Microsoft’s Open Technologies subsidiary MS Open Tech has partnered with leading support and hosting services provider RemoteLearner (Remote-Learner.net Inc) for the integration of Microsoft Office 365 into open source learning platform Moodle to equip teachers and students with Office tools.
The integration aims to provide a greater productive experience to students and teachers by bringing together login credentials, management of calendar tasks and creation of course content. It also focuses on bringing other workflow improvements for education institutions and other Moodle users, writes Rich Edmonds of Microsoft News.
Jean Paoli, president of MS Open Tech, promised the success of the new plugin integration.
“Working closely with Remote-Learner, we’re delivering a technical solution for one of the most popular open source learning management systems that aims to provide seamless workflows for both Moodle and Office 365 users. By working closely with the open Moodle community, MS Open Tech will continue taking feedback and maintaining, improving, and adding new features”
OneDrive for Business, OneNote and Office 365 Outlook calendar have been integrated with Moodle, enhancing the backbone of the experience provided by RemoteLearner. Students and teachers, as well as enterprise users, will also be allowed to login with the same ID.
Teachers and students will also have their own personalized Office 365 calendars that will store any events created in Moodle and allow them to be easily tracked. Instructors will no longer need to manually update their calendars or send out separate event invitations to students, writes Ben Sullivan of TechWeek Europe.
Version 1.0 of this plugin was officially released on January 21 at the BETT (British Educational Training and Technology) Show.
Instructors will also be allowed access to embed interactive online PowerPoint lessons via an open format standard with Office Mix. Lessons may be composed of audio, video, digital ink, interactive simulations or assessments. Documents held in OneDrive for Business can readily be utilized with any Moodle courses. Any updates to the documents will also be linked to Moodle, promoting a streamlined version control and easy integration of cloud stored content.
Integration with OneNote allows students and teachers to create and work on assignments in the digital note taking application. Their work can then be submitted through Moodle and instructors can provide feedback within the same document.
Jason Cole, CEO, Remote-Learner, expressed his delight at the partnership.
“We are thrilled to be able to work with Microsoft to integrate Moodle with the Office 365 platform. With the Office 365 plugins for Moodle, Microsoft continues to demonstrate its commitment to open source software and education. Educators and trainers who have both Moodle and Office 365 create new learning experiences that leverage the power of both platforms. Moodle administrators can deploy these new features knowing they have the support of both Microsoft and the Moodle Partner community.”