Regarding the course import for teachers to start from... I can envisage a situation whereby the original course author finds new information/ideas and adds stuff to the master course after the teacher has downloaded it, which in the current model would not make it to the teacher as the download is a one off process which they will not repeat. I would prefer a model whereby a course can act as a master template which gets updated regularly so that new questions, resources, activities etc appear dynamically as hidden items within the teacher's downloaded course, ready to be reviewed and revealed if needed. This would be like maintaining your Moodle install using CVS - you get updates all the time as they are created.
It would also be good to be able to track how many people are using a particular course and to have some sort of meta-forum for discussing changes and developemts. Many teachers will end up using the successful/well designed courses, so it would make a lot of sense to have a way of pooling their shared experience and getting that feedback back to the original creator. -- Matt Gibson 18:51, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Harvesting courses regularly and a few other comments
I've put this in the forum, but I'll say it here as well. If a site has a lot of courses to share with a hub, perhaps because they are an OpenCourseWare provider, they might prefer to supply an RSS or OAI list rather than click "publish" on each individual course. OCW Consortium members are already encouraged to offer an RSS feed (with DC metadata) of all their courses that is picked up by a number of OCW search tools. I'm sure Moodle users in that community would love the same approach to mean they could be included in the hubs as well.
To aid course harvesting (but to make publishing easier anyway) I'd like to see the DC metadata editing screen become part of the standard course settings screen, and the data pulled from here as part of the publish to hub functionality (and into any RSS or OAI service).
Using LOM as well as (or instead of) DC would allow more flexible searching at the hub with relatively little extra cost of data inputting.
Finally, there is a great deal of discussion in the OCW community about asset-level re-use. Anecdotal evidence from teachers suggests that the course-level is not fine-grained enough and they'd prefer to pick a single resource/image/activity. See http://opencontent.org/blog/archives/900 and related comments for example. So I'd like to see DC metadata added to resources and modules too, and the searching and import/export/enrol facility in the hub system work at this level also. -- Jenny Gray 14:48, 30 June 2009 (GMT)
I second the points Jenny made above. I can't see much call for importing a whole course, as it will be too much hassle to integrate with current stuff. Ideally, single activities and resources can be copied at once from a remote course. This is already possible within a single site using the contributed sharing cart block, and if this could be brought into core and made to work across sites, it would be a killer app.
If that gets done, it brings up an issue of copyright - some courses will have things that are only licenced for site use and cannot be shared. If there was a switch that would set the item to 'can't copy/view over mnet', then it would be possible to allow access to courses with commercial resources and only share the parts which a teacher has made themselves.
For me, this use case would be an absolute killer app and would make collaboration a breeze across whole countries at a time. -- Matt Gibson 11:37, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Lessons learnt as a Cool Course Competition admin
The following is a list of issues encountered when attempting to restore courses to http://coolcourses.moodle.org:
- Course includes user data or course users by mistake
- Course doesn't include required 3 different types of activity
- Course uses contributed code e.g. Questionnaire module, Game module, contributed question types (resulting in course failing to restore)
- Course creator doesn't agree (by ticking checkboxes) to statements regarding licensing
- Course contains inappropriate HTML tags
- Broken links e.g. images not being displayed (MDL-20255), MDL-21380
- Broken links in imported glossary entries
According to Eloy, "1, 3 and 4 should be handled automatically by "backup for hub" option in Moodle 2.0. 2 and 5 are not enforceable and 6 must be fixed."
In addition to sharing their course backup, I discovered that for courses containing glossary and/or database activities, people were keen to share glossary and database entries exported from their sites (via XML or CSV file).