Blended Learning ontwerpen met Het Interactief Blendpaneel

Op de MoodleMoot ten doop gehouden en vandaag weer aangescherpt: Het Interactief Blendpaneel. Dit is een mengpaneel waarmee je onderwijs kan ontwerpen. In onderstaande presentatie leg ik uit hoe het werkt. Het is nog in ontwikkeling, maar je kunt er al mee aan de slag.

Vandaag nam ik deel aan een sessie van Surf in het kader van Onderwijs op Maat. De vraag die we bespraken was: ‘Hoe komen we van een onderwijsvisie naar een ingerichte digitale leeromgeving?’ Aan het eind van de middag bleek de vraag meer te zijn: ‘Hoe helpen we bestuurders en docenten met het ontwikkelen van een onderwijsvisie’? En hoe maken we concreet wat de impact van een onderwijsvisie is op alle niveaus van onderwwijs, van curriculum, naar programma voor een leerjaar, naar cursus, opdracht en leeractiviteit?

Naar mijn idee werkt innovatie het beste als je het op alle niveaus tegelijk aanpakt met zowel bestuurders, docenten als studenten. Met het Interactieve Blendpaneel schuif je op alle niveaus onderwijs in elkaar.

Ik zie uit naar je reactie.

Customizing Moodle to create a seamless online UX for learners

Organisations such as yours spend considerable sums of money on an attractive corporate styling. This is applied in all corporate utterances, from jackets to wear at a conference to the signs in the building and of course, on the website. Your customers are used to this look and feel. What if they take an online course with you? It would be nice if they feel at home in your learning environment. But what if that’s Moodle?

    • Moodle looks ugly!
    • Moodle looks so clean!
    • Everybody recognizes Moodle immediately from the 20th century “boxes”!

Well, does this course page look like Moodle?


People who are familiar with Moodle will probably recognize some features. But it sure isn’t the cluttered course page one is used to see.

Online Academy for Physicians

We have designed and programmed this theme for our client American Medical Systems. Dr. Glyn J. Burtt, International Director of Physician Education and Development, approached us with his ambition to create a corporate academy for their customers. AMS always supports physicians who work with their products extensively. An online platform to offer instruction and guide surgeons’ practice with, for instance the GreenLight XPS Laser, is an important instrument in their customer relations process. Dr. Burtts plan was to build the F. Brantley Scott Physician Academy.

Dr. Burtt had a seamless environment in mind for users who migrate from product support on the corporate website to learning on the Academy.  That’s why our reference was their corporate style. Have a look at this screenshot from the website.


Physicians Communicate and Learn Mobile

The home page is inspired by these styling features.


The  website is designed with being visited with a tablet in mind. AMS specializes in developing systems for urological treatments. Urologists are techies and they walk around hospitals all day. Our Moodle theme design should therefor also fit neatly within 1024 x 768. The instructional design followed this principle. Everything the learner needs to move to a next level, fits in one screen view.

Introduction video only shown once

You may have noticed the button Show/Hide Introduction Video.

Directly under the menu the tablet screen is filled with an introductory video inviting visitors to join the learning program. After watching the video they swipe or scroll down to see what else is there, or they use the menu to embark on their learning journey.

On their next visit to the home page the video is hidden. As they have seen it already, they will want to search the Course Catalogue or check the Calendar for training events. If they want to see the video again or show it to a collegue during a coffee break they tap Show and the video slides down to fill the screen again. A nice custom built feature we use in all the courses for the introductory videos.

A theme reveals learning functionality in corporate style

On the screenshots you see some elements that reveal the curriculum and the learning functionality in the instructional design.


On the left you see how the Course Catalogue is categorized in Product > Level.

Trainees can learn their way up from the level Foundation to Master (Masters train surgeons). These levels correspond with their skills development using the Greenlight XPS Laser System.

The levels also correspond with the instructional strategy.

The courses in Foundation are designed for surgeons who embark on their learning journey as urologists. These have an instructional strategy based on Acquisition, set in an individual learning context. The course can be taken anytime.A course like Laser Physics is aimed at bridging the current knowledge of a surgeon in this domain to what is needed for understanding principles underlying safe use of laser technology on a patient.


Typical Moodle 2.8 Course Page

The target group is always in a hurry. Time lost on finding what to do and where to go is time lost for learning. That’s why we stripped the standard Moodle Course Page from all blocks. A Course only contains the learning activities and resources to acquire the knowledge of this particular topic. So we also took out section titles and icons and links to the typical Moodle items as Pages, Scorm packages or forums and swapped them for buttons. All the courses in Foundation have the same instructional course format so we could give these buttons the same name in each course.

  •  There is a Pre Test covering the material in the Module. If 70 % or more of the questions are answered correctly, the learner can skip the module and still get a Certificate. If not he has to Take the Module. These are self paced modules created in Captivate with BBC Horizon-like video clips.


    Custom Course page for F. Brantley Scott Academy

  • If some concepts needs clarification the button Discuss with Expert leads the learner to a Forum. Posts can only be answered by the Expert. Users can read all discussions to see if their question might be already answered.
  • Learn More opens a page with resources for further reference.
  • Evaluate invites users to give a review of their learning experience.
  • After this mandatory reflection on their learning outcome they can download and print their Certificate. Their results are tracked in their progress report.

