Viewing and Updating Participants' Profiles

Profiles are powerful and useful tools for you and your learners. Personal profiles give everyone in the course a real identity, and when everyone is engaged in collaborative activities, it makes the course more personal. If you use Moodle as part of a traditional course or as blended learning initiative, learners and instructors get to know each other. If you use Moodle for complete online teaching and/or training, it's much harder to develop rapport with your learners, and it's harder for learners to get to know each other and build working and collaborative relationships.

You can access profiles by clicking the Participants link in the People block. By default, Moodle places the People block in the top-left corner of your front page. (Refer to Figure 3-3.) The top part of Figure 3-6 shows an empty profile with the learner's name; country; city; e-mail; user status (in this case, student); and if assigned to a group, the group. This info is all set up when the learner is registered for the course. The bottom part of the figure shows the same profile completed with a picture, a descriptive paragraph, and the learner's interests. The great thing about profiles is that they make everyone involved in the course more real. Completing a profile is one of the first activities I teach my students when they come to one of my courses.

Figure 3-6: An incomplete profile on the left, with completed one on the right.

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