Moodle Bringing Plugin Support to Mobile Learning
As more and more dispensary employees access courses from their smartphones, tablets or other mobile devices, it is increasingly important to ensure your courses are mobile-friendly.
Encouraging students to install the official Moodle mobile app is one (1) way to improve their dispensary training experience. With the Moodle Mobile app, you can train your dispensary employees wherever you are, whenever you want, with these app features:
- Easily access course content: Browse the content of your courses, even when offline.
- Connect with course participants: Quickly find and contact other people in your courses.
- Keep up to date: Receive instant notifications of messages and other events, such as assignment submissions.
- Submit assignments: Upload images, audio, videos and other files from your mobile device.
- Track your progress: View your grades, check completion progress in courses and browse your learning plans.
- Complete activities anywhere, anytime: Attempt quizzes, post in forums, play SCORM packages, edit wiki pages and more – both on and off-line.
…and lots more – click here to see the full list of Moodle Mobile features.
To make the work of plugin developers on mobile easier, Moodle HQ has released a charter. Named “Mobile support for plugins,” it is intended to organize ideas and showcase progress. Ever since the release of Moodle 3.1, developers were technically able to extend plugin functionality to mobile devices.
On mobile, plugins are called “remote add-ons.” Making a plugin compatible with Moodle’s apps is difficult and lacking in standards so installation requires manipulation of the Moodle core-code in most cases.
The solution to these problems already exists, at least for the most part, in the architecture of plugins and as the Moodle roadmap explains, the specification for mobile add-ons must fulfill the following:
- Easy to build, maintain, install, and update.
- Support for Moodle 3.1 and newer.
- Support all types of plugins, operating systems, and devices.
To-date the Moodle roadmap outlines the general plan that would make the mobile app compatible with plugins:
- A plugin will now include an additional mobile.php file that would list the level of mobile support for each feature.
- For new or modified functions, new code must be added. It will be referenced following a series of rules that would let the system identify it so they are accessed according to each case.
- It would require a “basic markup” of Ionic that would enable modular development.
The Moodle roadmap features a practical example of the modifications made on a Moodle plugin files folder.
Let us know what you think.