How did we get here?

Talking through the Pedagogical Design

Glyn Burtt contacted us because he wanted to use Moodle for his corporate academy. He liked the idea of open source and he had read my post on Certainty Based Marking, an assessment method that is apt for physicians who need to rely on their knowledge when the going gets tough in the OR. I analyzed his plans for the curriculum that needed to be reflected on the Moodle site. What instructional strategies would be deployed and what combinations of resources and learning activities would be most effective, considering the professional context of the users?

Drawing Wire Frames based on User Stories

Moodle can accommodate practically every kind of learning and can organize it as you please. Before diving into theming and configuration of the site, setting up course categories and throwing content in courses, I took two steps to check with Glyn if his wishes were clear to us and to find solutions for steps in the learning and communication processes he had not thought of yet (this was not much, to be frank).

First I wrote short user stories for all the different roles of participants in the academy. The technique of writing user stories originates form software development, but I think they are immensely valuable for designing learning experiences. If the user stories were valid, according to product owner Glyn, our team knew what to configure, what could be used from the default Moodle functionality and what custom stuff we needed to program.

Next I drew wire frames to visualize the user stories. Wire frames, using Gliffy for instance, are easy to talk about. Is this what you want your users to see and do on the page? And how many clicks to get there? Here is an example.

Course page

After Glyn and I had sufficiently moved the items around and decided where each item should be on the page, a wire frame was ready for my partner Michiel Boerman, who used it to design and program the theme for Moodle. You would expect Michiel would ask me to keep in mind what possiblities Moodle has to set up a course page. But no, he said “Forget your Moodle experience”, because not Moodle is the source of the design principles but the pedagogical design, maximum usability and the design of the corporate website are the anchors.

Designing and programming the Theme

Michiel compared the wire frames to the AMS’ corporate website to see which elements from the website he could reuse. Then he looked at the Moodle code to see how he could build the menu, a grid for the home page and a course format.

Moodle doesn’t normally allow you to add a background to a topic section, least of all with alternating colors and an image behind it. Neither are buttons with a custom lay-out the standard, as you have seen in the screen shots. And of course it’s responsive so it adapts to the screen the page is viewed on. This is all custom programming in the Moodle code. And Moodle Moodle being open source, this is no problem at all. Glyn could check each iteration until it was to his liking. Editing content in the theme needed only a little guidance from me.

When the course format, as part of the theme, was finished, Sebsoft quickened the configuration process of the website by creating all the courses with the same template for all the items and helped with some other typical “make Moodle your own”-work. Hosting and installation was also their job, along with helpdesking me wherever I couldn’t find my way in Moodle quickly enough.

A Satisfied Customer

In this post I only talked about the website part of my work with Glyn for AMS. We went through the same steps for the learning modules that were created with Captivate as content for the Foundation courses. I am very happy that he has appreciated our cooperation.

Isabelle stepped in to educate me on optimising the content I had already developed for adult orientated learning. Her sound advice ensured that the project delivered a quality result that will stand the test of time. She gave invaluable advice on LMS deployment and her team created a functional platform for our initial trials. I wish I had Isabelle on board from the inception of the project – I could have avoided a number of time-sacrificing, project delaying pitfalls that needed ironing out later. She rose to the new challenges of managing contributions from collaborators in India and even tried to manage me! 

How to select a tool that fits your design?

9LinkedIn supports many interesting groups for people in the educational domain. The nicest group I subscribe to is LOSMakers (“Loose Makers”). The members, currently 334, talk about online tools and their usability. Every month there is a Tool Exploration, always held in some web conferencing tool. To see each other live we meet up every 3 months. On January 28 our topic is: how do you select a tool that fits your pedagogical plan? We can refer to two models. One is The Pedagogy Wheel and the other is Diana Laurillards Conversational Framework. How could that work and how can they help us to describe a tool so it helps us to choose from the toy store?

For the Dutch speaking audience of Losmakers, I created a presentation in Emaze.

Powered by emaze

1000 Tools in a list

A very active member of LOSMakers, Joost Verbrugge, has collected a yard long list of URL’s leading to online tools, categorized by functionality. Categories range from Brainstorming to Search options, and all kinds of types of producing media and online communication tools in between.

If I want to choose a tool to have my students easily create and share a video I can choose from a list of 25 online tools. I think they’re all free to use by the way. Obviously this list is fantastic. It grows daily, fed by tweets from people who signal tools to @VerbruggeJoost.

This categorization is a great help in the selection process. But, one obviously doesn’t start from this list when building an instructional scenario. “Hey, let me have my students make a game, because it sounds like fun! We’ll see what they learn from it.” When designing you would think:

I would like my students to understand some principles behind a well structured instructional text. I am going to let them compare three expertly written texts and search for examples of application of these principles. As a group they work online and collect these examples matching them to the principles.

What kind of tool would you suggest?

I am going to see how The Pedagogy Wheel helps me.

