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    MyFeedback is now available to all UCL staff and students

    By Jessica Gramp, on 17 October 2016

    The MyFeedback dashboard is now available to all UCL students and staff.

    MyFeedback is a new tool in UCL Moodle allowing students to view grades and feedback for any assessed work across all their Moodle courses, in one place. Personal Tutors can view the dashboard for each student to allow them to track progress and to help to inform discussions in personal tutorials.

    Watch the video on how students can use the MyFeedback report:

    The report helps students (supported by their personal tutors) to better understand the variety of feedback they receive, draw ties between different assessments and modules, and allow them to reflect on their feedback to see how they can improve in future assessments. It also allows module tutors and assessors and departmental administrators to see how their students are progressing within the modules they teach and support.

    MyFeedback Feedback Comments tab

    ^ Click the image to view a larger version of the Feedback Comments page.

    MyFeedback is available to students, personal tutors, course tutors and departmental administrators.

    • Students can view feedback and grades from their assessments across all their UCL Moodle course. They can also add self-reflective notes and copy & paste feedback from Turnitin into their report.
    • Personal tutors can see their tutees’ full MyFeedback reports across all the modules their students are studying. Note: personal tutors will not be able to link through to assessments on courses they do not have tutor access to.
    • Module tutors can see MyFeedback reports for their students containing assessment information for any modules they teach. They will not see any assessments for modules they do not teach (unless they have been granted tutor access to those Moodle courses).
    • Departmental administrators can see MyFeedback reports for all the Moodle courses within categories where they have been assigned departmental administrator access in Moodle. Categories in Moodle will either be for the entire  department, or might be broken down further into undergraduate and postgraduate modules. Staff requiring this access will need to ask their department’s current category level course administrator to assign them this role.

    Sign up to the Arena Exchange MyFeedback workshop on 28th November 2016 to learn how to use this tool with your students.

    You can navigate to your own MyFeedback reports via the MyFeedback block on the UCL Moodle home page.

    Other institutions can download the plugin from

    Find out more about MyFeedback…


    Authentic multimodal assessments

    By Mira Vogel, on 7 October 2016

    Cross-posted to the Connected Curriculum Fellows blog.

    My Connected Curriculum Fellowship project explores current practice with Connected Curriculum dimension 5 – ‘Students learn to produce outputs – assessments directed at an audience’. My emphasis is on assessing students’ digital (including digitised) multimodal outputs for an audience. What does ‘multimodal’ mean? Modes can be thought of as styles of communication –  register and voice, for example – while media and be thought of as its fabric. In practice, though, the line between the two is quite blurry (Kress, 2012). This work will look at multimodal assessment from the following angles.

    What kinds of digital multimodal outputs are students producing at UCL, and using which media? The theoretic specificity of verbal media, such as essay or talk, explains its dominance in academia. Some multimodal forms, such as documentaries, are recognised as (potentially) academic, while others are straightforwardly authentic, such as curation students producing online exhibitions. At the margins are works which bring dilemmas about academic validity, such as fan fiction submitted for the From Codex To Kindle module, or the Internet Cultures student who blogged as a dog.

    How are students supported to conceptualise their audiences? DePalma and Alexander (2015) observe that students who are used to writing for one or two academic markers may struggle with the complex notions of audience called for by an expanded range of rhetorical resources. The 2016 Making History convenor has pointed out that students admitted to UCL on strength of their essays may find the transition to multimodal assessment unsettling and question its validity.  I hope to explore tutor and student perspectives here with a focus on how the tasks are introduced to students. I will maintain awareness of the Liberating the Curriculum emphasis on diverse audiences. I will also explore matters of consent and intellectual property, and ask what happens to the outputs once the assessment is complete.

    What approaches are taken to assessing multimodal work? A 2006 survey (Anderson et al) reported several assessment challenges for markers, including separation of rhetorical from aesthetic effects, diversity of skills, technologies and interpretation, and balancing credit between effort and quality where the output may be unpolished. Adsanatham (2012) describes how his students generated more complex criteria than he could have alone, helping “enrich our ever-evolving understanding and learning of technology and literacies”. DePalma and Alexander (2015) discuss written commentaries or reflective pieces as companions to students’ multimodal submissions. Finding out about the practices of staff and students across UCL promises to illuminate possibilities, questions, contrasts and dilemmas.

