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Teachers in Moodle have a lot of different options at their disposal to change the way their courses look and this e-vinkkin will list a number of them.

1. Blocks and Topics

Perhaps the most obvious course elements are the topics (aiheet) in which most of the learning resources and activities go. The teacher can change the number of course topics in the course settings under the Course Format (Kurssiformaatti) heading. When editing is turned on the order of the topic sections can be changed by dragging and dropping and it is also possible to highlight one topic as the current one.

The standard Moodle course comes with two blocks on the left (Navigation and Administration) and a number of other blocks on the right. The Navigation and Administration blocks are essential, so they should not be remove. However, you can dock them to the page margin, so that they take up no space. This is especially useful on small screens. Moving the cursor over the docked block will open it. The other blocks can be dragged and dropped left and right and up and down in the block columns. Note that Moodle offers more side blocks than you find in your course when it is created, so you can add blocks and delete others as your needs go.

2. Course Theme

When a new course is created it automatically takes the theme (teema) of the category where it is located. Courses under the LapinAMK category take the LapinAMK theme, while courses under Lappia take the Lappia theme, etc. However, every teacher can choose a different theme for his or her course(s). This is done in the course settings under the Appearance (Näkyvyyteen liittyvät asetukset) heading. There is a whole list of course themes at your disposal. These have different colour palettes and different block layouts.

3. Course Format

When a course is created it comes with the standard Topics  (Aiheet) format, but Moodle offers a number of alternative formats. The Weekly (viikot) format turns every topic in a week, starting from the starting date for the course, which is set in the course settings. The Collapsed Topics (Tiivistetyt aiheet) format makes the topics format far more flexible, allowing not only for the topics to be collapsed at will (useful in long courses), but also allows the use of multiple section columns, arranging sections by day or week or by current topic, etc. For those who wish to clean thier course pages of course materials, the Grid (Ruudukko) format offers the option to replace the topcis with clickable pictures, that provide access to each section in turn.

Here are a few examples of the same course with different looks (Note that the differences in these pictures are not very drastic, but they could be, different depending on the choices the teacher makes). You can click the pictures for a bigger version.

 

LapinAMK Custom Corners theme Topics format

A course with the default topics format, LapinAMK Custom Corners theme and docked Navigation and Administration blocks

LapinAMK Custom Cornerstheme Collapsed Topics format

The same course as above but the course format is now Collapsed Topics

LapinAMK Custom Corners themeCollapsed Topics format - two columns white

The same course as above but with the side block from the left column moved to the right column and with the Collapsed Topics format set to display sections in two columns

LapinAMK theme Grid format

Again the same course, but now with the standard LapinAMK theme and the Grid format

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