The Pedagogy Wheel based on Bloom’s Taxonomy

During the LOSMakers MeetUp we will go over the possibilities and pros and cons for about five tools. At the end we want to draw conclusions on useful labels for identifying tools. The group might work towards a database or tags for the tools. Three freelancing women are organizing the MeetUp. Su Rondon Gasque,  Jolien Wessels and me. Su suggested The Pedagogy Wheel as input, designed by Allan Carrington and others.

wheelYou can download the wheel as a pdf with all the apps linked. In 2013 already 8000 people had done this before you! The wheel shows apps for the iPad but also stuff you can use online or tools you have to buy, like Articulate. As you see, the apps are divided over Bloom’s Cognitive Learning Domains.

Choosing from the wheel menu would work like this, I think:

  1. Select a Domain your learning objective fits into. In the next circle in this piece of the pie you choose an Action verb that you have used in your objective (if you have written your objective as a performance, like Dr Mager taught us to)
  2. Choose an online Learning Activity that allows your students to perform the action(s)
  3. Select a tool based on the Activity that you want your students to use

Sounds easy.

Next task for you as a designer is of course to find out how the tool works and how to offer it. Is it best to present your assignment in the tool or somewhere else and than link to the tool? Do you see your target group eagerly dive into it? And, how are you going to make it available to them? Does it need installation, an account, or can you embed it somewhere?

Using the wheel for my learning task

In my example I launch my students safely from the Understanding platform. Surely, scaffolding is important, som more complex stuff will follow later. “Compare” is an action verb in the wheel. “Collect” examples and “match” them with principles are also part of the Bloom vocabulary.

Next: what activity will I get going online? It looks like I need Bookmarking and Commenting. Students can work straight into the example text I have given them.

From the tools in the outer ring I only know Twitter, Facebook and Google Search. iAnnotate is a name I associate with commenting into a pdf. Having checked this out in the AppStore, I think this tool can do the trick. My students need to share their stuff. No problem, I see they can share the annotated pdfs on Google Drive.

Before I would actually decide to use this, I have a long way to go researching and testing. The tool is not free, for instance. I would like my students to have a drop down box to choose the principles from, etcetera. (To be honest, as a Moodle user, I would first check out the plug in database. I think there is a pdf annotation plug in…)

The Conversational Framework

What I like about the wheel is that you can research tools driven by learning objectives. But, I miss the perspective of the pedagogy you as a teacher have chosen (or you are “invited” to apply by your institution).

Suppose you are not only thinking about having your students Evaluate texts but you also want to let them do this by Discussion. Categorizing tools with a combination of learning objectives and pedagogical strategy they afford, could be ideal.

Through a Mooc on blended learning organized by our Open University I stumbled on the work of Diana Laurillard. She works at the London Knowledge Lab (view her profile).

I am deeply interested in design methods for instruction, so I was delighted to see she published a book titled Teaching as a Design Science: Building Pedagogical Patterns for Learning and Technology. Building good instruction should be considered a design science, she says. I couldn’t agree more! It is awfully hard to prove scientifically what method or learning activity has a significant effect on learning outcome. Laurillard states that working as a designer and stealing from industrial or architectural designers lets you “articulate your pedagogy, adopt, adapt, test and improve it and even co-create and share it.” This will help in finding Holy Grails.

How does the framework work?

Laurillard explains her Conversational Framework in the first chapters of the book. In following chapters she discusses how you can use it when you are designing within the instructional strategy you have chosen, or when you want to evaluate what you just designed. No patience for a whole book? This link takes you to the moment in a recorded presentation on video where she starts explaining the Framework.

Here is an image of the framework.


The book explains how you can touch just one part of the framework, some parts, or all of them. You can take a trip through the whole framework with your learners, if you let them follow a sequence of patterns of teaching-learning cycles, each based on a different learning strategy.

At first it takes quite some mental work to get it, but if you analyse it from the viewpoints that:


  • the learner is always in the middle of the framework and
  • he is “in conversation” with either the teacher on the left or his peers on the right and
  • working conceptually or practising

it becomes clearer in which parts of the framework the strategy and pattern you have chosen are sitting.

Teaching/Learning cycles

A teaching-learning-cycle contains these steps for conceptual learning:


Learner has a goal > She studies, investigates or discusses concepts (action) > She generates some form of output (without that, feedback is impossible) > Teacher (and/or peers) give feedback > Learners revises her concepts and reaches her goal > New goal

For learning in practice or modeled learning:

Learner has a goal > She studies a model (action) > She tries it out in the real world or in a practice environment (action and output synchronously, with or without peers) > Feedback is returned intrinsically from the environment > She adapts her actions until she reaches her goal > New goal

Before we can really use new concepts or skills in our work we need to go through a number of these cycles. As a designing teacher we give our learners a series of Assignments. An assignment guides learners through a cycle that is optimally aligned to their learning goal and learning context.

They will learn either individually and only focused on conceptual knowledge, for instance What is the short term memory and how much information can it hold? Or they go through them in dialogue with a teacher and peers while experimenting in practice with new concepts. How can I create e-learning modules taking in account the limitations of short term memory? And all variations in between. These variations are determined by the strategies you choose as a designer.

