Providers of Moodle LMS services, including certified Moodle Partners, are doing their part by helping organizations and teachers make the definitive jump into online learning.
In the eyes of many, the transition to fully distant experience was imminent, and the pandemic was a not very gentle push into the future. While a virtual classroom may never fully reproduce the in-person experience, it does offer countless benefits unavailable to students since the first lesson took place. Many teachers still remain reticent to embrace a Learning Management System, for reasons ranging across the scale of legitimacy. When all is said and done, the world of elearning was already blooming and for educators it is an indispensable part of their digital literacy.
And when it comes to choosing a system to experience online learning for the first time, Moodle is the standard. This is not to say that Moodle is objectively better, or even that most people subjectively think Moodle is better. The facts of the matter are:
- Moodle is free and open source: In most cases, you will be able to take your Moodle installation, system and data, with you. Keep it in your drive, migrate it between hosts and providers
- Moodle is flexible and extensible: As you can get into the code, you can tweak Moodle however you want.
- Moodle is by far the most popular LMS by level, sector and region (except the U.S. Higher Ed)
- Moodle is perfect for fast transitions from virtual to face-to-face. Some systems are biased towards one approach
Ready to get yourself a free Moodle site? Great! There’s just one thing you might want to check out before…
Connect with the ‘Moodleverse’ for free with the special Learn Moodle MOOC
The free onboarding Moodle HQ holds every six month just dropped a special, global lockdown edition:
The MOOC runs over 4 weeks but you can finish it at your own pace. In addition to the video content and other resources, you’ll get access to a global community of “Moodlers,” many of whom are so helpful that you’ll likely run into longtime veterans, with no other motive than to help you get started with Moodle. (And, yeah, their “Particularly Helpful Moodler” badge.)
So while getting acquainted with Moodle is ideal to make the most of your free site, the optimal approach is to get yourself a Moodle site along with your Moodle training, as you will be able to apply the lessons right away.
Now on to the good stuff:
Up to 3 months of Moodle 3.8 in AWS + Moodle for Teachers course
Nephila Web, Certified Moodle Partner in the Phillippines and Amazon Consulting Partner, offers a highly competitive deal: A fully ready Moodle 3.8 hosted on AWS, with the Moove theme (#1 according to LMSPulse readers) and the full H5P Plugin for interactive content. But that’s not all. You also get:
- Access to Nephila Web “Moodle for Teachers” course for free. (Pay extra for live tutoring and official certificate of completion.
- 15 days of your own BigBlueButton room to hold unlimited conferences with up to 50 participants.
Moonami: Free Moodle for 30 days is business as usual
Aligned to the principles of openness down to its organizational culture, Moonami has been helping getting people onto Moodle for free, for years. Like Nephila Web, they offer a full solution enterprise ready, for 30 days, no strings attached.
Free MoodleCloud: Great, but…
It would seems like the obvious choice. However, the free Moodle option comes with limitations many would find critical, and for many reasons it does not represent the optimal Moodle experience. Still, it is a friendly solution that is ready to help and it’s the official Moodle SaaS.
eThink’s legendary customer service, closer within reach
Perhaps one of the best experiences for LMS across the board, including of course open source, is eThink.
Their offer, while not exactly free, it’s still an intriguing deal: Free hosting and service fees until July, and 50% on implementation. You may choose vanilla Moodle, Moodle Workplace or Totara.
Famously, eThink Education has a 99% satisfaction rate, and a 100% 10-year retention rate. They’ve never lost a client.
Gnomio: Been there, done that
A completely free “donationware” Moodle serving mainly U.S. customers, Gnomio experienced a high rush of traffic in the past couple of days. Gnomio currently offers Moodle 3.5.
3ipunt’s ‘Moodle para todos’ (Moodle for Everyone)
In Spanish and Catalan, 3ipunt is another solution hosted on AWS. This time, the Certified Moodle Partner joins forces with AulaPlaneta, a Spanish content provider.
This new-in-town offering is intriguing, offering Moodle in 4 languages. It is not a Moodle Partner, and not much is known.