VLE Team report (15 Jan 2010 – 4 May 2010)


During this period there have been upgrades to both old and new WebLearn.

New WebLearn: New Facilities – The Highlights

  1. Better auto-generated passwords.
  2. Tasks, Tests and surveys now works properly for non site participants.
  3. Podcasts in non public sites can be accessed using Oxford SSO credentials.
  4. Automatically apply WebLearn styles to HTML pages created in Resources.

New WebLearn: Bug Fixes

  1. MyWorkspace calendar export now includes dates from a user’s active sites (so long as the calendars themselves have been exported by the site owner).
  2. Announcements made on a public site are now public by default.
  3. Email notifications are now sent when students submit Assignments.
  4. All Site Info tool have been un-hidden and locked (so they can’t be hidden again). This is so that users can always discover who to contact about a site.

Old WebLearn: New Facilities

  1. Improved exporting of content into a zip file.
  2. Improved export of MCQs to enable import into New WebLearn
  3. Ability to mark areas as migrated or archived.

Old WebLearn: Evaluations Tool Pilot

There are 56 individuals involved in the pilot, so far there have been 2 training courses and there’s one more coming up. The Evaluations tool has been well received but a few fairly minor bugs have been unearthed. The plan is to release it as a ‘Beta’ at the start of the summer (and rename it as the survey tool). The WL team has met with Jared Hutchings to talk about the role WebLearn can play in University-wide student surveys.

USG Skills Course Conversion

The WL team are currently moving the University Skills Group “Epigeum” (research skills courses) from Skills Portal / Moodle into new WebLearn. This will be completed by the start of next academic year.

Graduate Skills Courses Enrolment

The WebLearn team have been involved in discussions with the Director of IT and the 4 Academic Divisions to talk about implementing an on-line course enrolement system for Graduate Student ‘skills courses’.


The Fundamentals course is still being held every month, as is the Migration course; there will be 2 instances of the migration course before the long vac and a single session for ITSS. A lunch time session detailing the use of the Turnitin plagiarism detection service and its integration with WebLearn is run termly.

A second WebLearn ITLP course “WebLearn: Making Your Site Work” was piloted in HT and will be run termly.

“Learning and Teaching: using virtual environments “ is a newly developed course (in conjunction with OLI) and is run once a year at the start of Trinity.

Once more, the team has run a number of customised training sessions within departments and colleges, given numerous face-to-face tutorials, held a surgery at ITLP’s Computer8 every Friday morning in term time.

WebLearn User Group

This is held termly. The last meeting involved “Show and tell” presentations from a handful of WebLearn users and was attended by about 20 people. There are WLUGs every term – booking is via the OUCS ITLP ‘courses database’


Many colleges and departments have now moved their materials. The Test Building will be closed down on 21 June.

Progress has been made with tools for migration in both WebLearn systems. Tests can now be ported to new WebLearn and there are tools to show a summary of what material is owned. Virtually all the tools will be completed by the start of the Long Vac. The 2 outstanding issues will be the semi-automatic migration of surveys and the integration with OUCS’s new Oak Groups store.

Supporting New Students

The WL team have been working with a couple of colleges showing them how WebLearn can be used to support students after they have agreed agreed to study here but before they arrive.

OUCS Helpdesk

The WebLearn team have run 2 training sessions for the OUCS Helpdesk with the idea being that the Helpdesk take over ownership of the WebLearn RT queue. The final session will be held very soon at which point administration of the queue will be handed over.

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