On the official Moodle Blog, Tom Murdock, the recently appointed Education Manager at Moodle HQ, shared his past experiences and background, his personal interests in EdTech, and how Moodle sees itself in the future of education.
Tom Murdock co-founded Moodlerooms in 2005 as he was introduced to a larger world of businesspeople and educators looking for ways to leverage the power of Moodle, the Open Source LMS. It was the result of his reflections about learning and technology, bolstered by his broad intellectual interests, and his appreciation for taking (and giving) the time for the things that need it.
Murdock is fond of his early formative years, which were full of “literature, writing and teaching.” He and his peers would spend hours every day perfecting a choreography, mastering and instrument, or memorizing long lines of a play. “I loved the messiness of learning this stuff,” he admits.
Once he started teaching, he brought this sentiment, of learning as a place without high expectations, other than to “fail loudly.” Today, Murdock still believes teachers should make a special effort to find out where students are spectacularly bad and let them try again, as opposed to keeping them from trying new things and only letting them color within the lines.
In 2012, Blackboard acquired Moodlerooms. Murdock moved away from the company, but not from the emerging EdTech scene of Baltimore. He became Chief Brand Officer of Unbound Concepts, a software company best known for its educational content recommendation engine, the basis for Artifact, an app available for iOS. He stayed for over three years, until he accepted the Moodle role, based out of Gerrardstown, West Virginia last March.
Working with Moodle, LMS and EdTech has given Murdock a critical piece of insight about the role of technology in the classroom. “I sound reductionist saying this … but Moodle helps a teacher slow time down.” The support system gives students another chance to reflect, take the time, and focus on the things they want to get better at. In his position as Education Manager, Murdock will work to make sure Moodle becomes a better, friendlier facilitator of the personal learning experience.
This Moodle Governance related post is made possible by: eThink Education, a Certified Moodle Partner that provides a fully-managed Moodle experience including implementation, integration, cloud-hosting, and management services. To learn more about eThink, click here.