    I plan to identify participants by drawing on my and colleagues’ networks, the Teaching and Learning Portal, and calls via appropriate channels. Building on previous work, I hope to collect screen-capture recordings, based on question prompts, in which students explain their work and tutors explain how they marked it. These kinds of recordings provide very rich data but, anticipating difficulties obtaining consent to publish these, I also plan to transcribe and analyse them using NVivo to produce a written report. I aim to produce a collection of examples of multimodal work, practical suggestions for managing the trickier areas of assessment, and ideas for supporting students in their activities. I will ask participants to validate these outputs.

    Would you like to get involved? Contact Mira Vogel.


    Adsanatham, C. 2012. Integrating Assessment and Instruction: Using Student-Generated Grading Criteria to Evaluate Multimodal Digital Projects. Computers and Composition 29(2): 152–174.

    Anderson, D., Atkins, A., Ball, C., et al. 2006. Integrating Multimodality into Composition Curricula: Survey Methodology and Results from a CCCC Research Grant. Composition Studies 34(2).

    DePalma, M.J., and Alexander, K.P. 2015. A Bag Full of Snakes: Negotiating the Challenges of Multimodal Composition. Computers and Composition 37: 182–200.

    Gunther, K. and Staffan Selander, S. 2012. Multimodal Design, Learning and Cultures of Recognition. The Internet and Higher Education 15(4): 265–268.

    Vogel, M., Kador, T., Smith, F., Potter, J. 2016. Considering new media in scholarly assessment. UCL Teaching and Learning Conference. 19 April 2016. Institute of Education, UCL, London, UK.;

    New digital learning opportunities now available

    By Caroline Norris, on 5 October 2016

    vintage typewriter literature reviewDigital Skills Development sessions

    New dates are now available for ISD Digital Skills Development courses for the first half of term.  For a full list of our courses and link to the booking system visit the student course catalogue or the staff course catalogue (you will need to follow a further link to get to the actual booking pages).

    New this term we have a lunchtime session on ‘Kick-starting your literature review’.  This is a demonstration session but you can bring your own device to install the software and follow along.  We also have a new SharePoint course for staff.  As usual we also offer a wide range of courses covering data analysis, programming, spreadsheets and much more.

    If you can’t find what you are looking for, we have a vast range of high-quality video-based courses available at  Visit the UCL page to find out more.  You can also come along to one of Digital Skills Development drop ins if you want more individual support.

    European Computer Driving Licence

    Our 2016 -17 ECDL programme for postgraduates is now open.  The European Computer Driving Licence is an internationally recognised IT qualification and is offered free each year to a limited number of students.  You will need to attend one of our orientation sessions, study independently online and then sit exams at our Wednesday afternoon testing sessions.  Visit our ECDL web pages to find out more and apply.  Note that we do offer a slightly different ECDL programme for staff as well for a small fee.  Details of the staff programme are also available on our web pages.

    ISD IT for IOE sessionsBowl of soup digital skills

    IT for IOE Training also offer a wide range of courses to both staff and students at their Bedford Way campus.  Visit their course bookings page for details.  There are a choice of mini demonstrations, mini workshops and full hands-on sessions in areas such as:

    • iPad apps, Prezi, WordPress for blogging, twitter for research, digital notebooks, mind mapping, screencasting and infographics
    • free online live polling and Q&A tools for presenting and teaching
    • Office 2013 and EndNote
    • Mac sessions looking at Keynote (alternative to PowerPoint) and Office 2016 applications

    Course Overview – Navigating Moodle 3.1

    By Domi C Sinclair, on 21 September 2016

    Over the summer we upgraded Moodle to the latest stable version, which brought a number of new feature, many of which you can read about in our Moodle Resource Centre wiki New Features section.

    One of the biggest changes, which has caused some concern, is the new Moodle Course Overview block which fills the centre of the My Home page in Moodle (what you see when you first log in).

    Therefore I’d like to take some time to explain a bit more about how this block works, you can also find some guidance from the external Moodle HQ in the Moodle Docs for Course overview block.

