3 Simple steps to Simplify Moodle’s Navigation

Did you know, a recent independent survey reported that “50% of total students dropping out from an online learning medium do so because of complicated user experience and navigation”.

If you’ve been seeing consistent drop-outs among your students, the reason might be similar.

With Moodle, there can be simple changes for you to make to improve your site navigation and increase course engagement drastically.

Read on to know more about them.

What’s the problem with Moodle’s Navigation?

If you take a look at your Moodle site upon login, these are the menu items that are displayed to students:

  • Dashboard
  • Home
  • Calendar
  • Private Files
  • My Courses

For students, this is an overload of information since they have to choose between performing certain tasks or exploring these menu items.

Confusion leads to the loss of time.

Now, let’s think from the perspective of a student what is the most important information that they would need?

“Dashboard & Courses”

Courses will help students quickly access the content they need whereas the Dashboard will help them navigate back after exploring the course.

But How to Customize Moodle Navigation

Before Moodle version 3.2 was released, it was always a task to customize the navigation bar. To get the desired results you had to add some custom HTML & CSS.

Since most of us aren’t comfortable with coding, thinking about changing Moodle’s navigation was an activity better avoided.

However, once Moodle’s default theme Boost was released with Moodle version 3.2, we were presented with more customization capabilities along with some ready to use Moodle plugins which help us do the same. And that’s what we’ll explore next.

Custom Navigation Plugins

We did some research to sift out for ready to use plugins in the Moodle directory that will help in customizing the Moodle navigation.

Our favorites were,

  1. NavBar Plus
  2. Boost Navigation
  3. Custom Navigation

To save time we tested these plugins with popular Moodle themes and zeroed-in on one plugin which works the best for most situations to customize the Moodle navigation: Boost Navigation Fumbling.

The Boost Navigation plugin fared well when it came to,

  • Customization Capabilities,
  • Compatibility with latest Moodle versions,
  • Compatibility with popular themes for Moodle,
  • Ease of use

It also offered robust documentation that allows you to set up the complete custom navigation in less than 15 mins.

And to add to it we tested with the plugin with few of the best themes in Moodle like Boost, Edwiser RemUI & Fordson themes.

Using Boost Navigation

  1. To Create Custom Menu for All Moodle users

          1.1 – Follow this path Site Administration > Appearance > Boost Navigation Fumbling > Root Nodes

          1.2 – Under “ Remove root nodes from Boost’s nav drawer “ you can check all those menu items that need to be removed from Moodle’s default navigation

          1.3 – To add new menu items follow this path Site Administration > Appearance > Boost Navigation Fumbling > Custom Root Nodes

          1.4 – Add custom menu items specific to Administrators or All Users in this format

Example: About Us | https://acme.com/about-us/

2. To Create Custom Course Navigation

          2.1 – Follow this path Site Administration > Appearance > Boost Navigation Fumbling > Course Nodes

          2.2 – Out here you can remove the default menu items that are part of course navigation like “Badges, Competencies, Grades, Participants”

          2.3 – It also lets you add new default menu items like “Sections, Activities, Resources”

          2.4 – If you do not wish to add “Sections, Activities & Resources” as new menu items then you could include some custom ones too.

Follow this path Site Administration > Appearance > Boost Navigation Fumbling > Custom Course Nodes

Here you can add custom menu items in this format – 

Introduction to Machine Learning| https://acme.com/introduction-video/ 

Isn’t it simple and easy?

And the best part is it’s compatible with Edwiser RemUI.

Final Thoughts

Boost Navigation + Edwiser RemUI lets you customize your Moodle in an easy manner and gives your students personalized learning experiences.

Give this a try and share your thoughts in the comments section below.