Sam's report

48 keen and eager 'Mahoodlers' attended this event at the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom's Heaviside Lecture Theater. The focus was on Digital Assessment and followed a format similar to the previous event held in Cambridge in October 2017. You can read all the tweets by following #mahoodle18

The day consisted of a wonderful keynote by Dr Mark Glynn (Dublin City University); 10 'Show and Tell' sessions that gave a glimpse into various institutions' assessment processes, activities and work in progress; a workshop (delivered by myself and Aurélie) that explored the development and assessment of an ePortfolio activity; and a lunchtime presentation by Joey Murison of Catalyst IT on the importance of community engagement, supporting open source, and the future plans of Moodle and Mahara.


Photo by Sam Taylor (Workshop in full swing!!!)

Scattered throughout the day were opportunities for attendees to mingle, with a special guided tour during lunch of the Technology School's Artillery and Focus areas 1 and 2, organised by Lt Col Jane Watt from the D-TEL team at the Defence Academy. Oh and hosts must have cake!

The day finally ended with a quick discussion about the types of issues we all have, and used Padlet to collect them all. Kristina Hoeppner (Catalyst) has kindly answered any questions that she could about Mahara (see PDF at the bottom of this report), however it has become apparent that there needs to be a 'forum' for Mahoodle discussions. Therefore I've set up a google group that you can join:!forum/mahoodle-uk

Regarding the recordings... we have some issues. Some recorded fine, some didn't at all, and some only recorded the speaker and not the slides. I am very sorry about this.

Massive thanks to Andrew Field for doing the Kahoot quiz session at the end of the day, such a great way to end a fantastic and lively event, and thank you to Lt Col Jane Watt and the Defence Academy for working with us on the logistics and enabling us to enjoy their fantastic new lecture and seminar room facilities.

Finally thanks to Aurélie for all her help and support with the administration and running of the event, and to all those who presented.

Sam Taylor


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Photos by Gill Ritchie

Our Mahoodle Keynote speaker:

Dr Mark Glynn, Dublin City University

Using Moodle and Mahara to promote academic integrity

Academic Integrity is an issue that affects us all. DCU is a partner in an Erasmus plus funded project led by Ilia State University in Georgia. The purpose of this project is to investigate the whole area of academic integrity and to investigate ways to address the challenge of this very relevant topic. This paper will highlight the opportunities available through both Moodle and Mahara, essentially taking a “prevention is better than cure” approach.

Mark's slides on SlideShare >

Show and Tell session 1:

Dr Aimée Helliker, Cranfield University

TEL implementation for enhancing student learning

I have been implementing various elements of TEL in my teaching and module support. I will be presenting the implementation of these and how they have benefited me as Lecturer/Module Leader/Course Director and the students we teach.

(Video kindly re-produced after the event by Aimée Helliker, Cranfield University)

Edd Bolton, Southampton Solent University

Looking at competency based frameworks and apprenticeships in Mahara

We are working with business degree apprenticeships, who are already using Mahara, and how we can support them with competency frameworks. Students are required to complete a portfolio showing proficiency in a number of areas. Tutors need to be able to sign off these competencies and an audit by the professional standard body need to be able to quickly see which standards have been met. We are looking at how we can develop a framework that would support this portfolio.

(Video kindly re-produced after the event by Edd Bolton, Southampton Solent University)

Mike Wadley and Lt Col Jane Watt, Defence Academy of the United Kingdom

The challenges of introducing digital assessment within the Ministry of Defence

Defence’s preferred Virtual Learning Environment is currently an interim capability called the Defence Learning Environment (DLE). We will share the constraints and aspects of our plan for moving forward to introduce a digital assessment tool within this environment.

(Slides attached)

Photo taken by Aurélie Soulier


Steve Powell, Lancaster University

From paper to screen: our experience of using Moodle to provide digital feedback for assessments

For many years, students have submitted their assignments online via Moodle for the majority of our modules, but up until recently feedback has still been provided on paper in most cases. The Institution has made a commitment to provide electronic feedback as standard, and in the last two years we have been working with academics and Moodle developers to provide the necessary functionality in Moodle so that the University can fulfill its ambition of providing our students with their feedback digitally. This is a brief description of what we have achieved and how we did it.


Bob Ridge-Stearn, Newman University, Birmingham

Moodle Turnitin Mahara

We have been using all three systems for almost ten years. I’ll describe our set up, how we have aimed at a standardised experience for users (students and staff), some of the benefits we have achieved and some of the challenges we still face.


Show and Tell session 2:

Richard Oelmann, University of Gloucestershire

Moving from Student Records to Moodle+ for assessments

At UoG we are undertaking a project to migrate student submissions from the Student Record system to Moodle, Mahara and eStream. This talk will be a brief look at the reasoning and process behind that as well as introducing some of the plugins we are planning to use to answer some of the staff queries during pilots.

Dan Jeffries, Improve International

4 Quick Wins to Make your Moodle Magic

Whether you’re experienced in online learning or just starting out, building courses in Moodle can be a challenge. How do you lay out content? How do you make it visually appealing? In this short talk, I’ll show you some useful tricks to making your site and course more vibrant, focusing on: Snippets, Buttons, User Tours and H5P.

(Slides attached)


Andrew Field, Cambridge Assessment International Education

Quick wins with rubrics, badges and a custom plugin

Sharing the results of a pilot programme making use of Moodle to support a formative assessment cycle, record group assessment with 11 year olds and record more formal written assessments with 13 year olds. Making use of Moodle to save teachers time and link into existing processes. Plugins used will be publicly available soon.

Gill Ritchie, Queen Mary University London

Now you get it, now you don't - using Mahara for assessment over the years

We've been using an e-portfolio (Mahara!) to assess our PGCAP module on teaching with learning technologies for a number of years now.  It's safe to say that it hasn't ever gone the same way twice. One year it clicks and we think we've cracked it. The next year everyone, including us, seems to struggle.  We'll share our highs and lows.

Brett Lucas and Rumi Begum, Queen Mary University London

Developing social and cultural capital with the ‘QMUL Model’

Queen Mary University of London has recently launched an ambitious new teaching and learning initiative to broaden opportunities for all its undergraduate students - It is called ‘The QMUL Model’. The Model involves a proportion of the undergraduate programme (approximately 10%) being given over to activities that help develop social and cultural capital. The timetable for delivery of these new model modules was very ambitious and the E-Learning Unit were tasked with developing a technology solution to support the delivery of the model. The solution developed incorporates development work in both Moodle and Mahara. In Mahara a bespoke Student dashboard has been built and several new plugins have been developed that may ultimately get incorporated into core including institutional tagging.

Portfolio Assessment Workshop

The mission:

Describe and design a portfolio activity that will allow students to demonstrate knowledge, skill, application and/or reflection on a topic/subject of your choosing.

(Slides and worksheet for workshop attached)


Photo by Katie Janota


Photo by Roger Emery


Mahoodle Clinic

Many thanks to Roger Emery for the talk about usergroups and community involvement.

If you'd like to join our Mahoodle UK user group Google group, then please go to!forum/mahoodle-uk and sign up!

(Padlet responses are attached)


Kahoot fun!

Many thanks to Andrew Field for organising this :)



Thank you to those who have given us feedback either via twitter, email, the feedback form (or combination). Lots of great suggestions for what to do next time, as well as ideas for what to include.

If you are interested in hosting the next one, a little birdy has told me the time around the end of November/beginning of December could be good if we wanted to invite a key Mahara supporter ;)

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Many thanks to Catalyst IT for sponsoring this event

Download the programme