In the chapters consecrated to strategies she discusses learning through Acquisition, Inquiry, Discussion, Practice and Collaboration. Examples of the way in which digital technology can facilitate them,helps to choose appropriate tools. She rarely names specific apps or software, but describes activities or features like hyperlinking, web quests or forums.

If you are interested in how these cycles look for each strategy, then move on to the next post.

Using the Conversational Framework for my learning task

So what strategy would I choose for the task in which I have learners understand principles of good instructional writing by recognizing examples of application? A simple form of Inquiry combined with Discussion, I think it is. The learners’ ideas about the principles will get sharpened in his own mind by distinguishing examples and receiving correction form the teacher. He would get help from peers in his reflection on the matching of principles with examples. I would try to find a clever way to link the group discussion to fragments in the texts they have read. This would perhaps take me to iAnnotate!

Synthesis possible between the wheel and the framework?

How do we proceed from here if our goal is to describe digital/online tools for education (or team collaboration) so we can select the tool that facilitates our design for teaching best? Should we:

  • design a database with fields for Blooms domains as well as for the strategies so you can do a combined search
  • write a formula that describes the pattern in the framework and make tools searchable per formula
  • create a set of tags for the Action verbs, activities and strategies
  • create a model that shows a synthesis of Blooms domains, verbs and activities and patterns from the framework
  • forget about synthesis and go for just one model, as using one model is already complicated enough?

And what to do with tools like AdobeConnect, platforms like Moodle or Learning Stone or YouTube? With these toys you can do almost anything, depending on the task you give your learners!

What strikes my while I am reading a post of another instructional hero, Clive Shepherd, is  that Laurillard is very much focused on teaching an d learning in formal higher education. Does her framework and the strategies she describes, cover workplace learning where so much learning is happening informally? This is a context for learning many of the LosMakers are designing for. Maybe ask Laura herself?

Read on from here to gain insight in the combination of pedagogical strategy and teaching-learning-cycles. Or jump straight to the overview of possible fields for a tool database.

Easy upload of video in Moodle; PoodLL as solution?

isaonscreen.007“How am I doing?”

This is something a learner wants to know when she is practicing communication skills. She doesn’t want to wait for a face-to-face workshop to get feedback on her progress. And she doesn’t have to, because there is so much you can do online! As a designer of a blended skills training you need tools to facilitate it. An easy and secure upload of video is the most important condition. In Moodle you can use PoodLL. Let’s see how this works.

Learning how to present via webcam

First a little information on our context. My colleagues of BestBlend are working on an online learning program for professionals who want to host a smashing webinar or give a riveting online presentation. They will speak with an audience through their webcam. There is quite a lot to learn here. Keeping your audience focused is a much bigger challenge if you as presenter are only virtually present.

Our program is built with four blocks:

  1. What are you going to tell and how? What is the essence of your story? What storyline and metaphores will work best?
  2. How do you express yourself as a presenter? This is all about you, your voice, your non-verbal behavior, your “presence”.
  3. How do you visualize your story? Is it only your audience is looking at or do you tell the story with captivating slides and video clips? And how do you interact online?
  4. How to combine it all? How to use your new presentation skills while you are operating  the software? This could be Adobe Connect, WebEx or just Skype.

Use video to feel closer to each other

We as trainers will be socially present in the online environment. Our aim is to make the participants feel we are with them, although all contact will be virtual. One of the ways to keep in touch, is to present important steps in the program on video. Participants see us present online and will use our behavior as a model. So, we as trainers, will profit from an easy way to upload our clips.

Participants show their skills on video

But, we as trainers are not the most important target group for the easy video upload solution. Our participants are! The second block, that focuses on expression, will lean heavily on submitting and discussing videoclips of participants’ performance. In thoe other blocks we will use at well. Whether your story really works, will only become clear if you tell it to an audience.

Our program is mostly based on a social learning strategy. Something like this

Figure borrowed from; very good articles on the benefits and pitfalls of learning from social media

The coach looks at the participant’s performance, discusses with him – and if he wants that, also with peers – what his most urgent learning points are. The coach will explain, in an online conversation (Adobe Connect) what makes his behavior attractive, distractive, boring, crystal clear or incomprehensible. If there is real agreement on the learning goals, the participant will be offered examples and guidelines and exercises to practice. Soon there will be a second version to show and review.

As the participant’s ambition is to present through the webcam, it is rather obvious if he submits his work via online video as well. We will do this synchronously. Then the coach and maybe peers are watching while the learner is presenting. This has value because it’s always more exciting if you know that you’re being watched. Also, the viewers can give there first impressions. This however, we reserve for a moment near the end of the learning curve. Because for practicing the learner must be able to record, watch and evaluate, throw away and record again, until he thinks it will not get better and he needs feedback.

How to facilitate recording and submitting video?

We know that anything that makes a participant think or doubt his next step in an online environment, will take the dynamic out of the learning process. The attention should not go to searching for the right button but to “How can I apply the feedback I just received in my next attempt to make a catchy performance?”

