Book Image

Moodle 2.5 Multimedia - Second Edition

By : Joao Pedro Soares Fernandes
Book Image

Moodle 2.5 Multimedia - Second Edition

By: Joao Pedro Soares Fernandes

Overview of this book

Multimedia is a very old human endeavor. It has taken mankind almost 30,000 years since painting on cave walls to get a combination of text, image, sound, and video all working in the same medium, that is, in motion pictures. Finally, after thousands of years of human history, we can all (not just an elite few) create multimedia easily using Moodle. Moodle was built around an idea of learning that happens when a group of people construct things for one another, collaboratively creating a small culture of shared artifacts with shared meanings. A tutorial-based guide, with clear illustrations and examples of how to create, convert and add multimedia to Moodle using a range of free e-learning software tools and web applications. This book follows the design of resources and activities for the course “Music for everyday life”. The tasks presented are quick and easy to do for teachers and trainers with busy schedules. Giving readers an insight into the creation and integration of multimedia in Moodle courses. Starting with images you will learn to create photo collages, screenshots and comic strips. Then you will discover audio and how to extract audio from CDs to create a soundtrack for a movie and a podcast. Later, you will use video to produce a trailer for a movie, photo slideshows, online TVs and screencasts. Following that, you will develop an understanding of interactive elements and web communication, such as online maps, interactive timelines or web meetings. Finally, you will look at multimedia quizzes and assessment of multimedia assignments, ending with general issues on copyright, licensing and safety. A focus of the book is to show readers that using multimedia is not just about improving instruction, but also improving the ways in which students can can now create multimedia easily, and share it without great effort.. To make this easier, many of the moodle tutorials in the book will be based on activities designed for students to create, discuss and assess each other's multimedia works.
Table of Contents (15 chapters)
Moodle 2.5 Multimedia
About the Author
About the Reviewers

Configuring Moodle for multimedia

Moodle, as a Web-based learning management system/virtual learning environment, is prepared for a range of multimedia elements (not for creation, but for integration). We can easily add images, videos, and sound files. And if everything works out as expected, we will just need to make a link to the multimedia file, and Moodle will do the rest to embed a player and show it.

However, there are some Moodle settings that we should be aware of that make this use of multimedia easier. We should ask our Moodle administrator to do the following:

  • Enable the multimedia plugins: In the Site administration block, go to Plugins | Filters | Manage filters and on the dropdown of the Active? column for Multimedia plugins, change it to On and only apply it to Content).

  • Allow the EMBED and OBJECT tags: In the Site administration block, go to Security | Site policies and select the checkbox for Allow EMBED and OBJECT tags field, and save the changes.

  • Enable trusted content : In the Site administration block, go to Users | Permissions | Define roles, and for the Student role, select the checkbox Allow for the option Trust submitted content.

  • Use the TinyMCE HTML editor : In the Site administration block, go to Plugins | Text editors | Manage editors and enable it. This option is usually enabled by default.

  • Enable RSS feeds : In the Site administration block, go to Advanced features and select the Enable RSS fields checkbox. After this, you will need to enable RSS feeds in each module that generates them: Database, Forum, and Glossary. In the Site administration block, go to Plugins | Activity modules and select the option Yes for Enable RSS feeds, after clicking on the name of each of these modules.

  • Increase the maximum upload file size : Multimedia files can be sometimes larger than common document files, so having a good upload size limit will be helpful. A maximum upload size of 16 MB will be enough for common uses. If our Moodle installation has less than that, we could ask our administrator to increase it. In the php.ini file (or in the .htaccess file), change the following values: post_max_size = 16777216 and upload_max_filesize = 16777216. In Apache's http.conf or php.conf file, change the value of LimitRequestBody to 16777216. Then, in the Site administration block, go to Security | Site policies and in the drop-down box for the Maximum uploaded file size field, select Server limit.

Note that Moodle administrators can refuse to change some of these settings as they can overload the server, so we may need to ask them to upload larger files for us. Multimedia files, especially videos, can be very large files, so we should have some preoccupation with the size of the files we upload. An alternative that we will explore in this book is to host our files on online services and then link or embed (a concept we will see in a moment) these in Moodle. This will save server space for our school or institution, but can raise other questions such as blocked websites, bandwidth, or e-safety that we will see in this book. Another alternative is to use file formats that have good size/quality ratios, and we will learn how to select and use such file formats later on.