Sunday, February 19, 2017

2017 February 17~19 | 2017 MoodleMoot Japan | Workshop, Presentations and Conference Organizer

I attended the 9th MoodleMoot Japan in Tochigi Prefecture held at Jichii Medical University in Utsunomiya City. During the conference, I gave a workshop on LTI and participated in two group presentations. One of the presentations was on Intercultural Exchange with Moodle and the other was on activity and course sharing with LTI and Moodle. In the final day of the presentation, I was the MC for the Best Innovations of 2016 and also received myself an Honorable Mention for an innovation I made using JavaScript and the Moodle Database module. Overall, the conference was a success and I will continue to serve as a member of the executive committee in the R&D division.



LTI Configuration Workshop
Duration : 90-100 mins + 10-15 mins Q&A
Abstract :

In the past, Moodle sites were connected using MNet (Moodle Networking) which served as a Single Sign-On authentication method. While this grants access to remote Moodle sites for collaborative learning, the activities occur in separate spaces. Now there is LTI, or Learning Tools Interoperability, which is a standard proposed by the IMS Global Consortium for the purpose of connecting learning systems together. Not only do sites allow login access remotely, but a more fine-grained control is allowed making it possible to share even a single activity for the purposes of collaboration. The benefits include better security and even publishing of grades to the remote sites. Additionally, the protocol is platform independent which allows for other LMS such as Blackboard or edX to connect and share. In this workshop, participants will get hands-on experience configuring LTI from both a consumer side and an provider side. Basic administrative knowledge of Moodle is a prerequisite.


Intercultural Exchange with Moodle
Type : Presentation (40 mins)
Language : English
Abstract :

Students in English as a foreign language classrooms often have few opportunities to physically interact with other users of English. Virtual Exchange (VE) gives them virtual mobility, enabling them to participate in a global community. In this presentation the authors introduce a large scale VE which has had over 3000 students from 5 countries using Moodle as the platform. Students interact online in English as a lingua franca. Exchanges are carried out over 8 week periods. Outcomes from the project, sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Education, will be outlined using data gained from questionnaires, text analysis and student feedback. The importance and learning of inter-cultural communication to participants should be obvious but pre- and post-questionnaires carried out to gauge changes in students’ cultural sensitivity shed more light on this. This paper will report on the outcomes of those surveys too. Details of how this method of VE could bring it into mainstream, ensuring VE can become a part of any English communication class throughout the world if the teacher so wishes, will be outlined in addition to problems that can eventuate and ideas for incorporating VE into classroom practice.

From Activity Sharing to Course Sharing through Moodle LTI
Type : Presentation (40 mins)
Language : English
Abstract :

For the past 3 years, we have worked on connecting Moodle sites together to enable student collaboration effectively breaking down the borders between classrooms across Japan. The most recent technology for connecting these sites, Moodle Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) has made it possible to not only connect the sites to perform shared activities, but to also allow assessment and evaluation scores to be passed back to the sources. This opens up new possibilities for inter-university collaboration. In this presentation, our challenge of moving from single activity sharing to full course sharing using Moodle LTI will be discussed in details. We conducted two projects in 2016 using test LTI courses: a discussion course and a structured lesson-type course. The former enabled us to have easier controls on grouping and coordinating the discussion than the single activity sharing case. The latter assured us that it was feasible for students to learn a structured and flow-controlled lesson provided through LTI. This implies a possibility of teachers at different schools having their students learn at shared online courses and get necessary grades back to the courses of their own. We believe active exploitation of learning materials like this to be the future of LMSs.


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