Why is it such an issue? Everybody takes videos with his smartphone or tablet and throws them on Facebook or Twitter! Looking at my own learning curve regarding uploading video, it was remarkably short. I am already so familiair with how interfaces work that I can’t even remember thinking consciously about “Oh my, what to do next?” Even switching from iPhone to Android was no big deal.

Moodle is not Facebook

facebookAn online environment like Moodle somehow isn’t like Facebook. On Facebook it doesn’t matter which device or platform you use or which players you have installed. Behind the screen Facebook converts the video to a format that will work on practically every device. Facebook talks to your device, recognizes the configuration and spits out the right file format. No “Oh shoot, Flash doesn’t work on an iPad”, or “Jeez, a mov file can only be played by a Mac, unless people install Quicktime”.

(Too?) many options

Moodle has many different ways for participants to show a videoclip. First of all, there has to be a container to put it in. Participants with the role of student can not just dump their video anywhere. There has to be a learning activity where they are invited to do this. Could be a Forum, Assignment, Wiki or Workshop. I will not go into the differences here. Let’s think of a Forum where participants share a video with their coach and peers and gather feedback from them. In a Forum they can make a post, and then:

  • Use the Add media button in the editor
  • Upload a video file as an attachment
  • Use a plug in like PoodLL Anywhere (more about that later)
  • Upload the video to Vimeo or YouTube and link or embed the video
  • Link to a file in their personal Dropbox

What criteria we think are important?

All these options have their pro’s and cons. Criteria one could use to evaluate these options are:

  1. Is it easy? Not only for software-savvies, but also for hesitant software users?
  2. Is it secure? A participant wants to be absolutely sure that no one will ever accidentally find his video.
  3. Does the video play everywhere, even on iPads (no Flash) without installing extra’s?
  4. Does the video play smoothly with good sound?
  5. Is our server not overloaded with data within a few weeks?

My plan is to discuss all options and hold them against the criteria.

In this post I would like to zoom in on the PoodLL Anywhere plug in for Moodle. Here’s a short screencast:

What do you think?

Before I will give any comments, I want to see how my colleagues experience working with it. But, I need to warn them for a little something.

As you saw, the PoodLL Anywhere plug in sits in the Moodle editor. The editor is everywhere in Moodle, whether you are creating a Page or Book (not for students) or a Forum post, Wiki page or handing in an Assignment (for students). That’s why the plugin is called PoodLL Anywhere! When I was recording I was in doubt about showing a small Moodle thing or not. This is really something an unsuspecting participant will choke on.

If you have just logged into Moodle, open a Forum, and start a new post, the editor looks like this:

Editor collapsed

Editor collapsed

Now where are the PoodLL icons?

Editor expanded

Editor expanded

You have to click on the icon in the upper left corner to expand the editor and make the PoodLL icons appear. When Moodle 2.5 was introduced this collapse/expand feature was supposed to make editing easier…

Well, let’s forget about this sidestep and see how my colleagues like this little PoodLL. In my next post I wil give a review.

MoodleMoot 2014 Social learning in practise

Everybody is talking about social learning, whether informal, non-formal, structured or free. Moodle was originally created to support all kinds of social learning. The combination of Moodle with social learning is golden, we thought, so this is our focus for the Dutch Moot on June 12 in Utrecht. Does social learning spark your attention and are you curious what you can do with a wonderful LMS like Moodle, come to our Moot!

I am very happy to have Matt Bury, all the way from Canada, to introduce the topic of “social presence”, an important condition for making social learning work. A short interview to hear what he will do on the 12th.

Although MoodleMooters are familiar with blended learning you do not see much of it around a Moot. Would they be willing to “learn social”?

Matt and I set up a small number of learning activities in which participants can be socially present and explore the theme together. Will we see a lot of activity? Whatever the outcome, it will give us food for discussion.

Here you see a screencast of the section in our Moodle course with a clarification of the activities we will hope to see people take part in.

Do you want to experience social learning with Moodle and do this stuff yourself? Participation is not very expensive. As a non-profit society with sponsors, we can keep our entrance fee very low: only € 25,00 as a member and € 50,00 for non-members.

Practical details

  • Date: June, 12
  • Time: 13:00 door open, 13:30 start Keynote, end 20:00 hrs (wth hot meal)
  • Location: De Knoop, Utrecht, next to station
  • Enroll: see

Hoe ontwerp je een goede opleiding voor een bedrijfsacademie

Met Janneke Jong heb ik een blended opleiding met Moodle ontwikkeld voor materiedeskundigen van de Douane. Het project was zowel voor ons persoonlijk als voor de organisatie bijzonder.


Janneke vertelt in deze video dat dit project voor haar de overgang markeerde van inhoudelijk beleidsmaker naar opleider. Ze geniet van het veelzijdige en creatieve werk. Het ontwerpvirus is besmettelijk.

De BelastingAcademie

Voor de organisatie was Liquide Middelen de eerste opleiding waarin vol werd ingezet op blended learning en waarin veel meer mogelijkheden van Moodle werden gebruikt dan voorheen. Bij de Belastingacademie heeft de opleiding inmiddels een voorbeeldfunctie (al ging lang niet alles vlekkeloos). De ervaringen met dit project leiden tot veel verbeteringen in de organisatie. Janneke houdt dat vuurtje brandend.


