Wednesday, 15 October 2014

10(ish) Top Tips for MOLE

A colleague of mine here in CiCS, who didn't know a great deal about MOLE and what you can do in it,  asked me if I could give her some ideas about what could be achieved, so I ran through ten top tips with her. She wrote them up, so I asked her if I could put them on here. Of course, she said yes :)

Engage your Students with New Improved MOLE

Photo by Chris Metcalf
on a CC BY 2.0 license
 Now that MOLE is hosted and supported by its suppliers in Amsterdam we can expect a faster, more reliable user experience for all. So there’s never been a better time to explore the full features of MOLE to further engage your students with a diverse online learning experience. Here are 10 features that we think make MOLE such an exciting virtual learning environment.

Mash it Up!

 Using rich content you can enhance your learning modules, assignments and submissions. Using the mashup tool you can add Flickr photos, myEcho, a slideshare presentation or a YouTube video, plus you can embed interactive SCORM modules.  MOLE structures content in a way that gives a pathway through the content with its own navigation menu. If you structure and put effort into your content you can add depth and a richer experience for users. The powerful text editor gives you word processing type controls and you can even export content from one course to another.

Video Everywhere

The Video Everywhere tool is built into the text editor and allows easy recording of video from a webcam or embedding of YouTube videos into the course.

Flip that Classroom!

The traditional way students are taught is a student goes to a lecture and the lecturer lectures. The flipped classroom turns this around as the homework is carried out before the teaching. The lecturer can then offer more personalised guidance and interaction with their students, instead of lecturing. This blended learning approach is achieved easily in MOLE.


Giving recognition for achievement is possible in MOLE as you can use the achievements tool to create opportunities for students to earn recognition for their work. You can designate criteria for issuing achievements through badges and certificates. The tool also allows you to monitor the student’s progression throughout a piece of work.

Get Social!

The social learning tools available in MOLE, particularly blogs and wikis, help students create a Facebook-like site within the learning environment. Reflective practice, group and individual work can be used to build content alongside charting student progression. You can easily facilitate group work giving you the ability to group students and release content specifically to those individual groups. Each group can hold online discussions through the Discussion Board and you can create blogs or wikis for members of a group to use.

Peer Pleasure!

There are multiple ways of using peer assessment and peer review although there is no formal peer marking tool that allows a student to mark another students work. Structuring content using blogs, wikis and discussion groups enables students to mark another student’s work by making comments and leaving feedback.

Online Submission

Electronic submission and feedback has many advantages for both students and lecturers. It can simplify and speed up the assessment and feedback process; opens up opportunities to use tools that can add value to the assessment process; assignments can be set up in MOLE or Turnitin; and assignments, feedback and marks can be archived for future reference.

Online Assessment

The powerful and comprehensive online assessment tool allows formative and summative testing from quizzes to online invigilated exams.  The question content can include audio, video and photos and the question choice is varied and wide-ranging. New assessment tools are also being developed.

Time to Think

Students can use the reflective practice tool to create a journal to collect observations, thoughts, concerns, notes, progress, and opinions that they can keep private. You can be invited to leave comments and feedback and it works exactly the same as a blog.  Using reflective practice can build a rapport between instructors and students, contributing to a positive learning

If you’re new to MOLE, the name means My Online Learning Environment and it is the University’s virtual learning environment.  One big advantage of using MOLE is it is hosted on secure servers, students are already using the site, data is secure, backed up and archived. Students can access materials 24/7 and there are over 25 tools to engage students in active learning and provide them with the best learning experience possible.

If you need any help at all getting started with MOLE or using its advanced features come and talk to us. The TEL TEam are a dedicated team of learning technologists who are experts in using MOLE and other learning technologies, and who work with a University-wide community of teaching staff and elearning champions to use the advanced features in MOLE to produce innovative and engaging online content.

Just as a footnote, I know there aren't ten tips here, only nine... it seems counting isn't my strong point!

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