Skip to main content

Moodle Issue - Homework

I have experienced two issues with Moodle that annoy me. One is inconvenient, the other is truly frustrating.

The inconvenience doesn't surprise me: the full-featured editor and some dialogs do not function properly in Safari. Since I don't mind coding the HTML manually, this is okay, but for students wanting the "Word-like" editor I have to explain they need to use another browser on a Mac. It's definitely not unusual, since Blackboard behaved oddly via Safari.

The frustration was with assignments. If you select a "single file" assignment, you cannot return a copy of the file with comments. The problem for me, and probably other writing instructors, is that mark-up is part of the grading process. I like to return a paper with comments in the original file.

If you create an "Advanced Assignment" item you can return drafts, with certain requirements. But, not realizing I had to create an "Advanced Assignment" even for a single file if I wanted to return the paper with comments, I had created several items before class started.

Now, I have to delete assignments and recreate them before the due dates. A true pain that you cannot modify an existing assignment item or simply return files for a basic assignment.

The solution I settled on was to create a folder and upload the edited files into a specific folder. The students like this, but I found it slow and tedious.

Now that I know the limits with assignments, I'll be more careful.


Popular posts from this blog

Slowly Rebooting in 286 Mode

The lumbar radiculopathy, which sounds too much like "ridiculously" for me, hasn't faded completely. My left leg still cramps, tingles, and hurts with sharp pains. My mind remains cloudy, too, even as I stop taking painkillers for the back pain and a recent surgery.

Efforts to reboot and get back on track intellectually, physically, and emotionally are off to a slow, grinding start. It reminds me of an old 80286 PC, the infamously confused Intel CPU that wasn't sure what it was meant to be. And this was before the "SX" fiascos, which wedded 32-bit CPU cores with 16-bit connections. The 80286 was supposed to be able to multitask, but design flaws resulted in a first-generation that was useless to operating system vendors.

My back, my knees, my ankles are each making noises like those old computers.

If I haven't already lost you as a reader, the basic problem is that my mind cannot focus on one task for long without exhaustion and multitasking seems…

MarsEdit and Blogging

MarsEdit (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Mailing posts to blogs, a practice I adopted in 2005, allows a blogger like me to store copies of draft posts within email. If Blogger, WordPress, or the blogging platform of the moment crashes or for some other reason eats my posts, at least I have the original drafts of most entries. I find having such a nicely organized archive convenient — much easier than remembering to archive posts from Blogger or WordPress to my computer.

With this post, I am testing MarsEdit from Red Sweater Software based on recent reviews, including an overview on 9to5Mac.

Composing posts an email offers a fast way to prepare draft blogs, but the email does not always work well if you want to include basic formatting, images, and links to online resources. Submitting to Blogger via Apple Mail often produced complex HTML with unnecessary font and paragraph formatting styles. Problems with rich text led me to convert blog entries to plaintext in Apple Mail and then format th…

Screenwriting Applications

Screenplay sample, showing dialogue and action descriptions. "O.S."=off screen. Written in Final Draft. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) A lot of students and aspiring writers ask me if you "must" use Final Draft or Screenwriter to write a screenplay. No. Absolutely not, unless you are working on a production. In which case, they own or your earn enough for Final Draft or Screenwriter and whatever budget/scheduling apps the production team uses.

I have to say, after trying WriterDuet I would use it in a heartbeat for a small production company and definitely for any non-profit, educational projects. No question. The only reason not to use it is that you must have the exclusive rights to a script... and I don't have those in my work.

WriterDuet is probably best free or low-cost option I have tested. It is very interesting. Blows away Celtx. The Pro version with off-line editing is cheaper than Final Draft or Screenwriter.

The Pro edition is a standalone, offline versio…