Developer Standards

Below are some of WCLN's standard settings for putting new resources and activities into Moodle. 

Text Fonts:

We have had a lot of creative lesson building in the past.  As we work towards improved quality and consistency, please follow the following:

  • in general, books should hold 3-10 lessons
  • in general, lessons should be about a screen size (not overly small or big).   Avoid lessons that require excessive scrolling (overwhelming).  
  • please don't specify font size or family unless absolutely needed (improves general accessibility)
  • if you choose to bold "key words," that's fine, don't use various colors and/or underlines and/or highlight colors
  • if you choose a different color for examples (eg. Example 1:), keep consistent throughout course
  • sometimes <hr> tags (line) are nice to separate sections or items.
  • don't over-format, as different browsers and/or screen sizes will mess with this anyway
  • if you copy from WORD, please do some clean-up (button or HTML mode)

Embedding Videos:

When you embed a video into a lesson, here's how to do it.

<p align="center"><iframe src="" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="360" width="640" longdesc="examples of volcanism"></iframe></p>

  • align="center"  ensures the video is centered on the lesson
  • ?rel=0 ensures that a bunch of "recommended videos" don't show-up at end
  • width = 640 is a nice size for a typical screen, generally good not to go wider
  • height = 360 complements the 640 height for typical videos, but just set it to keep proportions
  • longdesc = a description in case the video becomes unavailable.

Question Database:

To ensure quality and consistency in our question databases, the following rules are followed.

D2L Compatibility:

  • Always build questions in the Questionbanks THEN add to quiz (don't build in quiz).
  • Avoid matching questions, particularly those using extra distractors (D2L doesn't support this).
  • Avoid "multiple select" questions (as they don't load properly in D2L).
  • Avoid "include subcategories" (as D2L doesn't yet support this).

QuestionBank Organization:

  • categories are organized by lesson, then level
  • each question has a unique name (this helps us track problems)
  • question names should not be crazy long (hard to search)
  • for equations, use text where possible, then WIRIS / MathML as needed.
  • don't use WIRIS to make division questions with "long division symbol"

Course Settings:

I've laid these instructions in the "Step" order to allow completion tracking settings to be available in the quizzes and assignments before you get there.

STEP 1:  Completion Tracking Set-up

STEP 2:  Quiz and Exam Settings

STEP 3:  Assignment Settings

STEP 4:  Grade Book Settings

STEP 5:  Rubric Settings

Learning Guides:

To ensure quality and consistency in our question databases, the following rules are followed.

    • include both .docx and .pdf files named exactly the same for /LOR
    • don't combine images on a page with text-boxes or built-in graphics (one total image)
    • use template with page numbers, dynamic date, and standard headings

Quizzes / Exams:

A small thing to watch for in our courses is to always split up (paginate) tests so that a student doesn't spend too much time on any one page.   For example:

  • never have a big test with 10+ questions on a single page.
  • never have more than one essay questions on a page
  • for multiple choice, good to do 2-3 questions per page.

Reason:  Moodle doesn't save a student's work on a test until they change pages.   If something happens during the test (Internet burp or server timeout or whatever), the student loses everything on that page.   If they lose 2 questions (or one essay), that's sad.    If they lose 30 questions or multiple essays, that's terrible.   Also, if a student spends a long time on a page it also increases the chance that the server will time-out.    Therefore, paginate and save our students from a possible disaster.

Canadian Spelling:

When doing text, let's make sure we're loyal to our Canadian way of spelling (eg. colour vs. color).

Other words?   See:

Last modified: Friday, 9 December 2022, 11:53 AM