Posts Tagged ‘metacourses’

How teachers can include a link to their metacourse content in their Moodle course

  1. How teachers get the metacourse link:
    1. image
    2. Find your metacourse and expand (1).
    3. find your resource (the textbook is actually “Voilà”, but we want to make extra sure there are no non-ASCII compatibility issues) and right-click (2).
    4. Click “copy link location” (3).
  2. How to use the metacourse link in your actual course:
    1. image
    2. You can e.g. start a new topic (0).
    3. Add title (1).
    4. Add text (2).
    5. Add link to text (3).
    6. Paste link from clipboard. (4)
    7. I you choose open in new window (5), following the link will not navigate the student away from your actual course in the main web browser window.
  3. Result: image Caveats:
    1. FireFox opens in a new tab, even if you in Moodle request to open in a new window.
    2. You can only link to the root folder of a Moodle Metacourse. If there are multiple content sets within your textbook folder, please advise your student of the name.

LRC learning resources Moodle metacourses: Our list

2013/01/18 1 comment

UPDATE: The LRC Metacourses are being rolled over to MOODLE2. Metacourses having only an OldID are currently still unavailable in Moodle2. And the student enrollment needs to be updated manually until the end of add/drop. On the upside, teachers do not need to make course available to students anymore. The LRC can do this (Metacourses for languages saying #Ref are waiting to be rolled over, tell me if you need them)..

The following LRC Moodle metacourses for teaching materials are available to LCS and ELTI  (including LRC-Resource  with training materials for using language learning technology in and outside of the LRC, as well as for independent study languages).

The naming scheme follows the course abbreviations taught in the departments that the LRC supports:

These courses appear in the Training branch of the Moodle-courses tree-menu on the left (for all study programs you teach in):


The metacourse for a language (or field of study)  is accessible to all students studying this language during the term of their study.

LRC online language learning materials: the list

2013/01/17 2 comments

Below you can find a scrollable and searchable list of LRC learning materials in Moodle metacourses  (of which you can find a standalone list here).

You can filter this LRC Excel Web App using the column header dropdowns. You can click on the language in the leftmost column to go to your language’s metacourses and in its folders easily locate the resources in the right columns.

Languages that do not have their dedicated metacourse are LCTL/independent study and can be found in the LRC metacourse.

Note that the material you are looking for are not necessarily in this list, as there are other containers for language learning materials used on campus, including individual Moodle courses, textbook publisher applications, often based on Quia, like for Hybrid 1st-year Spanish, and the library ereserves.

Larger view here. UNCC-LRC Editors click here.


How to link your LRC tutor calendar and Moodle metacourse from your Moodle course

How to more easily (student permissions, term recycle) distribute learning materials using Moodle metacourses

Problem: Audio CDs are an outdated medium, file shares and web drive interfaces to them are unfamiliar to both students and teachers and difficult to browse. Moodle, the familiar learning environment, by default, requires teachers to manage textbook audio and other learning materials within each Moodle course = section times term. This leads to a lot of duplication, both in effort and storage.

Solution: Moodle Metacourses can serve, maybe not as a solution (only a poor man’s eRepository), but as  a workaround. Read here, how:

Moodle metacourses, part I: The Pedagogy: Do you want the LRC to distribute files for
your courses through Moodle?

Moodle metacourses, part II: The technology

Moodle Metacourses, part III: The  support workflow: File-renaming

Moodle Metacourses, part IV: The support workflow: Transcoding audio learning materials

Moodle metacourses, part V: The support workflow: Uploading

LRC learning resources Moodle metacourses: Our list

LRC online language learning materials: the list

Moodle Metacourses, part III: The support workflow: File-renaming

2011/08/31 2 comments

We discussed file renaming utilities in an earlier post. Here are some more practical tips:

Limitations: While both utilities can accept Windows Search Result sets, drag-drop seems limited to fewer than 256 files at a time (on my Vista 64-bit – but that is not an OS limitation, since MS Expression Encoder can accept a drag-and-drop of all over 3.5k files that need reencoding).

Workaround: both utilities have a folder-select, and Renamer in addition accepts file masks, which can mimic some basic searches:


Bulk Rename Issue: While it allows for “Select from Clipboard” which you can use with the Windows “Copy as Path”/”Send  to Clipboard as Name” feature which works with search result sets. However, I could not get this feature to work (neither with the default “” around the path nor, after removing them manually,  without).

