Is Moodle Causing Stagnation in Education?

A couple years ago I helped implement Moodle at my school in Chennai, India.  In 2012, they decided to transition from a god-awful Sharepoint site to Moodle for their LMS, Learning Management System.

This was a great decision back then and to implement the plan I had to dive into Moodle.  To teach myself this new system, I watched countless youtube movies and just clicked around until I was familiar with most of its many features.  The thing is that Moodle easily gets confusing because there is too much functionality.  When I gave my weekly Moodle PD sessions, the teachers would groan and roll their eyes… saying “God why do we have to learn this.”

Moodle has a big learning curve.  Most teachers just don’t have enough time to really discover its potential uses.  They are too busy coming up with creative lessons to spend hours editing their Moodle courses.  It’s clunky, it doesn’t always work perfectly and most school Moodle sites are pretty ugly.  And despite being such a versatile tool, I think it leads to stagnation of content and instruction.

To get teachers to use Moodle, it has to be a mandatory requirement.  Most teachers would not use Moodle if they had a choice.  It just takes too much time to learn and build courses.  But once a teacher builds a course, it’s there for years to come.  Teachers put so much effort into putting their material on Moodle and creating quizzes, that they rarely ever want to go back in a modify it.

I believe that successful teaching and learning needs to be dynamic.  For me it’s a continual work in progress as I tweak lessons, update material and personalize my course to the needs of my students.

When comparing Learning Management Systems, Google Classroom supports contemporary learning much better than Moodle.  You build your course as you go in Google Classroom, allowing a better opportunity to personalize your course.  You can reuse old posts from previous courses in Google Classroom, but just going through and choosing those old posts will help you decided what you should keep and what to change.