On Thursday, July 7 2016 Moodle at UMass Amherst upgraded from Moodle version 2.8 to version 3.0.
Even though this is a "whole number" release, most changes are behind the scenes to improve performance and backend efficiency. Still, there are several new features and improvements to the interface that might make your life a little better!
Here's what to watch for:
Log Out from Anywhere
The new Browser sessions page lists your current browser sessions in Moodle. You can see if you forgot to log off on a different computer and log off, assuring that no one else is using your account. Link to your Browser session page from your Profile page.
For All Users
My home has been renamed Dashboard. It's a great page for students to check due dates and see what's new in their courses. Get there from the Navigation block, or from the User menu.
Link to the IT Support Center from the new Help Menu.
The redesigned Profile page (formerly, My profile) provides more useful information and convenient links. The link to your profile has moved from the Administration block to the User menu.
The new user Preferences page lets you review and edit all your preferences. Link to your preferences from the User menu, or from your Profile page.
New Link to Grades
The new Grades page can be accessed from the User menu from anywhere in Moodle. The page displays grades for all courses students are enrolled in with links to relevant user reports, and for teachers, links to their Gradebooks.
More Easily Reuse Uploaded Files
When adding files, in the File Picker, search Server files to reuse files you already added to Moodle, including files you uploaded to another course.
New Editor Features
Easy Media Embedding from More Sources
New media filters in Moodle allow teachers and students to easily embed media from a variety of sites, including presentations hosted on SlideShare, Office Mix, and Sway; audio from SoundCloud; video from Ted Talks and Office 365 Video (as well as Vimeo and YouTube); and books/stories hosted on Issue.
For Instructors and Course Designers
New Location to Set Up Guest Access
Manage Guest access to your course in Users > Enrollment methods rather than Edit settings.
New Menu for Editing Sections
Use the new Edit dropdown menu at the top of each Section to edit the Section name, add a Section summary, highlight the current Section, or hide a Section. The menu also includes the option to delete an entire Section.
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Management of Group Enrollment
Several useful features have been added for managing group activities:
- Add the new Upload/download groups block to import groups of students from a spreadsheet. (From the Users > Group administration page you can only import Import group names. The new block lets you upload course members in groups). This should be especially helpful for users of team collaboration and peer review tools such as CATME.
- Filter participants on the Enrolled users page by groups and by last access.
Add a course member to multiple groups at the same time from the Enrolled users page.
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- Two new Restrict access conditions, Group and Grouping, let instructors exclude or include members from particular groups or groupings. Among other uses, the new feature allows an activity to be assigned to only a particular group without first adding the group to a grouping.
- For activity types that support group modes, under Common module settings the new Add group/grouping access restriction button opens the Restrict access options for groups.
The Categories & Items page has been renamed Gradebook setup and is now available through a quick link in the Administration block as well as from its tab within the Gradebook.
New Activity Features
- New Quiz question types: Select missing words, Drag and drop into text, Drag and drop into image, Drag and drop markers.
- Retakes of quizzes that pull from random question banks will now always use new questions where possible (this is a behavior change, not a new option).
- Quizzes can now have section headings.
- Questions can be shuffled on different pages.
- Access to a Quiz question can be conditional upon other questions.
- Sort Question banks by creation/edit date.
- Improved print view for quizzes.
- Instructors can add a new discussion topic for all groups in a Forum at the same time.
- Users can subscribe to individual discussion threads.
Ability to duplicate rubric criteria when building a rubric.
Improved Workshop submission report allows teachers to see who has submitted and who has not, and to filter by submission and last modified.
Note: Some features described on docs.moodle.org (for example, blogs, messaging, and self enrollment) are not available on Moodle at UMass Amherst.