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Selling Moodle

10 Oct

moodlecourseI love my Moodle, and find it almost indispensable in my teaching. But the majority of teachers, even those who enthusiastically adopt digital technologies in the classroom, tend to reject Moodle and prefer platforms such as Edmodo. This despite the functionalities available on Moodle, not to be found on other classroom LMSs. Why is this?

Moodle used to be incredibly clunky and decidedly un-sexy. I have heard it said time and time again, that if only it looked and worked like Facebook, it would be OK. I think teachers also experience a pretty steep learning curve with Moodle and find it too Geeky. There is almost too much functionality, too many things to do when setting a course up. It gets a bit overwhelming. All of this makes my job as a Moodle champion in the school an uphill battle. Moodle is a hard sell!

I think Moodle has been getting easier to use, and easier to set up, but I’m not sure this is how teachers with less tech-confidence feel about it. I have heard it said that we shouldn’t even try to get Moodle adopted as it is simply too geeky for teachers, and that no amount of training will help. I feel, however, that it is worth persisting with. Every year more and more teachers are confident enough to take up the challenge, and those that do seem to stick with it.

A good strategy or winning support is to offer online staff training using Moodle. This exposes teachers to the platform from a student point of view, and seems to win converts.

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