Free support for online classes using Moodle, the world’s standard LMS (Learning Management System); to be extended to all high schools and universities nationwide until the end of September 2020
— Empowering Educators in Hokkaido and Elsewhere in Japan Project —
Learning Management System “Moodle” x Video Conferencing System “Zoom / Microsoft Teams”
Moodle Association of Japan (President: Mr. Yoshikazu Asada, hereinafter referred to as “MAJ”), in cooperation with e-learning, Co. Ltd. (Minato-ku, Tokyo, CEO: Takeshi Matsuzaki, hereinafter referred to as “e-learning Co.”), will provide free of charge the server environment and operational support for the learning management system “Moodle”, which will enable online classes for all high schools and universities in Japan affected by the new coronavirus. MAJ and e-learning Co. have already launched the Empowering Educators in Hokkaido Project (EEH Project)to support university and high school students in Hokkaido, the first prefecture in Japan to have its own emergency declaration on March 2020. Since then, the number of inquiries from educational institutions not only in Hokkaido but all over the country has been increasing rapidly as the emergency declaration has been extended to all the prefectures. The emergency declaration has been lifted, but the way forward remains uncertain.
In light of these circumstances, the EEH Project has been renamed the Empowering Educators in Hokkaido and Elsewhere in Japan Project (EEHJ Project), and the free provision of materials has been extended to all universities and high schools in Japan.
This initiative is supported by Amazon Web Services Japan, Inc. (AWS).
- Period: Until September 30, 2020
- Eligibility: Domestic universities and high schools
We will provide an environment where students can use the system regardless of the number of classes and students, with the protection of personal information guaranteed for each school.
The number of students per school should be less than 1,000, and even a small class size is acceptable.
- Contents: ・Server environment for Moodle
・Moodle New User Support
・Linkage with Zoom / Microsoft Teams video conferencing system is also possible.
＊This will be provided free of charge during the above period, but can be transferred to another Moodle at the end of the period.
＊A separate contract for the Zoom / Microsoft Teams video conferencing system is required.
[Advantages of using the system]
- Easy to implement
No need to build a server or do any other complicated work.
All you need is a PC and an email address and you can start using Moodle.
It can also be linked to video conferencing systems (Zoom / Microsoft Teams).
Each school is responsible for registering students, setting up course pages, preparing content (teaching materials and learning activities), and signing up for a video conferencing system (Zoom / Microsoft Teams). However, MAJ member volunteers are available to provide support to school administrators by providing materials and answering questions about Moodle.
- Support for use
A Moodle user manual is also available. Students can simply create an account with their email address and start taking classes immediately. However, for video conferencing systems (Zoom / Microsoft Teams), please refer to the respective manuals.
- Easy to access
Both teachers and students can access the system anytime, anywhere with a computer, smartphone or tablet.
- Learning environment similar to regular classes
In addition to submitting and grading assignments and exchanging notices and questions on the display board, it is also possible to deliver lessons in conjunction with a video conferencing system (Zoom/Microsoft Teams), creating an environment similar to a face-to-face class.
■Background and Objectives
Moodle is an open-source learning support system created by experts from all over the world, based on the principle of “improving the ability of educators for a better world”. The mission of MAJ has been to promote awareness of research, education and development of “Moodle” and related systems.
On March 2020, Hokkaido issued its own “emergency declaration” to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus infection, and MAJ looked for ways to support students who would not be able to attend classes due to the temporary closure of schools, as well as their teachers who had to deal with the situation. The EEH project was started to provide free Moodle, which solves many of the problems associated with home-based learning and enables online classes to be conducted in an environment similar to that of regular face-to-face classes, to high schools and universities in Hokkaido. MAJ was quick to provide support by collaborating with e-learning, Co. Ltd., which has a strong track record in providing Moodle and is Japan’s only Moodle certified premium partner.
The emergency declaration, which has since been extended to the whole country, has been lifted, but many school officials, students and parents are still worried about the uncertain future.
This time, as the EEHJ project, we hope to support more educational institutions and provide them with opportunities to learn by expanding the scope of the project nationwide.