Digi Domi

Sharing my passion for technology and learning.

MUGSE 3: Royal Veterinary College (RVC)

on March 10, 2015

The third meeting of MUGSE was held on Friday and kindly hosted by Ben at RVC. This was the first meeting in London and there was a nice mix of experienced and new users. We were also very lucky to have Don Christie from Catalyst IT in attendance.

The session kicked off with a round table of questions and issues. Everyone got to ask a Mahara question or describe a problem they are having. We then worked through the list and crowd-sourced answers and solutions from the mixed experience at the group. This was showed just why user groups are so powerful and useful, as we were able to prove that many minds are better than one.  Some of the questions and problems that came up included:

  • Wanting to see examples of practice
  • How to Auto create groups?
  • Moodle integration
  • If anyone else was using Institutions
  • Open badging in Mahara
  • Who will be moving to the new version in April?

Most of these had answers, some of which will be touched on in the rest of this post, and as for those that aren’t, well that is why you need to come along to a user group meeting.

After our group discussions, we had a short break before moving into the presentation half of the session. This began with Roger and Sam from Southampton Solent University (SSU) telling us about their Mahara help, which is integrated into the ‘i’ information buttons. They have come up with a system so that each ‘i’ button provides three key areas of information, what is this, how do you use it, and a link to examples. Roger kindly informed the group that SSU’s help pages are open and publicly accessible via: http://mahara.solent.ac.uk/ Sam then took over from Roger to share some case study videos she had made with staff and student’s at SSU who have used Mahara as part of their course. Although we only watched clips of the videos, these are also available for anyone to access online, though Sam did add the caveat that they need a little more editing, they are very helpful: http://mahara.solent.ac.uk/casestudies

Following on from the SSU presentation was Don Christie from Catalyst IT who explained the Mahara release cycle and then gave an overview of the upcoming version. He told the group that the April release has some small changes to the UX, such as the ability to comment on artefacts (not just pages). more importantly is the introduction of web services, which will allow many new functions to be carried out and plugged in. Don also gave us a sneaky peak to the future and said that they have been working on bootstrap for an upcoming version of Mahara (not the April one but possibly the October release). He then wrapped up his section by asking if anyone in the community could send Catalyst wire-frames of ideal workflows in Mahara to improve the way the system works, as we have more experience of using the system in the real world. This might include being able to share from the files area instead of having to put stuff on a page or anything else you think would make Mahara easier to use.

Last, but hopefully not least, I finished the session by talking about the importance of utilising the community through various channels, including:

It was pointed out that I missed out contributing code, and of course this is very important as well, although might be less accessible for some people, but if you can then this is always a valuable contribution. In regards to making the best use of MUGSE and the Mahara Tracker, I also suggested that we could pool our resources and target particular bugs or feature requests, either by all voting for them or by pulling together funding if multiple institutions are willing to contribute a small amount. It is worth a try.

If you would like to attend a future MUGSE then please keep an eye on the Twitter account @mugseUK or direct message it or me if you would be willing to host a session. The next meeting will likely be after the MaharaHui.

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One response to “MUGSE 3: Royal Veterinary College (RVC)

  1. […] involved in the Mahara community. If you would like more details about this user group please read the article from Digi Domi and follow MUGSE on Twitter […]

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