      • Creating a Workshop
      • Workshop Fields
        • Title and Description
        • Grade for Assessments and Grade for Submission
        • Grading Strategy
        • Number of Comments, Assessment Elements, Grade Bands, Criterion Statements, or Categories in Rubric
        • Allow Resubmissions
        • Number of Assessments of Examples from Teacher
        • Comparison of Assessments
        • Number of Assessments of Student Submissions
        • Weight for Teacher Assessments
        • Over Allocation
        • Self Assessment
        • Assessments Must Be Agreed
        • Hide Grades Before Agreement
        • League Table of Submitted Work
        • Hide Names from Students
        • Use Password and Password
        • Maximum Size
        • Start and End of Submissions/Assessments
        • Release Teacher Grades
        • Group Mode
        • Visible
    • Summary
  • Chapter 8: Welcoming Your Students
    • First Impression—Login Page, Front Page, or Your Page?
    • Customizing the Login Page
    • Customizing the Front Page
      • Front Page Blocks
        • Activities
        • Site Administration Menu
        • Calendar
        • Front Page Description
        • Courses
        • Latest News
        • Login
        • Main Menu
        • Online Users
        • People
        • Recent Activity
        • Search Forums
        • Upcoming Events
    • Combining Anonymous, Guest, and Registered Access
      • Security Options Available to You
    • Look and Feel
      • Themes—Customize Colors and Styles
      • Custom Logo
      • Custom Header and Footer
        • Customizing the Header
        • Customizing the Footer
      • Custom Icons
      • Custom Strings
    • Summary
  • Chapter 9: Features for Teachers
    • Reports and Logs
      • The Reports Page
      • Viewing Logs
      • Viewing Activity Reports
      • Site Statistics
        • To Enable Site Statistics
    • Using Scales for Feedback, Rating, and Grading
      • Applying a Scale to an Activity
      • Establishing Custom Scales
    • Grades
      • Viewing Grades
      • Categorizing Grades
      • Creating and Viewing Categories
      • Using Extra Credit
      • Grading on a Curve
      • When to Use Curve and When to Use Weight
      • Compensate for a Difficult or Easy Category by Weighting Grades
        • Weight
        • Hide Ungraded Activities
        • Dropping the Lowest Scores in a Category
        • Giving Bonus Points
      • Points, Percents, and Letter Grades
    • The Teacher Forum
    • Roles
    • Summary
  • Chapter 10: Extending and Administering Moodle
    • Add-On Modules
      • Getting Modules
      • Installing Modules
      • Managing Modules
      • Backing Up, Restoring, and Duplicating Courses
      • What Gets Backed Up?
      • Automated Backup of Your Site
        • Choosing a Backup Location
      • Backing Up the Database
      • Using phpMyAdmin to Back Up the Database
      • Backing Up the Moodle Directories
      • Create a Disaster Recovery Plan
      • Duplicate a Course with Import
      • Especially for Teachers—Backing Up and Restoring an Individual Course
        • To Back Up a course
        • To Restore a Course
      • Resetting Courses, and Continual Improvement
    • Roles
      • Terminology
        • Role
        • Context
      • Moodle's Built-In Roles
      • Assigning a Role
        • To Assign a Role to Someone at the Site Level
        • To Assign a Role to Someone Within a Course Category
        • To Assign a Role to Someone Within a Course (That Is, Enroll a Student or Assign a Teacher)
      • Editing a Role's Capabilities
        • To Edit a Role's Capabilities
      • Recommendations for Working with Roles
    • Summary

William Rice

William Rice is an e-learning professional who lives, works, and plays in New York City. He is the author of books on Moodle, Blackboard, Magento, and software training. He especially enjoys building e-learning solutions for small and mid-sized businesses. His greatest professional satisfaction is when one of his courses enables students to do something that makes their work easier and more productive.

His indoor hobbies include writing books and spending way too much time reading His outdoor hobbies include practicing archery within sight of JFK Airport, and trying to keep up with his sons on the playground.

William is fascinated by the relationship between technology and society: how we create our tools, and how our tools in turn shape us. He is married to an incredible woman who encourages his writing pursuits, and has two amazing sons.

You can reach William through his website at

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- 6 submitted: last submission 29 Apr 2014

Errata type: Update | Page number: 4 SHOULD BE
This happened because previously we used the first format for code and other download links. Now we have changed to the second format. This applies for page no. 6 as well, where you will again find the old link.


Errata type: Typo | Page number: 14

line 4
(like and LDAP server)
should be:
(like an LDAP server)


Errata type: Typo | Page number: 82

"Tipos de Plantaras" should be "Tipos de Plantas". 1st paragraph, 6th line.


Errata type: Typo | Page number: 88

"... is an extract grom the official Apache 2 documentation" should be " an extract from the official Apache 2 documentation" (aprox. in the middle of the page).


