In more EDUCAUSE news, Moodlerooms, introduced its joule Learning Management Platform today. While Moodle is well-known open source technology in educational circles, many institutions lack the time or internal expertise to fully leverage its capabilities. Moodlerooms has filled the gap, providing Moodle implementations in a variety of settings. Now, however, many of the features that users either built themselves or found via third parties are integrated into the company's joule platform.
According to the Moodlerooms site,
With outcomes-based learning, enhanced reports and notifications, federated content management, supported integrations, simplified administration and a customizable streamlined user interface, joule is the perfect fit for any institution or organization.
This is, of course, PR-speak, but the feature set described in the press release is quite interesting:
- Instructors can enhance classroom activities with online quizzes, assignments, resources and forums that are linked to outcomes and standards.
- Organizations can efficiently monitor student activities and provide notifications to promote successful learning behaviors.
- Course designers can streamline course creation by developing useful tags for learning objects that are catalogued in a federated repository.
- Participants can access tutorials and Frequently Asked Questions from within the platform to get immediate end-user support.
- Organizations can select from a wide range of tested open-source and third-party applications to create engaging courses, including an integrated Web conferencing tool from WebEx, Turnitin plagiarism tools, and a portable e-portfolio solution from eFolioWorld
- Educators can transfer their courses and content from an existing LMS for a smooth transition.
The built-in conduit technology allows for close integration of Moodle with a student information system and other student data stores. Similarly, as schools increasingly turn away from grades as the sole measure of student success, the built-in portfolio tools may be particularly useful. With parent access, social media tools, standards integration, and rubrics, parents may finally start to understand standards- and outcomes-based education.
OK, well maybe not. However, joule, at least at first blush, looks to be one of those tools for which educators might actually be willing to pay.