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Moodle provides students with a rich environment of information, resources, and activities to enhance what is being taught in the classroom. In Moodle Essential Training for Students, Chris Mattia walks step by step through a typical Moodle course and shows students how to be successful. Chris shows how to post materials to a custom database, participate in a live chat with other students, and even access and complete assignments online.
Perhaps the most common thing that you are going to do inside of your Moodle course is to view various different documents or resources that your instructor has posted for you. All of these documents will appear in the center section of your Moodle course that has all of your content for each different week of the semester or each different unit. All of the items that are listed inside of these areas are going to be listed as links with an icon out to the left-hand side of the link. The icons represent the type of document that you are going to find here. So for instance, in this document we've got Introduction to major tropical ecosystems.
It's a PowerPoint document and the PowerPoint icon is over here to the left. Up here, we've got our course syllabi and a Syllabus is a word document and it's showing the Microsoft Word document icon next to it. To view the document, you can simply click on the link to the document and depending on the browser and operating system that you are using, it will either open the document directly inside of your browser window or it's going to attempt to go ahead and download and save the file to your local hard drive. In this case, I'll go ahead and leave the radio button set to Save File and click OK.
My Syllabus downloads and then I can close my Downloads window, minimize my browser and then go to the location of my hard drive where the document has been downloaded to. In this case, it's been downloaded to my Desktop. I can double-click on that document and the document opens directly in my target application. In this case, Microsoft Word. I can then do any work that I need to with the document. Let me go ahead and close the syllabi and return back to my Moodle course. All types of documents work in this manner. If I scroll down to this first content area, you can see some of the other content types that are listed in here as well. In this case, we have got Required Reading. It's got an icon that looks like a webpage. I'll go ahead and click on that link and we can see that the information that's contained inside of this resource is simply just an HTML or a webpage. I'll go ahead and click back on my Biology432 link in my upper left corner to return back to my main page.
Another type of link is an outside web resource. Here we've got a web resource that's linking us out to the Recent 2009 Articles about Coral Zooxanthellae Symbiosis. The icon as listed for this shows a globe icon sitting on top of a page indicating that this is a web link and it's going to link us to an outside website. When we click on this link, another window opens up and now we get a listing of all the current Coral Reef research related to Coral Zooxanthellae Symbiosis for all 2009 Articles. This link has been setup inside of Google Scholar, which you can access separately at scholar. google.com. I'm going to go ahead and close this window to return back to my main course.
If I scroll down a little bit further, we can see that there are other types of resources here listed including folders of materials. In this case, I'll go ahead and click on this link and here my instructor has linked out to a whole folder full of content including Word documents, Excel documents, PDF files, Keynote presentations, and PowerPoint presentations. Each of these different document types I can click on and download the files for. Another way to download these files is to right-click or Ctrl+Click on the file and choose Save Link As and this will force your browser to download this file directly to your computer. I'll go ahead and hit Cancel in this file and then I'll return back to my main course by clicking on Biology432 in the upper left.
All the different document types appear in that way. If you want to look at all the different resources for your course all in one location, you can simply click on the Resources link underneath of the Activities block, which is usually located in the left-hand column. Clicking on Resources then shows you for each week of the semester, all of the resources or files that have been posted by your instructor for you to have a look at. This view also gives you a summary of what the information inside of that document is about, and now I'll return back to my course by clicking on the Biology432 link in the upper left-hand corner.
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