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Moodle FAQs

  1. What is Moodle?
  2. How many schools are using Moodle?
  3. When and how are courses created in Moodle?
  4. How are students added to my courses?
  5. Will my Moodle course sites go away after the semester?
  6. How long will my old courses be left on the system?
  7. How do I backup my old Moodle course?

What is Moodle?
Moodle is a web application that allows faculty to post course materials (like documents, discussion boards, assignments, video and audio) online making them available to their students around the clock. In addition, instructors can make use of discussion boards, quizzes, online activities, and other tools available in the system to expand the the walls of a traditional classroom. Moodle can also help you to maintain paperless classroom or meeting.

Moodle provides a flexible environment for all types of learning communities, whether a "regular" course, departmental project or University-wide task force.

FYI for geeks: The acronym "Moodle" stands for Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment.

How many schools are using Moodle?
Clark is one of thousands of campuses that have adopted Moodle as its course management system. As of this writing there are now more than 11,500 Moodle installations in the United States alone. For more information on who uses Moodle or up-to-date statistics on it's use, please see http://moodle.org/stats/.

Among higher education institutions, Clark keeps good company in using Moodle. Other schools who have adopted Moodle include:

  • Brandeis University
  • Carleton College
  • Bard College
  • Colgate College
  • College of the Holy Cross
  • Connecticut College
  • DePauw University
  • Dickinson College
  • Hampshire College
  • Smith College
  • Vassar College
  • Wesleyan University
  • Wheaton College
  • Bucknell University

When and how are courses created in Moodle?
Moodle course containers are created in two ways: manually and automatically. Automatically created course containers are for "regular" courses at Clark, those courses that students register for as part of the regular registration process via CUWeb. When courses are cross-listed, Moodle creates a container for the "master" course. The ATS team manually creates course containers on an "as requested" basis for needs outside of "regular" courses.

How are students added to my Moodle course?
The process of enrolling students in automatically created courses happens several times each day. A process checks Registrar data to see which students are registered for which classes, then registered students are placed in their corresponding Moodle course sites. When courses are cross-listed, Moodle includes all students registered for cross listed sections in the "master" course created. If there are students missing from your Moodle course enrollments, please contact the Academic Technologist assigned to your department so we can verify that there isn't a data problem with your course.

Will my Moodle courses go away after the semester?
No, but starting in January 2013, Academic Technology Services will make "Not available to students" shortly grades are due. Curse instructors will still be able to view course content, but students will not be able to access the course. This is in part to comply with recent copyright case law which specifies that only registered students may have access to materials used under fair use exemptions for the duration of the course.

How long will my Moodle courses remain on the system?
Generally a course remains in Moodle for 8 semesters after its creation.

How do I back up my Moodle courses?

  1. Enter the Moodle course you wish to backup.
  2. Click "Backup" in the Course Administration Block.
  3. With check marks, select the components of the course you wish to backup then click Next.
  4. A second page of all selected components will be displayed, scroll to the bottom of the form and click Next.
  5. A Confirmation page will display and include a field with the name of the backup file: "backup-moodle2-courseinfo.mbz". View the page to verify, scroll to the bottom and click Perform Backup.
  6. You will receive confirmation when the backup is complete. Click Continue to see the available backups for your course. You may download the backup file as an archive or potentially for future use.