Moodle, WAAA accounts, Open days (weeks)

This is just a dump of when we assisted the SfH with their open week access to Moodle.

The background is, BUCS maintain account details. My line is they should continue to, and be the only people for access to centrally supported systems. We have a number of account types to support this. Access to Moodle/LMF is via WAAA (assuming not in applicants database when they get their UoB username/password)

To support BUCS (it sounds like WAAA system needs a major overhaul to create more agility and local ownership to offer open day access etc.,) we (e-learning team) gave access to Moodle via a dept spreadsheet system,i.e. they fill the gaps, send it to use, we upload it.

This worked, however, it was rather labour intensive for us as we needed to create usernames and password, wait for the spreadsheet to appear, clean the data, respond when they wanted to (while other work needed to be completed), upload it, manage enrollments and then remove the accounts post the open day event from the database.

The lessons from above suggest we need to reduce the reliance of the e-learning team to have to get involved in manual processes. this will include placing the responsibility on the dept who are needing the accounts to manage the process. Interestingly, D4LLL are looking at a similar need, which WAAA accounts should be used, but the current system is unlikely to cope. Therefore, there will be pressure on us to help – meetings already in the diary 🙂 However, they are adding the account details direct to SAMIS, and they could include username and password details as user defined fields. They could run a business object report / extraction script to produce the csv file needed for the upload (file format – name, email, username and password). They could then host the file in a certain place where we could point Moodle to harvest it for account generation. The D4LLL manage user enrolment. After the agreed period, we remove the link for the external database, and remove the users.

Given the workload in the final step, it might be set as another task for the dept, i.e., is not automated, they’ll have to remove the users manually.

This should reduce our workload significantly. Food for thought …

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