Developed by an extremely active open source community, Moodle is a sophisticated course management system that's ideal for creating dynamic online learning communities
and for supplementing face-to-face learning. Used in more than 115 countries and supporting over 60 languages, Moodle can scale from a single-teacher site to a 40,000-
Teachers who use Moodle have access to an array of powerful tools such as assignments, forums, journals, quizzes, surveys, chat rooms, and workshops. Using Moodle is a comprehensive, hands-on guide that explains how the system works, with plenty of examples and best practices for its many features and plug-in modules. Authored by a member of the Moodle community, this authoritative book also exposes little-known but powerful hacks for more technically savvy users. For anyone who is using-or thinking of using-this CMS, Using Moodle is required reading.
Jason Cole is currently the academic technology manager at San Francisco State University, where he's responsible for managing a Blackboard implementation that has over 15,000 users. A member of the Moodle community, he has developed a student data integration tool for the system, and contributed to discussions regarding a document management system and object model for version 2.0. Jason earned a Ph.D. in educational technology from the University of Northern Colorado.
Technology that Teaches: Jason Cole's Using Moodle""
By Jim Farmer
Comments about oreilly Using Moodle:
In Chapters 2 through 13 Jason Cole describes how to use Moodle from installation through creating various types of courses. The easy to follow text with illustrations describe, step by step, how to achieve a working system. Chapter 1 sets the context. Cole writes [Moodle creator] "Martin's background led him to adopt social constructionism as a core theory behind Moodle." And comments "Most [course management systems] have been built around tools, not pedagogy. I would call most commercial CMS Systems tool- centered while Moodle is learning-centered." This captures the reason for Moodle's overwhelming adoption by college and university faculty and K-12 school teachers, Moodle is designed to teach, and does it well. Chapter 15 "Putting It All Together" summarizes course design patterns for introductory survey, skills development, theory/discussion, and capstone courses, a chapter that every education graduate should be able to write. These patterns make the difference between "teaching as we were taught" and "teaching as we should be taught."
A learning system "by educators for educators" continuously being improved by some very-savvy PHP developers. Cole describes their work well and argues the learning theory underlying the design has made powerful education technology, more than just a "cool" architecture.