Moodle is a software package for producing Internet-based courses and web sites. It is a global development project designed to support a social constructionist framework of education.
Moodle is provided freely as Open Source software (under the GNU Public License). Basically this means Moodle is copyrighted, but that you have additional freedoms. You are allowed to copy, use and modify Moodle provided that you agree to: provide the source to others; not modify or remove the original license and copyrights, and apply this same license to any derivative work. Read the license for full details and please contact the copyright holder directly if you have any questions.
Moodle can be run on Windows and Mac operating systems and many flavors of linux (for example Red Hat or Debian GNU). There are many knowledgeable Moodle Partners to assist you, even host your Moodle site. The word Moodle was originally an acronym for Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment, which is mostly useful to programmers and education theorists. It’s also a verb that describes the process of lazily meandering through something, doing things as it occurs to you to do them, an enjoyable tinkering that often leads to insight and creativity. As such it applies both to the way Moodle was developed, and to the way a student or teacher might approach studying or teaching an online course. Anyone who uses Moodle is a Moodler.
There are many dimensions to interoperability for e-learning systems. Moodle’s interoperability features include:
- Authentication, using LDAP, Shibboleth, or various other standard methods (e.g. IMAP)
- Enrollment, using IMS Enterprise among other standard methods, or by direct interaction with an external database
- Quizzes and quiz questions, allowing import/export in a number of formats: GIFT (moodle’s own format), IMS QTI, XML and XHTML (NB although export works very well, import is currently not complete). Moodle provides various types of questions – Calculated, Description, Essay, Matching, Embedded Answers, Multiple Choice, Short Answer, Numerical, Random Short-Answer Matching, True/False.
- Resources, using IMS Content Packaging, SCORM, AICC (CBT), LAMS
- Integration with other Content Management Systems such as Postnuke (via third-party extensions)
- Syndication, using RSS or Atom newsfeeds – external newsfeeds can be displayed in a course, and forums, blogs, and other features can be made available to others as newsfeeds.