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Surry Online (powered by Moodle):

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1 Surry Online (powered by Moodle):
Moving to Moodle: One College’s Approach Dr. Candace Ring Helen Dollyhite Distance Surry Community College

2 …a bit of history In 1998, Surry Community College adopted Blackboard 4 as its official course management system (CMS). Many faculty are happy with Blackboard, but found that information got lost due to having to “drill down” to find information. Aug. 2006: In conjunction with NCCCS, Surry participates in the Moodle pilot project,, for UNC and NC community colleges provided by Bill Randall of the NCCCS.

3 …a bit of history Spring 2008: 40 faculty members attend “hands-on” workshop opportunities. Surry contracts with Remote-Learner for hosted Moodle instance, branded ‘Surry Online.’ Summer 2008: 10 faculty participate in pilot project , committing to teach a course in Moodle in Summer Early Childhood courses phased over to Moodle. Fall 2008: Surry Online offers 20 courses on Moodle, with 65 in Blackboard 7.3. Training/migration continues. Spring 2009: 50 active courses with 1000 active users. Training/migration continues. Fall 2010: Migration is complete. All courses converted and taught on Moodle.

4 …(perceived) pros and cons
Commercial Open Source Stable(ish) Scalable Supported/”someone to sue” Documentation/Training Perception of “safety & stability” Turn-key solutions Lack of customization Mandated patches/upgrades Proprietary content Prohibitive cost Customizable Upgrade/Versioning autonomy Faster integration of new technologies Open standards Integration with other services NCCCS/corporate/homeschool tie-in Substantial cost savings Loss of some functionality Fears of instability & scalability Lack of support/”someone to blame” Hidden costs – hosting, support, new hires? Requires developers, programmers

5 …expectations management
Facing the fears: Loss of functionality (esp. gradebook, selective release) Migration (“…you mean I have to start over?!?) Training & Support Integration Getting “Buy In” From Faculty Brought in people who had migrated to Moodle to conduct initial training. Faculty has positive attitude toward change Faculty like flexibility of features Faculty like student reporting and data features

6 Key to Success: Support Faculty & Students
…training & support Key to Success: Support Faculty & Students Candace Ring and Helen Dollyhite conduct workshops, provide training materials and technical support to faculty Provide technical support to students In the process of creating online training option for faculty and student orientation Developing technical support website

7 …training & support Surry now conducts monthly workshops for full and part time faculty Includes one-on-one option Divisional sessions Campus-wide sessions Day & evening training options Open source downside: No one else to call. No one else to blame. Hosting services like MoodleRooms, Optimized Learning, and Remote-Learner can help ease the transition and provide admin support.

8 …integration Working on integration with Datatel through Open Source Collaborative The “community model” saves the day! Similar solutions in place for Datatel (CPCC) freely gives Datatel integration scripts to colleges who ask Guildford Technical CC has auditing report South Piedmont CC has “block student” authentication The forums host a vibrant community of users/ admins/developers, all of whom believe in the open source model

9 …timeline Moodle 16 live courses Complete migration & training
Moodle “official” CMS Blackboard no longer available Moodle 16 live courses 16 faculty/ 320 users Bring Con Ed aboard -10 courses Blackboard support continues Blackboard training as requested Spring08/Summer Fall Spring 09 /Fall Fall 2010 Continue migration & training 50 courses/1500 users Add 4 more Con Ed courses Blackboard support continues Develop training material Conduct workshop series Teach Moodle 10 courses Blackboard support continues

10 …migration Faculty migration needs are diverse Migration tools
“I just want my files.” “I have 2800 questions in a database, and 25 quizzes.” “Can’t you just move my entire course? All I’ve posted is a syllabus.” Migration tools Zip/Unzip bFree Respondus IMS_QTI personality LSU’s Blackboard Moodle Conversion Tool

11 Blackboard Moodle Resources Assignments Quizzes Glossary
mapping Blackboard to Moodle Blackboard Course Documents Course Information Assignments Discussion Board Tests Glossary Announcements Moodle Resources Assignments Quizzes Glossary Label or Forum

12 …administration LAMP experience is good Tools
Linux Apache MySQL PHP (in this case) Tools cPanel phpMyAdmin dir layout is logical, if you like SSH and command line Has required some professional development on our parts Learning new skills = always a good thing Having to solve the problem yourself = always a strong motivator Larger community = more shared solutions A “we can make this work” attitude = indispensable

13 Questions? Dr. Candace Ring Surry Community College
Phone: Helen Dollyhite Phone:

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