The HTML Block

The HTML block in Moodle is one of my favorite and one of the most¬† underused features of Moodle.¬† This block allows you to add any HTML you’d like in a block on your site. You can have multiple blocks with different content. For example you could share links to library resources, such as Lib Guides, or use it to post office hours or TA contact information.

As an example here is a screen shot of an HTML block with information on office hours and a link to my Zoom personal Meeting room, library links and a link to a textbook for the course.



To get started turn editing on and find the Add Block menu.

(It is usually at the bottom left of the screen but may vary if you have a different theme active. )

When you choose HTML block you will get a blank block you can configure. Click the sprocket icon to edit the block. On the next screen you will see the standard editor where you can add your text, links and images. You can click the 4 pointed arrow to move the block to another location on your site.


Using Zoom in Moodle

If you want to use Zoom with your class you may want to use the Zoom tool in Moodle to make it easier for your students to join the meetings.

When you create a meeting in Moodle the students will see those meeting links right in Moodle. If you create the meeting using the Zoom webpage or App you will have to share the meeting information separately using email or a calendar invite. Using the Zoom tool saves you that extra step and makes finding the link easier for students so they don’t have to dig through emails.

To add the tool:

You will only need to add the Zoom tool once for each course in Moodle and all meetings scheduled for that class will be accessible via that same link.

First turn editing on and click the Add an activity or resource link in the section where you want to add the Zoom Meeting link. Choose External tool from the list of activities.

On the External Tool Settings page choose Zoom videoconferencing from the drop down menu.

Important note: adding this external tool will add a grade item to the Moodle Gradebook by default. To keep this from happening, clear the “Accept grades from the tool” tickbox under “Privacy, as illustrated here.

If you have already set up a Zoom meeting and it is in your Gradebook, but you do not want to have this item contribute towards your Gradebook total, then make sure to set Grade type as ‘none’ during this initial setup (see image at right). You will still see a Zoom item in the Gradebook, but it will be set for feedback only. If you’d prefer to remove the Gradebook item altogether, you can go back to the course page and edit the settings for the Zoom item.

When you’re done, at the bottom of the page, click save and return to course.

When you click the link to that tool from the content area you will see a screen that is similar to the Zoom web page. Click Schedule a New Meeting to schedule your meeting dates and times. You can create a recurring meeting for all your course meetings at once. See our Zoom documentation for more information on creating a meeting.

Once meetings are scheduled you will see them listed here. Next to the meeting you will see a link to Start the meeting. Students will see the link to join a meeting. If you need to edit the meeting settings you can click the meeting title then click Edit Meeting at the bottom of the page.

When you are in the Zoom tool you will also see a tab for cloud recordings. If you choose to record your class meetings to the cloud, which we highly recommend, you and the students will be able to see them here. Again this saves you the extra steps of getting the links from the Zoom web page and then sharing them with your students.

Creating and Using Groups

Creating groups in a Moodle site can be useful in a number of ways: You can create discussion areas for group projects, keep multiple sections of the same course separated, set different due dates for assignments based on group membership, and even create individual research logs by creating a group for each student. Continue reading “Creating and Using Groups”

Gradebook Weighting

The Moodle gradebook offers quite a bit of flexibility in setting up your grading method. There are numerous ways you can aggregate grades such as Mean of grades, Weighted mean of grades, and Natural. We suggest you review the calculations behind the aggregation methods before setting up your gradebook, as there is so much variety. Continue reading “Gradebook Weighting”

Creating a Kaltura Video Quiz

You can easily add questions to a video file using Kaltura and Moodle. You can determine at what point to pause the video and ask a question and set various quiz options.

To get started the video must be in your Kaltura Media Space. You can upload videos directly or you can copy clips from videos linked to your Moodle site into your own space, from a library course reserve for example. You can create the quiz either in Kaltura Media Space or in the Moodle Media Gallery for your course but we recommend starting the quiz in Media Space. Continue reading “Creating a Kaltura Video Quiz”