Voor mij was het ook bijzonder omdat ik vanaf de analyse tot en met oplevering betrokken was en al mijn kwaliteiten als ontwerper kon inzetten. De sfeer waarin we werkten aan de opleiding was open, stimulerend en warm. Pfoe, wat hebben we hier veel van geleerd!

Wil je meer weten neem dan contact op. Janneke staat ook open voor vragen.

In dit project was ik ingehuurd en uitgeleend door UP Learning.

Teammanagers leren actief met Moodle

Het is mijn stokpaardje, maar ik spring er toch weer op: Moodle kan zoveel meer dan SCORM-pakketten afspelen of bestandjes aanbieden. Moodle kan de ruggegraat van je opleiding zijn en deelnemers meevoeren in actief leren. Daarom ben ik gelukkig met Jos & Paula Grob en Twan Paes van EMORA School of Teammanagement. Ze zijn bevlogen in het ondersteunen van action learning met Moodle en hebben kort geleden zowel hun site als hun didactiek in Moodle ge-upgrade.

Waarom en hoe? Een interview

Ik hield met Jos een interview waarin hij vertelt over de leeromgeving die zij creëren voor teammanagers die zich willen ontwikkelen. Laat je inspireren.

Interview Jos Grob Emora from Isabelle Langeveld on Vimeo.

Action learning

EMORA’s instructiestrategie is action learning. Op de site van de International Foundation for Action Learning vind je een heldere en beknopte uitleg. Uiteraard ben ik ook een fan van deze aanpak.

Geïnterviewed via Skype en op video opgenomen

Dit lijkt een zijstapje, maar is het toch niet. Ik heb Jos via Skype gesproken en het gesprek opgenomen met Call Recorder. (In deze opname zit nog wat ruis en geknetter. Dat is mijn eigen schuld.) Deze tool sluit heel goed aan bij action learning. Soms wil je als docent een deelnemer even buiten zijn leergroep coachen. Skypen is makkelijk, want niemand hoeft te reizen. Voor de deelnemer is het prettig om het gesprek nog eens terug te kijken, want soms is het lastig om alle informatie en eventuele emotie in één keer te behappen. Je kunt zelfs tijdens het gesprek een fragment markeren.

Op naar de Moodle Conferentie … in Heraklion

Morgen om deze tijd ben ik op Kreta. De keuze voor de vakantiebestemming is dit jaar ingegeven door de Moodle Research Conference die plaatsvindt in Heraklion. Ik verheug me er erg op want de sessies zijn echt gericht op de vraag wat nu werkt qua instructiestrategieën in Moodle, voor allerlei doelgroepen, en hoe je de Moodle cursus daar helemaal op kunt finetunen, met goede plug ins. Learning design tools, “non-trivial collaborative learning”, problem-based learning… lijkt me allemaal heel inspirerend, wat ook weer fijn is voor mijn klanten die van mijn nieuwe kennis gaan profiteren.

Evidence based instruction design…

Ik ben vooral benieuwd of de sprekers kunnen bewijzen wat nu effectief is. Je kunt in instructieontwerp zo zitten modderen met je keuze voor werkvormen en hoe je je cursisten daarin meekrijgt. Kun je hard maken dat het echt de meest effectieve leeractiviteit is als een subgroep samen in een Wiki een Checklist gaat opstellen, of verslag uitbrengt van een situatie op het werk aan een coach in een Dialoog?

Spannende innovaties bij de Belastingdienst

Op dit moment ben ik bezig bij de Douane, uitgehuurd door Stoas, om samen met een heel enthousiaste en gedegen inhoudsdeskundige een opleiding te ontwikkelen over het Proces Liquide Middelen (let op Schiphol op de posters over aangifte doen van geld). Belastingdienst en Douane zijn, zoals veel Moodlegebruikers, nog vooral gewend om Moodle te gebruiken als platform voor SCORM-pakketten, maar gaat nu Moodle gebruiken zoals het bedoeld is, ondersteund door Stoas. Dat gaat gelijk op met een integratie van leren en werken en van integratie van leren van vaktechniek met communicatieve vaardigheden. Elkaar aanspreken op kwaliteit van werk doe je immers vanuit je inzicht in het werkproces. Cursisten gaan video’s insturen, hun eigen job aids opstellen, via vragen en ervaringen in forums de inhoud van presentaties tijdens bijeenkomsten beïnvloeden en worden online gecoached door collega’s die al een opleiding over Liquide Middelen hebben gehad. Allemaal innovaties, waarvan ik het heel gaaf vind om er een bijdrage aan te leveren.

Wordt Moodle te moeilijk? Of is het dat altijd al geweest?

De afgelopen tijd heb ik weer eens ervaren hoe enorm moeilijk Moodle eigenlijk te leren is voor beginners. Samen met Ger Tielemans begeleid ik een cursus voor IRC Water and Sanitation Center waarin deelnemers leren hoe je het ontwikkelproces voor een cursus aanpakt en hoe je daarbij rekening houdt met de mogelijkheden van Moodle. Ze gaan hun ontwerp ook realiseren in Moodle.

