We are excited to announce that our Moodle Learning Management platform has now been upgraded to Moodle 4.1! The previous version was 3.11, so this upgrade is quite a significant improvement from your previous versions providing you with a new theme, menu layouts for navigation and features with a key focus on accessibility and user experience to maximise learning.
What is going to change?
The new Moodle will look slightly different from your previous version, but most of the core functionalities will remain much the same. Below are some of the key improvements and new functionalities you will immediately notice when starting to use Moodle after the upgrade in the summer.
- Login page: The login page to Moodle will now have a image slider with important announcements and a Log in link on the top right of the page.
- You will be taken to the Moodle dashboard page after you login. We strongly advice you to take the User tour when prompted for you to quickly get accustomed to the new Moodle layout.
- User Interface overview: You will find a simplified user interface with easy access to navigation menus to access your modules, user menu, dockable course index within each module and blocks throughout the Moodle site.
- Dashboard page: In 4.1, the dashboard page could be personalised by turning the Edit mode on the top-right of the page to reorganise the layout of your page.
You can also search for a module/browse all modules or access your Calendar from the Dashboard page.
Students can turn the Edit mode on and click Add a block
to add the following blocks to their dashboard page.
- My Modules page: You will need to click on the My Modules page to access your enrolled modules in Moodle.
Please note, the most recently accessed modules will be shown in the dashboard page.
Accessibility toolbar: In the new version, you will have an option to enable the Accessibility toolbar to display for you at the top of your Moodle site to change the font type, increase/decrease font size, 3 different text contrast types and screen modes to help you with the accessibility of your Moodle site.
Dyslexic Fonts: You can set your Moodle site to a dyslexic font as some students prefer these fonts to help with reading the pages.
The dyslexic font letters use thicker lines in parts of letters and the letters are slanted a bit for those letters that have sticks and tails (b, a, and p) vary in length to improve readability.
Dark mode: You can now use a dark mode option which will help to reduce the light emitted by the device screens to reduce eye strain at night, cuts glare, screen headaches and boosts sleep.
- Moodle home page – The navigation has slightly changed on how you access your content.
In Moodle 4.1, you will access the dashboard and your modules using the tabbed navigation bar in the header of your Moodle page. You can access your enrolled courses by clicking the ‘My Modules’ tab.
In 3.11, you will access them using a single drop-down menu.
- Module page – accessing your module page settings
In 4.1, the Participants, Settings and Grade options are shown in a tabbed menu layout in the top of your module page. The Participants tab has the options to enrol users, permissions and groups. The More drop-down menu include question bank and course reset options such as import, course backup, restore and reset options.
In 3.11, you will access your module options via the Course Management cog wheel drop-down menu.
- Course index menu (dockable) – you will find a new dockable navigation menu to quickly access course sections, activities and resources. If completion tracking is enabled, a green light will be visible to students next to the activity on the course index menu for completed activities. The location highlights in the course index when moved up and down the central course area is helpful to know your exact location in your module. Any indentation in the activity on the course page is also shown in the course index menu.
- Block drawer (dockable) – The blocks which used to be shown on the right-hand column are now hidden in a dockable menu to help students focus on the central course content area. If you have lot of content in blocks, you might want to reconsider how to show key featured content.
- Module navigation – The module navigation from one activity to the next is made much easier with the ability to click on the next activity link, helping students to keep focus on the learning content. A breadcrumb trail links is shown within each page to navigate back to the main module page.
- The Edit mode: In 4.1, the Edit mode has changed from a button to a toggle switch. All users with editing roles will now see the edit button located on the top-right of their module page.
In 3.11 the Edit mode is a button indicated by a Pencil icon at the top of the module page.
- Adding blocks: In 4.1, you have an option to add the blocks to the top-drawer (not dockable) or to the right-side block drawer (dockable).
In 3.11 the top block drawer is collapsible and the right-side block drawer is fixed.
- Adding activity and resources: In 4.1, you can add activities and resources by clicking the big Add an activity or resource button.
In 3.11, the link to add an activity or resource is quite small.
- Add new sections: In 4.1, you can add a new topic section at the end of each section instead of scrolling to the bottom of the course page if you use the topics or weeks format. Note, this option is not available if you use the collapsible topics format.
In 3.11, you will need to scroll to the bottom of the page or access the course settings to add or remove a new section.
- Moving activity between sections: In 4.1, you can quickly move an activity or resource from one topic section to another location in your module page by clicking and dragging the activity and dropping in the desired location of your choice using the sidebar/course index menu.
Moving an activity via the course index menu.
You also have the option to move an activity to another location in the course by dragging and dropping an activity from the course main page on to the left course index menu.
In 3.11, you can move activities only from the main course area as there is no course index menu.
- You will notice a few changes in the terminology between the previous and the new versions for labels and HTML blocks.
In 4.1, label is now called as Text and media area and the HTML block is called as Text block.
- The user tours are available in the footer of your site home page and your module pages to help you quickly orientate yourself with the new Moodle layout. We strongly recommend you to take the user tour when prompted when you first login and take them as many times until you get familiar with the new layout. You can click the ‘Reset user tour on this page’ to trigger the user tour again.
We have put together some example modules in our demo Moodle site for you to get accustomed to the new Moodle 4.1 user interface and navigation changes.
- You can access the demo Moodle 4.1 site from the below link.
- Click an example module for your department to access it as an editing teacher
If you have any questions or feedback on the Moodle theme and functionalities please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.