    As well as listing courses, as the My Courses block previously did, this new block also offers an overview of activities on your course which may need attention, including Moodle Assignments, Turnitin Assignments, SCORM packages and forums.  If these have pending activities then they will display a message saying ‘You have ‘x’ [activity name]s that need attention’.

    If you click where it says that it will expand to show details of what the activity is and what actions may be required:

    • For Moodle Assignments this notice should only show for students if there is a submission (or re-submission) required and for tutors/ course admins if grading is required.
    • With the Forum this notification will display until you have accessed the forum, and until you have logged out and then logged in again – so it will display until you next log in to Moodle.
    • For Turnitin and SCORM activities the notification is a little different, as it will always display the activity but by clicking it you can confirm if the required submission/ grading has taken place.

    Please note this lack of clarity in language and information displayed has been communicated to Moodle and we are watching their future releases to see when this will be made clearer.

    The Navigation block on the right-hand side still features a ‘My courses’ list, which shows all the courses you are enrolled on in a much more compact way. This may be a better navigation tool than the Course overview, which can be limited in how many courses it displays. Alternatively you might also want to use the search box located above the Course overview block.

    Hopefully this explains it a little better. If you still have any questions then please contact the ISD Service Desk.


    New features on

    By Caroline Norris, on 15 September 2016

    Those who use may have noticed already that there have been some changes to the user interface and some exciting new features have been added.  The next time you log on you will be asked ‘What do you want to accomplish on’ and guided through a range of options.


    Once you have chosen some goals, these will be included in the Recommended section of your personalised profile.  You can go back to My Goals (on the drop-down menu under your name) to change your choices at any time.


    Your home page has now been re-organised to make it more streamlined with courses you are currently watching (Continue Watching) and Your Playlist on the left and Popular Learning Paths and other highlighted courses on the right.  The courses section is now tabbed with New, Popular and Recommended sections.


    If you aren’t familiar yet with Learning Paths, these are sets of courses written by industry experts designed to teach you the knowledge and skills to pursue a particular career or work towards a particular certification.

    Finally, something to look forward to: there will soon be a ‘Popular at UCL‘ tab added so you will be able to see what other users here are enjoying!

    Check out the new features in…




    Remember to reset before adding new students.

    By Domi C Sinclair, on 14 September 2016

    As with previous years, now that the Moodle Snapshot has been taken, and the upgrade has been successfully performed, all Moodle courses that have completed their yearly cycle or are no longer in use need to be reset.


    Resetting is only for course which concludes prior to the 22nd July 2016 Snapshot. For any other courses please see our guidance on appropriate procedures.

    Why we need to do a course reset?

    Course resets are an essential part of the Moodle housekeeping process because they:-

    • Clear out old student data.
    • Remove students’ permissions from Moodle courses.
    • Remove student records from Moodle database.
    • Increase Moodle performance through database optimisation.
    • Keep our campus licensing agreements at the correct level.
    • Makes existing/current courses easier to manage and less prone to errors.

    What happens if we do not do course resets?

    • We build up dead data in the live database which still has to be queried by the system which in turn impacts upon Moodle’s performance.
    • We have to count these expired students against our Licensing for systems such as Turnitin, which increase our costs.

    But how do I do a course reset?

    Instructions on how to do a reset are located here


    During the upgrade process all Portico mappings in Moodle were de-activated. This was to ensure that no students are accidentally unenrolled when the Portico team implement the new enrolment data for the 2016-17 academic year.

    If you wish to keep existing students on a Moodle course (for example masters course, courses with an end date after 22nd July) then please DO NOT reactivate the Portico mappings.

    If you are resetting your course for the 2016-17 academic year, and all required data is saved in the Moodle Snapshot ( then please remember to re-activate Portico mappings.

    You can find out more about the Portico enrolment block on the Moodle Resource Centre wiki:

    The Moodle Snapshot (previously called archive)

    For anyone worried about a loss of historical data, please remember on the 22nd July 2016 we took the Moodle annual snapshot. This snapshot is a point in time capture of Moodle including all the student data, that is set in a read only mode for you to access as required as a separate instance from live Moodle (previous instances are located here

    My Course requires a reset at a different period of the year. What do I do?

    For those courses such as postgraduate, medical and other non-standard timetabled courses and modules please see the following guidance page.

    We greatly appreciate you help in this activity any questions please contact the ISD Service Desk (