Moodle 3.8 is here with some exciting new features! More information will be added to the Moodle FAQ page and the Moodle training course in the next few weeks, in the meantime here is a list of new features:
New Forum Grading: in the past using the Forum Rating feature you could grade forums, but searching for students posts and then grading them took some effort. Now by using the new streamlined “Whole Forum Grading” feature which can be enabled from the forum settings page, you will be able to access all the students in one location see their posts and quickly enter a grade.
Workshop: The Workshop activity has been enabled with Moodle 3.8. This activity allows you to create assignments. Students will submit digital content such as a word, Gdoc or PDF file. Then they will give and receive peer assessment for and from their classmates. The instructor can set up multi-criteria assessments the students will use in their reviews. Assessments can be anonymous. Students using the Workshop will receive 2 grades, one for their assignment and one for the quality of their assessments.
H5P: H5P is an open source project that can be used to create interactive and engaging content. In Moodle’s Atto editor (the onscreen text editor) you will now see an H5P button. The button will allow you to easily embed content that was created on the H5P.org website. Some examples of content that can now be embedded in Moodle are: Slide shows, Photos with hotspots, quizzes, flashcards, word searches, memory games, virtual tours, interactive videos and much more. H5P will enable you to create online interactive content that will engage the student. One caveat to this content is that while many of these activities will test student knowledge, these cannot be used for assessment. This may change with future Moodle development but for now please only view H5P as a way to enhance your lessons.
Analytics: This is a new feature that is now also turned on. It will send the Teacher an e-mail if a there is a need to alert them based on student data. There are three models that will trip these emails: students who have not yet accessed the course, students who have not accessed the course recently and students at risk of dropping out. These models use student data to either warn or predict student behavior. If you find these emails distracting, you can turn off notifications for them by clicking on the arrow next to your profile image in the top right corner of Moodle, then going to Preferences, then Notification Preferences. Find the listing for “Insights generated by prediction models” under the system section and change all the setting for that listing to off. IS will be disabling the notifications for managers and non-editing teachers so in the future only participants in a course with the role of teacher will receive these messages.
We would encourage you to give this tool some time. Moodle has designed these using sophisticated machine-learning algorithms. The models will continue to grow and become more accurate as you use them. Following the link in the email will take you to a report that list all the students who were at risk. You can view the data that tripped the message, send the student a message and you can use the “accept”, “ignore” and “not applicable” buttons to help the analytics algorithm learn.
Please feel free to play with these new features on your own and contact the Helpdesk with any questions you may have. We will update the available training materials within the next few weeks. Thank you for your patience!