We hebben ze nogal in het diepe gegooid, hebben we gemerkt. We zelf zijn in de “expertval” gedonderd. Ger en ik hebben de groep overspoeld met al het leuks dat je met Moodle kunt doen. Natuurlijk hebben we dat in een goede structuur gegoten, maar het plaatje dat wij heel helder in ons hoofd hebben, konden we helaas niet in een keer in de hersens van de deelnemers projecteren. Tja, dat is dus de kern van instructie geven! Dit is voor ons een enorm waardevolle leerervaring om het met een volgende groep heel anders aan te pakken.

Toch blijft het een dilemma. Je kunt niet Moodle leren gebruiken zonder na te denken over je cursusontwerp. Ik hoor ook mensen zeggen dat ze er weinig aan hebben om te weten waar je moet klikken om een forum aan te maken als ze niet eerst bedacht hebben waarom dat in hun cursusontwerp zou passen. Ik hoop dat ik in Heraklion ook kan praten met ervaren Moodleaars over slimme manieren om mensen stap voor stap voor Moodle te leren ontwikkelen. Graag kom ik daar na mijn vakantie op terug.

Als Michiel en ik uitgerust zijn op Kreta ga ik verder bij de Douane en bij IRC om hen  te helpen met een soort pipeline for course design. En op 1 november begin ik bij de ParanassiaBavoGroep voor twee dagen per week als projectleider e-learning/Moodle. Ik vervang mede Ned-Moovelid Evie van Tiel die op wereldreis gaat. (Ik wil ook op wereldreis!!)

Andere plannen

Vorige maand heb ik mijn Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency gehaald, met een Grade A. Ik ben best wel trots, want veel hoger kun je niet qua niveau, maar dat wil ik eigenlijk wel. Na mijn vakantie ga ik uitvogelen wat ik nog meer met Engels kan doen. Ik gebruik het nu bij IRC waar alles in het Engels gaat en het zou leuk zijn om meer voor Engelstalige organisaties te gaan schrijven/ontwikkelen.

Tien tien

Op 10 oktober hoop ik je te zien bij de Masterclass van Marcel de Leeuwe, het eerstvolgende Ned-Moove event.

En nu: stemmen voor ik het vergeet, het is nu belangrijker dan ooit heb ik het gevoel. Nog ff snel taxi reserveren, naar de boekhandel en dan pakken.

Join our Moodle team

We are looking for a Moodlerer. Organisations with education as their core business show more and more interest for Moodle. The high attendance at the MoodleMoot in Amsterdam last May was a clear signal (nearly 100 people!). In addition, my partner Michiel Boerman and me receive more and more requests for information about what it takes to set up a Moodle site.

Michiels projects ask for highly complex programming work, fit to the needs of our clients. My work is focussed on the didactical issues related to blended learning and on producing attractive content. Clients sometimes want to delegate all instructional design to us. Because of this growth in Moodle related work we want to expand our Moodle team.

We need a Moodler

We hope to get in touch wit a ‘technical person’ who has the same love for Moodle as we do, or who wants to find out if he can fall in love with it! Maybe you have already some experience in the management of IT-systems, or programming in PHP, maybe even in an educational environment and you want to dive into Moodle. People with Moodle experience have of course an advantage, but there are other important qualities we are keen on.

Team of freelancers

Michiel and me both have our own businesses. We sometimes work apart on our projects, but if Moodle is the focus of the project we join up as a team and present ourselves under the name Helder & Wijzer. Don’t expect us to book you for 40 hours a week for the rest of the year! At the moment we do need assistance but you will work as a freelancer and bill us for your hours.

What we hope to discover in you

We will end with a list of tasks we want to load on your shoulders but first of all your professional attitude is important to us:
You are:

  • interested in (web tools for) learning, education and collaboration processes and in social media
  • curious and eager to learn
  • very accurate and neat
  • responsible and accountable
  • able to see work and plan it autonomously, but you keep communicating with us on what you are doing and we can trust your input in the planning and budgeting phase
  • friendly but explicit to our clients
  • not afraid to communicate in English (nice if you also speak Dutch)

What kind of work can you expect

There are a lot of tasks we would like to delegate:

  • install Moodle and Mahara
  • research plug ins, install and evaluate them and propose the best options in view of client specifications and future development of Moodle core and modules (follow Moodle Tracker)
  • upgrade existing installations and custom modules
  • connect repositories and other systems f.i. for student administration
  • set up question banks, course categories, site pages, MyMoodle pages, grade books, cohorts, groups according to the functional design
  • translate a graphic design into a theme and program templates for Moodle and Mahara
  • program custom functionalities (PHP-experience is very important as we have urgent programming work)

Are you interested?

Check Contact and send me an e-mail.

MoodleMoot 30 mei – samen een aantrekkelijke leeromgeving bouwen met Moodle

Op 30 mei organiseert Ned-Moove, de Nederlandse Moodlevereniging, haar jaarlijkse conferentie. Gebruikers van Moodle uit alle hoeken van opleidingsland, van PO tot bedrijfsopleidingen, komen bij elkaar om kennis en ervaring uit te wisselen over leren met Moodle. Dit jaar is het centrale thema: hoe werken docenten, ontwerpers en content-ontwikkelaars, HRD-ers en management samen om een rijke en effectieve leeromgeving te bouwen waar een cursist zich thuis voelt?

