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Getting Started - Your Moodle Course

student workingBegin by familiarizing yourself with your Moodle Course website. Your course is made up of a combination of learning materials which include links to online:

  • readings
  • resources and
  • individual and group activities.

Just as in a face to face class, no two courses are the same. You may find some similarities between your Moodle websites, however, every course is unique and tailored to the course learning and assessment outcomes, which are reflected in the materials and activities created by each individual lecturer.  Therefore, it is a valuable exercise to explore all of the pages within your course from the start so you don’t miss any important information. Below are some key components that generally make up a Moodle course in the Faculty of Education.

Course Booklet/Outline:
Most courses will have a booklet or course outline, generally placed in the first section near the top of the home page screen. It’s essential that you read through your course booklet at the start of your course.  It provides you with critical information such as key dates (course overview), assignment tasks and criteria (including due dates), required readings, as well as course and School policies.  It also provides information about the School where the course ‘sits’ within the Faculty of Education along with contact details for the School administrator, course director/co-ordinator/administrator, and lecturers. 

Readings:
Every course has a set of required readings that is usually linked to the individual articles online via a Library readings page in Moodle.

It’s a good idea to skim through the readings to get a sense of what you will be required to read in the coming weeks.  Your lecturer will guide you through which readings you are expected to read throughout the course. You may also be provided with additional or recommended readings to supplement your required readings.  Some of these will relate to specific assessment tasks and topics and others will provide further background perspectives to course content.

Learning Materials:
The learning materials provided by your lecturers will vary depending on the course content.  Some courses have material to work through on the Moodle site, or within printed Study guides or online journals; other courses may be structured with more content unfolding in contributions to online discussion forum topics that are led by the lecturer. Generally, the learning materials are displayed in weekly pages or by topics, and usually have links to additional resources, such as powerpoints, pdfs, and/or audio/video podcasts.  Some lecturers choose to present all the learning materials for the course at the start of each semester, while others will have learning materials revealed as you progress through the semester.

Online Activities: 
You will be expected to participate in online activities to consolidate your learning and engage with your classmates and lecturers.  Discussion forums are a significant feature in most online and blended courses, through which you have the opportunity to discuss with your peers specific topics or concepts of learning in academic manner.  An online discussion enables you to take time to reflect on other students' messages before contributing your own posting to the discussion.  Emphasis should be on the quality of your post, rather than the quantity.  Some discussion forums will be linked to assessment tasks and you should look for specific information from your course lecturer about length, nature and content of discussion forum postings within each course.  

On-Campus Days:
If you are taking a 'Flexi' or block course there may be full or half day/s on campus incuded in the programme. These days are critical and are designed to provide face-to-face information opportunities, activities and community-building which are so important in supporting you in your learning. Not all courses have on campus days, but for the courses that do, your attendance is essential.

It’s important to remember that every Moodle course will be different, depending on your lecturer, your cohort of students and the course aims and intended outcomes. If you have any questions regarding your Moodle course do not hesitate to ask your lecturer or other students in the class.  You’ll often find other students are in the same boat as you, and are keen to share information and their online experiences with others.   

Last modified: Monday, 9 December 2013, 11:59 AM