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In this course, author Chris Mattia helps educators create online courses that complement classroom-based instruction and foster student interaction using the free learning management system Moodle. The course details the basics of setting up a test environment, disseminating course information, creating forums, and assessing student progress. Tutorials on building course materials with Moodle's built-in HTML editor, preparing and posting various types of media, uploading assignments, and evaluating tests automatically are also included.
Now that we have our users created, we need to go ahead and create our test course that we're going to use throughout this title. But if you look down in the lower left-hand corner, you'll notice that the server settings are no longer there. And that's because we are logged in as ourselves. So the first thing we need to do is make sure any time you want to administer the server, go ahead and log out and log back in as the admin user. So go ahead and here we're going to type in admin, and the password is 12345, and hit the Login button.
Now we're going to scroll down in the left-hand side and go to Site administration. And scroll on down again and this time click on Courses and hit the Add/edit courses link. In the Add/edit courses, we're going to simply add a new course. And for the full course name, we're going to go ahead and type in Coral Reef Ecology. And for the short name, I'm going to type in BIOL432. It's the course number for my course here.
Now the Course ID, we're going to go ahead and leave that blank. That's used in many systems where you've got a course ID that is tied directly to your campus information system. And this is a field that is not necessarily required, but it is available for you to use. For the Course summary, I'm going to go ahead right now and type in "A general course on coral reef ecology." Normally, what would be populated in here as the official course description, and we'll show in a later movie where that could be edited at.
But for right now, we'll just put a very generic message right inside of here. And if you wanted to, you could add a little bit of formatting to that, but we're going to scroll on past that. And for the Format, we have a couple of options. And the two most common options that most teachers use for their courses is either a Topics format or a Weekly format. Now the Weekly format is going to start off on a particular day in the term, and it's going to calculate all of the individual weeks of your class, and it will populate in the dates for when that course is being taught.
So in the case of our course, I'm going to go ahead and use the Weekly format for our course. We've got a 15-week semester, so I'm going to go ahead and select down 15. And the Course start date, I'm going to build a course for the spring of 2012, so I'll click the dropdown menu here, and I'll be able to scroll forward in time. I'm going to go down to January, and the first week of the course is going to start on the 23rd of January here, in 2012. And I'm going to scroll on down a little bit further.
I've got Hidden sections are going to be completely invisible. I'm going to take my news items and only have those set to 5. My Gradebook I do want to show. I'm not going to show any activity reports, and I want to make sure that my maximum upload size is 128. On the Windows install, we did some php configurations in order to reset our maximum upload file size, so this is where we're reaping that benefit, so make sure that you've got that set all the way up to 128 there.
Go ahead and scroll on down. We're not going to log guests in. The Groups, we're going to leave those all set to None. Availability, we're going to set this. The course is available to students. Language, we're not going to force right now, and the only edit that I want to make here, Role renaming. These are the roles that Moodle has called out for what the different roles within your course are going to be. And Manager, we're not going to use. Teacher is you. You may want to go ahead and type in Professor here if you are professor at a university and you prefer that over teacher.
But for Non-editing teacher, this is really your teaching assistant, or your TA, as most universities call it. And Student is fine to call that. This is not the actual name of your TA. This is just the name TA is what that role is going to be called within the course. So go ahead and hit Save changes. Don't worry about all of the details of the specifics of those settings that we made just there. We're going to go into those in a little more detail in a later movie, but for now, let's go ahead and get this course set up. Now we want to go ahead and enroll our users. So we're going to come over here and hit the Enroll users button.
There's one at the top and the bottom; it doesn't matter which one you hit. The first thing we want to do is we want to set up our teacher, so hit the dropdown menu at the top and select Teacher as the role. And you want to find your account. In this case, here's my account right here, Chris Mattia. And I'm going to hit the Enroll button, and that adds me as the teacher here. Now we're going to go up to the dropdown menu at the top and we're going to select Student, and we're going to go ahead and enroll all of the other students. We'll enroll Sally Jones, Elvis McNamera, Eugene Sanches, Johnny Smith, and Al Uminium.
To make this all finalized, you need to click the button at the bottom that says Finish enrolling users. A very important thing to do inside of Moodle is anytime you make some setting changes, always look at the bottom of the screen and look for a Save option of some kind because just because you've made a setting change, doesn't mean it actually got saved somewhere. Let's check over our work here. We've got all of our users installed here. We've got ourselves set up as the teacher. You can see our role here. And we've got a bunch of students set up and if we decide that Johnny is actually going to be our TA also, we can even hit the little plus sign right here and we can add an additional role.
We can add him as the TA, and there we go. Now Johnny is not only a student, but he can also be a TA if we want to grant those privileges. If we decide that we don't want Johnny to be our TA, we just hit the little X next to it. Do you want to remove this privilege from him? Yeah, sure, go ahead and remove it, and Johnny is back to being a regular student in the class. Let's go ahead and check this real quick. Go ahead and hit the Home button. We can now see in our Available courses Coral Reef Ecology with us listed as the Teacher. So let's do one final check.
Go ahead and log out of the of the admin account, log back in. This time log in as yourself, so I'll log in as Chris with my password 12345, hit the Login button. And there we go! Our course is set up right there, and we're ready to go. In the next movie, we'll go through a couple of final checks of server administration things and then get on to building our course.
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