Monday, June 13, 2011

Start Here Button

    Recently, I took courses (online, of course) to become a Quality Matters peer reviewer.  (More about that in another post).  One of my classmates there, Mary Wells, talked about having a Start Here Button, a place for students to go for all those beginning-of-course matters – what to do when things go wrong, some information about your teacher, how to navigate the course, and so on.

    I loved the idea and am incorporating it into my courses for next year.  On my sample Moodle course (no student information on it), you can see what this looks like, and one way it can be set up in Moodle.  I put it in its own HTML block at the top, so students will always see it first.

    The links in the Start Here block go to documents I stuck in the very last topic for the course.  Thanks to Moodle’s “scroll of death” (= it seems to take forever to get to the bottom), students are unlikely to go down there.  Mary Cooch, Moodle blogger extraordinaire, has come up with a more elegant solution here 

    If you don’t already subscribe to Mary’s blog, you should; she is a fount of Moodle wisdom.


  1. According to
    Eye Tracking Moodle: Improving usability & what do students really see?

    Gergely Rakoczi, TU Wien – Teaching Support Center

    you should put that html block in the upper left corner.

  2. Excellent point! That presentation is so interesting about how students' eyes move around the page. I had been working from older research (based on print) that readers go to the upper right corner first. But now that I've seen this, I'll move my Start Button to the left.

    Thanks! - Fran