Moodle v Google Tools

We’re in the 1-2pm time slot, I have chosen “Why is Everyone Asking for  a Moodle?”  It is my suspicion that between Google Docs (GD), the Google Apps, Google Sites (GS) and PowerSchool, we will be able to do most of the things Moodle can. (My guess is the quiz feature of Moodle isn’t an option in Google Docs but QuizStar is free now so…)  I understand the tools are not the same, but it will be interesting to see what features of Moodle these folks display. As I sit in the session, I will post their examples below in bullet points, and then in (parentheses), will post how we can or can’t do what was presented with either Goole Docs or Wikispaces. Their presentation is on a PC, they like the open source aspect of Moodle, not vendor specific or static.

  • Paper monster (avoid emailing files, GD answer: share file)
  • Moodle has wikis, so does Google sites (I love Wikispaces and many on our staff use wikis from Wikispaces).
  • Flip charts: (ActiveInspire file posted) – you can post files in a Google Site or Wikispaces.
  • Embed Google Docs presentation (easily done on a GS or W)
  • Create a spreadsheet and post it (easily done in either GD or W)
  • Hotline to other places ina document (done in GS or W)
  • Asynchronous – “autolinking” to connect points of the Moodle to others (e.g. forms) – GD has forms that are able to be hyperlinked, I can’t really tell if there is more to what they are presenting or not.
  • They started on a Windows server that didn’t go well, they are now on a Linux server
  • Their login for Moodle is the same as any of their other login environment (e.g. logging in to computers)
  • They hired a branding person to polish Moodle and make it look seamless with the branding
  • Once you are member of certain parts o f Moodle, you can set up a “My Moodle” and see what is part of your Moodle, not the entire piece.
  • File management: they used elfresco (web-based file sharing ap) V2 works well with Google Docs (obviously so does GS and W)
  • Their teachers use “Grade-level file sharing” (our teachers share via Google Docs, can set up folders, etc).
  • They file in Moodle different files in multiple areas, they are looking for ways to streamline file sharing

They mentioned SlideBoom, I haven’t used or heard of this, but it looks cool, sounds like SlideShare

  • They are now investigating how to share files, they haven’t figured it out. They look at how to not use their own server space for hosting files.
  • They use PowerSchool

Side note: Have you ever sat in a presentation done by a team where they don’t really plan exactly what to say, they just say, this “This person will talk about… and this person will talk about…” and it isn’t timed out and isn’t polished?

I use BlackBoard when I teach for Saint Mary’s and when I did my Masters’ Program, I had to create an online unit using a CMS (I chose BlackBoard) so really, so far, I don’t see how this is transformative yet. I understand that if we are going to use Google Sites, we need to create some templates fr our staff, but we could do it.

  • Wikis (check)
  • Forms (check)
  • Google Docs embedded (check)

Hmmm, many people have left the room.

  • How to organize discussions instead of emailing out

I am not sold on Moodle  – I believe, with planning and organization,  we could do this with Google Docs, Sites and Groups; it definitely helps that we’re already a Google School.  (Please, if you love Moodle, jump in and convince me! 🙂

2 thoughts on “Moodle v Google Tools”

  1. I’m not sold on Moodle either. It looks the ability to make anything public. For instance, if I want to have outside people fill in a form. GD does that.

    Out of the three (Blackboard, Moodle and Google apps), I go with gApps (esp. if Blogger is included).

    Congrats on sticking it out!!!

  2. I’m with you on gApps for our school. BTW, I love the way you presented your post. Thanks for sticking out the entire presentation, and taking one for the team 🙂

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