Chris Jones and Anne Jelfs recently evaluated a two-week course called Moodling for Beginners which was carried out earlier this year with 80 Associate Lecturers (tutors) from the Open University (OU). The participants were from all faculties and all OU regions and nations. All but one completed the course. There was an 81% response rate to the post-course survey, and 18 tutors were subsequently interviewed. So what did they make of Moodle?
On the negative side there were a number of comments of “clunkiness”, uninspiring visual design and lack of functionality. There was also a large number of suggestions for new functionality. Some of the comments have already been addressed; others will be in our January and subsequent releases.
86% of respondents said that they would use some of the tools in teaching. 68% would use forums, 64% wikis, 55% quizzes and 48% blogs. Given the fact that some of the tools were still under development and admittedly fairly clunky at that stage, these are quite encouraging figures.
When asked to identify the most useful tool(s) the responses were:
Wiki – 52%
Quiz – 42%
Blog – 36%
Poll – 25%
The wiki activity does not appear to have been easy to understand – and participants were using the old Moodle wiki – so if this exercise were held again it might be that the wiki moves up the scale. As our understanding of how best to use these tools in teaching grows it will be interesting to see how these figures change, and how they compare with students’ perceptions.