Moodle 2.0 initial reflections

This semester the Macquarie University School of Education is trialing Moodle 2.0 for a couple of its units. I’m a great believer in Moodle and its potentials, and am looking forward to the promises of Moodle 2.0. However moving from the refined 1.9 to 2.0 has meant starting again in some respects. Here’s what I mean:

  1. There are several annoying bugs. For instance, because of the YUI protocols that are being used, ordered (numbered) lists appear correctly in the WYSIWYG editor but render as unordered (bullet) lists on the final page. See http://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=165759 for a discussion on this.
  2. There are several annoying design features. For example, the Navigation block on the LHS automatically expands out the users’ courses including all of the course resources. This may occasionally be useful but for those who prefer to use the central course area to navigate through materials it is annoying because it pushes the Settings block down the page. Also, the Navigation block can’t be deleted (at least in some themes).
  3. Themes are not fully developed yet. If points 1 & 2 aren’t enough evidence, then consider the fact that in most themes the hidden files in teacher view are not rendered in a different colour to the other files, meaning that when editing mode is switched off there is no way to tell which files a teacher has included in the course.
  4. The file system is inaccessible and not at all user friendly. Any uploaded files are placed in their own folders (why?) within folders relating to the blocks in which they appear. It is unclear how to access the file system from the main page. The file system doesn’t remember user preferences for list rather than icon view. The whole design of the file system will be confusing to average users. Mark Drexler provides a discussion on the file system design which may be of some use ( http://www.markdrechsler.com/?p=234 ) because the Moodle documentation on this is lacking (http://docs.moodle.org/en/File_handling_2.0). Personally I think the way files are handled in Moodle 2.0 is a terrible mistake and they will end up rolling back or people will install plugins to workaround.

About matthewbower

Associate Professor at Macquarie University.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.