Renamer, Issue: rule, clean up, strip-out-content-of-brackets-does-not-what-it-should:

Renamer-translit-anglicize-foreign-language-diacritics: unfortunately still recommended for technical reasons; Renamer has presets, e.g. German here: TBA

Only one preset can be inserted add a time (overwrites previous) – but you can build your list with copy/paste from/to this text box and persist it to disk to load it later, just like the search rules – an extremely handy feature.

Moodle Metacourses, part IV: The support workflow: Transcoding audio learning materials

2011/08/31 1 comment

The MS-WMA-Voice codec features very acceptable audio quality for spoken language learning materials in a highly compressed format. It allowed me to reduce  our existing audio files collection size by about 50%.

Expression Encoder 3 crashed a few times during encoding this queue of 3.500 audio files. In addition, it took a long time to reload the .XEJ project files of such a size. It is, however, easy enough to inspect the XEJ in an XML editor:


And even easier to delete the finished media files form the queue using a text editor:expression-project-xml-textpad

I am wondering whether this queuing could be streamlined (recovery automated, and the need for human interaction be reduced) using the PowerShell Module for Automating Expression-Encoder, but so far the process is good enough.

Moodle metacourses, part I: The Pedagogy: Do you want the LRC to distribute files for your courses through Moodle?

2011/08/18 1 comment

First consider using the Library ereserves! However, to help teachers with the management of digital learning materials (text, audio, small video files) in your Moodle courses, to help students with a familiar learning interface (unlike Webdrive), and to relieve IT from having to store files in sparse environments like network shares or to manage duplicate files from many similar Moodle sections/courses across terms, the LRC is introducing Moodle metacourses.

In many Moodle installations, such metacourses – while lacking the advanced features of an LMS-integrated eRepository (software options are still under exploration) -, are commonly used like a shared library, holding teaching materials which a number of courses need access to and which the teacher of these course can link materials from in their respective courses.

You can view both a short list of our LRC Moodle metacourses and a longer list of language learning materials in these resource Moodle courses.

The CTL has arranged for all [your language here, e.g. French] Moodle courses to automatically become “child courses” (don’t get hung up on that terminology!) of the “LRC-[your language here]-Resource” Moodle course (AKA “parent course”) course at the beginning of each term. That means: all teachers and students in [your language here] courses will have access to the learning materials in “LRC-[your language here]-Resource” course. (At the end of the term, all teachers and students will be automatically un-enrolled also).

Please note: Due to technical limitations within Moodle, with you gaining access, the LRC staff loses access to the “LRC-[your language here]-Resource” course. However, if you want to make changes, you can yourself go to the parent course and manage either your child course (dropping) or individual resources in the parent course (hiding – please coordinate with colleagues, especially teachers of other sections).

Please note also: Like any library (or specifically the LRC) is a room, the metacourse is a (virtual) room, meaning: students must (virtually) “walk over there” to see the library resources. You can facilitate this if you link to library resources in the parent course from your regular course, preferably opening them in a new window for easy return to the regular course.

How is included in these helpful hints from a metacourses user: “The only minor problem is that the student navigation might leave them in the metacourse instead of the normal section course. To lessen this effect, I always launch links to the metacourse in a new window. Normally students understand that they need to close the popup window when they are finished with it. There are several advantages to using metacourses in this way. First, it saves having to upload the same materials more than once. I can change a file in the metacourse and know that it is changed in all section courses. Second, it saves storage space. Third, it provides the possibility of developing learning objects or mini courses that can be quickly linked to create a new course. Finally, it would allows several teachers to pick and choose what materials to include in their section courses. One hint, I put all activities (assignments, forums, journals, etc.) in the child course, not in the metacourse. This keeps grading segregated” .

Alternatively, if you do not want to distribute files through the parent course and rather drop your child course from the parent course, self-enrolling in the LRC-CLS-UNCC-Projects (URL sent on request) which as a child course of all metacourses will give you access to download the teaching materials (How? view how to use Moodle File management to zip and download files) and republish them into your Moodle course ((How? view how to upload files into Moodle).