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Digital Education team blog


Ideas and reflections from UCL's Digital Education team


Late Summer Assessments in Moodle – Summer 19/20

Jason R Norton10 June 2020

This summer (19/20) sees a repeat of the processes introduced last year with regards to the running of Late Summer Assessments.

A snapshot of Moodle 19/20 will be taken on 13th July 2020, 9pm-11pm. Moodle will be unavailable during this period.

Two live instances of Moodle will then be available:

  • Moodle LSA(snapshot) 19/20 – to be used ONLY for Late Summer Assessments. This will remain live until 30th November 2020.
  • Moodle 20/21.

Moodle use and Late Summer Assessments

To facilitate the combination of required end of year tasks and the running of Late Summer Assessments, all Late Summer Assessments should take place within the 19/20 Moodle Snapshot (called Moodle LSA 19/20).  This will be created on 13th July 2020 and made available no later than 15th July 2020.

Why are we asking you to follow this guidance?

  • All associated course content and student/cohort data will remain consistent and associated with the correct Moodle snapshot, in this case Moodle 19/20.
  • Completing Late Summer Assessments within the 19/20 snapshot allows all the “live” Moodle courses to be reset and normal end of year course activities to take place from 15th July 2020. Course teams will therefore be able to begin preparing courses for the 20/21 academic year.
  • Additional Moodle course creation is kept to a minimum within the Moodle 20/21 instance and aids in Moodle housekeeping activities (reducing dead/unwanted courses, improving long term database performance).

What are we doing to facilitate this change?

  • The Moodle 19/20 Snapshot will remain read/write until the 30th November 2020.
  • Digital Education will make a landing screen/hub available as we did last year with a two Moodle selection page to direct students to snapshot Moodle for Late Summer Assessments.
  • Digital Education will create a global banner within “live” Moodle directing students to the snapshot for the duration of the Late Summer Assessment period.
  • Digital Education will place other redirection adverts/links within “live” Moodle to highlight to students that Late Summer Assessment activities can be found within the 19/20 snapshot.

How can you prepare for Late Summer Assessments?

If you have Late Summer Assessments taking place and you wish to prepare assessment material/submission points in advance of the Moodle snapshot being taken on 13th July 2020, we recommend the following:

  • Within any course where Late Summer Assessments will be taking place, create a hidden section and place any material or submission points within that section. This can be done in Moodle 19/20 up until the 10th July 2020. Alternatively, it can be done within the 19/20 snapshot, which will be available by 15th July 2020.
  • When you are ready to make Late Summer Assessment material/submission points available, simply unhide the section within the course on the 19/20 snapshot.

Details on how to create and hide sections within Moodle can be found in the  miniguide – Moodle Course Structure .

A list of commonly asked questions about Late Summer Assessments is also available.

For any questions regarding Moodle and Late Summer Assessments please email digi-ed@ucl.ac.uk.

Moodle 19/20 Summer Snapshot

Jason R Norton10 June 2020

An annual snapshot of Moodle will be taken on 13th July 2020, 9pm-11pm (BST).  Moodle will be unavailable during the period.

The snapshot is a ‘point-in-time’ copy of UCL Moodle (http://moodle.ucl.ac.uk) taken for reference purposes. All records present on this date will be included in the snapshot.

Date  What is happening  Impact 
13th July 2020, 9pm-11pm (BST)
  • A snapshot of Moodle 19/20 will be taken 
  • Moodle will be unavailable from 9pm-11pm
  • Staff should limit any editing on courses that have ended for the 19/20 academic period until the snapshot is restored.  
15th July 2020 
  • Moodle Snapshot 19/20 will become available no later than 15th July 2020. 
  • Moodle will have a new landing page.
  • The Reset option will be enabled in Moodle 20/21. 
  • Moodle snapshot 19/20 will become available.  All late summer assessments for the academic year 19/20 should be completed here. 
  • Users logging into Moodle will be presented with a new landing page and will be able to select Moodle 19/20 (LSA) or Moodle 20/21. 
  • Staff will be able to start resetting their Moodle courses in preparation for the 20/21 academic year 
30th November 2020 
  • Moodle Snapshot 19/20 will become read only. 
  • No more edits on Moodle 19/20 can take place. 

Two Moodles over summer

This year will be the second year running that we have implemented and maintained two live instances of Moodle over the summer period. This is done to ensure the completion of Late Summer Assessments within the correct cohorts and courses and to enable course resets to take place. 

Once the Moodle Snapshot is made available, users visiting moodle.ucl.ac.uk  will be presented with a landing page and will be able to choose to log into either Moodle 19/20 (LSA Moodle) or Moodle 20/21. This landing page will only be active until 30th November 2020 when the snapshot will be come read only and be made available alongside other Moodle Snapshots. 

For full details on the use of these two Moodles and Late Summer Assessments please see Digital Education Late Summer Assessment Blog

Course resets and getting ready for the new academic year (available from 15th July 2020)

Once the 19/20 Snapshot of Moodle is made available (no later than 15th July 2020). The Moodle course Reset option will be enabled for all staff. Staff will be able to start resetting courses that have completed and are no longer in use This would not apply to Modules such as postgraduate, medical and other non-standard timetabled courses which do not conform to the normal academic cycle. 

The Moodle Course reset process changed slightly in summer 19/20.  For guidance and detailed steps, please see the wiki guide – Reset your Moodle course 

Once you have completed your course resets, please see the Moodle start or term checklist to ensure you are ready for the new academic year.

Note that the UCL e-Learning baseline has been updated.  Reference should now be made to the UCL Connected Learning Baseline when preparing courses for the 20/21 academic year. 

Staff should also refer to the Preparing for Connected Learning in 2020-21 web page. 

If you have any questions or require pedagogic or technical support in the use of Moodle in the support your of teaching and learning activities, please contact the Digital Education team via email at digi-ed@ucl.ac.uk