Errata type: Technical | Page number: 119

When Show Grades and/or Show Activity Reports is selected in the course settings, it is only to show the grades and/or activity reports of each student - they cannot see other students' grades or activity reports.


Errata type: Technical | Page number: 120

It is NOT true that if you enrol a student in a metacourse, he/she is enrolled in each child course. It only works that by enrolling in a child course, the student is then enrolled in the metacourse.


Sample chapters

You can view our sample chapters and prefaces of this title on PacktLib or download sample chapters in PDF format.

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What you will learn from this book

Once you read this book, you will:

Understand what Moodle can do, how it compares to other e-learning packages, and how it can support your teaching strategies

  • Install the Moodle software on your own computer or a server, and understand your way around it
  • Know how to create different kinds of courses. Moodle can support courses where the group works through the classes with a shared schedule, or where individual students work through at their own pace, or courses where students are free to explore the different topics in their own time. This book will show you how.
  • Understand all of Moodle's learning features. Moodle provides features for managing course content, interactive resources, and social activities such as forums and wikis. This book explains what each of these features are, how they work, and most importantly how and when to use them effectively.
  • Manage students – so that you can ensure that the right students are going to the right classes; allow students to enrol themselves, or invite students to join a course. You can even set up commercial courses where students pay to sign

The book is fully revised and updated to take advantage of Moodle version 1.9. Changes and enhancements include:

Extensive coverage of the new Moodle 1.9 configuration facilities
Moodle 1.9 has a new approach to configuration. Instead of a single configuration page, configuration options are spread throughout Moodle. In a new Configuration chapter, William walks through both new and familiar settings, helping you to work with the new and improved Moodle.

Covers new features - including mentees and messages
The newest version of Moodle enables you to assign a mentor to a student. The mentor can see the student's activity in the system, and the student's grades. The book covers the use of the Mentee block, which makes this possible.

Messages allow students and teachers to send private messages to one another from within Moodle, without sharing email addresses. This new edition of Moodle E-Learning Course Development documents each of these new blocks, and shows how to use them effectively in your online teaching.

Understand, use, and customize roles
Moodle now supports powerful user management with roles and privileges. This means you have much more control over how users can work with your courses, but of course it also adds some complexity. This new edition provides a clear, straightforward tutorial to using roles.

Monitor how learners interact with your site using site stats
The book covers Moodle's new statistics facility, and how to use it to analyse how students are using and interacting with your courses.

Multimedia course content
Embed sound, video, and other multimedia into your courses. Handle security and safety issues raised by embedded content.

More detail and discussion throughout the book
The new edition contains expanded discussion throughout the book: clearer explanations, additional best-practices and tips, and deeper coverage of every important feature. Popular modules such as wikis, file uploads, quizzes, and lessons have extensive new discussion.

In Detail

This unique book gives you more than just a guide to the  Moodle software; it uses Moodle as a route to better teaching, more motivated students, and more successful courses. Moodle is the leading Open Source learning management system. Using Moodle, teachers can easily construct richly textured web based courses.  A course can consist of a number of lessons, with each lesson including reading materials; activities such as quizzes, tests, surveys, and projects; and social elements that encourage interaction and group work between students.Moodle E-Learning Course Development shows you how to use Moodle as a tool to enhance your teaching. It will help you analyse your students' requirements, and come to an understanding of what Moodle can do for them. After that you'll see how to use every feature of Moodle to meet your course goals.

The social constructionist learning philosophy is at the heart of Moodle: we all "construct" knowledge through interation with one another and with learning materials in a social way. Moodle E-Learning Course Develelopment will show you how to add static learning material, interactive activities, and social features to your courses so that students reach their learning potential. Whether you want to support traditional class teaching or lecturing, or provide complete online and distance learning courses, this book will prove a powerful resource throughout your use of Moodle.

A complete guide to successful learning using Moodle, focused on course development and delivery and using the best educational practices. Moodle is relatively easy to install and use, but the real challenge is to develop a learning process that leverages its power and maps effectively onto the content established learning situation. This book guides you through meeting that challenge.


William Rice is an experienced trainer and expert on learning and teaching practices. This experience and expertise forms the foundation of his approach: What do we want to teach? How would this best translate into a course? How best can Moodle support these course objectives?

Of course, the book contains everything you'd expect from an introduction to Moodle: clear step-by-step instructions, plenty of screenshots, explanations and guides through the many features and options that you have to choose from. Throughout the book, William develops an example course. He uses this example to explore the sort of decisions, design considerations, and thought that goes into developing a successful course.

Who this book is for

This book is for anyone who wants to get the best from Moodle. Beginners will get a thorough guide to how the software works, with great ideas for getting off to a good start with their first course. More experienced Moodlers will find powerful insights into developing more successful and educational courses.

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