Het programma is vrijwel rond. We zijn blij met Hans de Zwart, een van onze founding fathers, die zijn keynote gaat houden over de toekomst van ELO’s voor kenniswerkers. Als professionals een soort handelsreizigers worden die hun kennis dan eens een tijd voor bedrijf X en dan weer bij organisatie Y uitventen, hoe willen zij dan leren? Voor hen is toch nooit alles in één leeromgeving te halen, al is hij nog zo ‘rijk’ ontworpen met alle toeters en bellen die Moodle biedt? Weten managers, ontwerpers en trainers wel genoeg van hun behoeftes? Ik ben daar heel benieuwd naar. Zelf ben ik natuurlijk ook zo’n nomadische kenniswerker. Waar haal ik het zelf eigenlijk vandaan?

De leeromgeving is …

…een certificatenfabriek, nee een speeltuin, een loungebar in een bibliotheek, een biechtstoel…

Wat ik wil weten, komt vaak tot mij via tweets van interessante lui op het gebied van leren met technologie, zoals Wilfred Rubens, Marcel de Leeuwe of Audrey Watters, maar als ik behoefte heb aan verdieping pak ik een boek. Ben nu bezig in Pervasive Information Architecture. Designing Cross-Channel User Experiences, van Resmini en Rosati. Ben het woord e-learning er nog niet in tegengekomen, maar toch is het interessant voor ons want blended learning is nu eenmaal een cross-channel experience.

Nu kom ik weer terug bij het thema van deze MoodleMoot want ik kwam in dat boek de parabel van de zes blinden en de olifant tegen. Je kent het wel.

Een olifant is in het dorp aangekomen. De plaatselijke blinden willen wel eens een olifant voelen. “Hé, een olifant is een pilaar”, roept de blinde die zijn poot aanraakt. “Nee, het is een soort touw”, zegt degene die de staart heeft gepakt. “O nee, het is een waaier”, beweert de man die met het oor wappert. “Jullie hebben het allemaal fout, want het is een grote muur”, roept degene die zijn handen op de enorme zij van het beest heeft gelegd.

Enzovoort. Er ontstaat een stevig dispuut, dat pas opgelost wordt als de wijze man van het dorp hen allemaal gelijk geeft. “Jullie hebben allemaal één stukje gevoeld en samen is dat een olifant.

Open elkaar de ogen en ontwikkel samen

Als in een grote opleidingsinstelling of organisatie met eigen opleidingsafdeling managers, onderwijskundigen, IT-ers en docenten gaan samenwerken aan de inrichting van een leeromgeving met aantrekkelijke cursussen zijn ze als die blinden die allemaal hun eigen belangen en ervaringen inbrengen.

Klik om te vergroten

Daarom hebben we drie tracks gevuld met sessies vanuit het perspectief van management, instructie-ontwerpers en docenten. In het schema hiernaast zie je dat ze elk met hun eigen vragen en belangen aan een leeromgeving werken. Soms begrijpen ze elkaar helemaal niet. Hopelijk is er juist een soepele doorstroom van kennis en ervaring. We moedigen daarom deelnemers aan om veel van track te wisselen, zodat je ervaringen vanuit verschillende perspectieven kunt combineren. Ga bijvoorbeeld eerst

  • Luisteren hoe een docent als Cees van Diest bij de informatica-opleiding van NOH-I zijn studenten binnen Moodle heeft begeleid
  • Dan bij Susanne Groeliker en Francois Walgering hoe een doordacht opleidingsontwerp als Virtual Action Learning in elkaar zit en hoe je dat in Moodle kunt bouwen
  • En ten slotte hoe je de implementatie van een nieuwe ELO of een nieuw opleidingsconcept kunt voorbereiden met een management game, geleid door nog een Ned-Moove founding father Pieter van der Hijden

Volg je dan de omgekeerde weg (van gebruik via ontwerp naar besluit) of juist de optimale route (lerend van ervaringen in het gebruik tot een goed plan komen)?

Meld je aan en kom meedenken en -praten.

Aantrekkelijk programma, ook voor non-Moodlers

Met veel plezier heb ik dit programma samengesteld. Er is echt voor iedereen die met Moodle werkt iets te halen, misschien met uitzondering van de echte techneuten. Het is een mooie doorsnede geworden van sectoren en doelgroepen en er zullen veel Moodlesites te zien zijn. Maar ook voor mensen die wel veel met e- en blended learning bezig zijn, maar Moodle (nog!) niet gebruiken is het een vruchtbare middag. Bovendien kost het bijna niets!


Aan het eind van de middag houden we een debat over de vraag wat de beste methodiek is om vanuit ieders belang, kennis en ervaring de cursist te kunnen geven wat hij nodig heeft. Hoe help je elkaar? Zodat we niet als zes blinden allemaal om het hardst roepen dat we gelijk hebben.