Ancestry Project: E-Learning Design with a WordPress Website
Ancestry Project is an online education program employing
e-learning tech and WordPress as an LMS
Ancestry Project offers free resources and training to educators in areas like ancestry research, digital storytelling, Canadian history and culture. Most of the materials are free throughout 2017 (for Canada 150). Register for access to PDFs and streaming audio under the topics of Famous Canadians, Immigrant Stories, and Canadian Songs.
In January I launched the website and opened up user registration. I advertised Canada wide, primarily to educators working in ESL. So far I have published a half dozen blog posts, some PDFs, and a few media-focused pages with streaming audio and downloads.
While it is possible to work with a variety of online tools, especially Moodle or cloud-based LMSs like Schoology or Edmodo, I opted for the WordPress platform (WP). The main advantage of WP offers sophisticated control over page design and media.
WordPress CMS as LMS
Many of you may be familiar with content management systems like WordPress, or similar blog management tools like Blogger. It’s relatively easy to use these tools in educational settings, especially if we make use of media and document sharing, posts, comments and the ability to make pages private. We can host class documents, share media, or have a rich discussion in an environment that can be restricted to our participants.
Challenges/Solutions: I innovated by adding features to this WordPress site that are commonly associated with LMS or learning management systems. Access is limited to registered users, downloads are restricted, and participants can customize their profile pages and communicate with their peers via forums or blog posts.
WordPress relies on plugins for advanced functionality. In this case, two core plugins were employed. UltimateMember provides registration and user management tools, and LearnDash provides LMS tools, such as course design and creation.
Access Ancestry Project: Registration is free. So are most materials (throughout 2017). Links below.
You may be interested in DIY LMS, a presentation covering the basics of do-it-yourself learning management systems. From Moodle, a standard in many schools, to cloud-based tools like Schoology, there are lots of options for self-starters interested in managing their own e-learning. Individual teachers can set up and get started within hours. Take control of your LMS options today.
WordPress, Moodle and Schoology are examples of online tools that anyone can use for education and training.
Contact Mike Simpson if you have questions or are interested in booking a training session.