Edwiser RemUI vs. Academic Theme: Which Moodle™ Theme to Choose in 2023
Are you looking for the perfect Moodle theme to build your website but can’t decide which one to choose?
Well, you are pretty close to finding the answer.
Because in this post, we are going to compare two of the popular Moodle themes, namely Edwiser RemUI and Academic. Both are popular for their UI, customer support, and a number of other reasons.
You might also have heard about them already, but if you’re wondering which one is a better choice, then don’t worry. We’ll try to understand which of these two themes is best for building your eLearning site.
Table of Contents
Edwiser RemUI vs. Academic Moodle Theme: A Comparison
#1. Layout and UI
Layout and UI is the first thing any user notices in a theme, so the theme you choose must have an eye-catching UI and layout. Apart from this, the UI should also be user-friendly to make the user experience as smooth as possible. Let’s see what these themes offer on this criteria:
After going through the UI of both themes, it’s easy to see that Edwiser RemUI has a more well-designed and polished appearance than the Academic theme. All the visual elements and other features look more appealing in the demos of Edwiser RemUI when compared to the Academic theme.
Edwiser RemUI demo
Academic theme’s UI, on the other hand, is something that would appeal more to people who have a preference for classic and minimalist design.
When it comes to pre-built demos, Edwiser RemUI includes multiple pre-designed demo sites that can be imported quickly with a demo importer to set up your site quickly. They also keep adding new demos on a regular basis. However, the Academic theme comes with a single default demo that is imported automatically when you set up the site. If you don’t like what you see after activating the theme, you must design from scratch, as there are no other demo choices.
Having said that, let’s look at the number of layouts in both of these themes.
Number of Layouts
Building a new layout from scratch is quite time-consuming, and that’s why all themes try to provide you with some pre-built layouts for various types of pages to save you time.
Now, you can understand why the number of layouts plays an important role while building your site and how it can affect the design of your eLearning site.
Here are the details regarding the number of layouts provided by both themes for various purposes:
- 7 homepage layouts
- 6-course page layouts
- Single course enrollment page layout
- Single course index page
- Single login page layout
- Single homepage layout
- 3 course page layouts
- Single course enrollment page layout
- Single course index page
- 2 login page layouts.
Based on this information, it’s clear that besides its more polished design, the Edwiser RemUI has the upper hand over Academic in the number of page layouts too.
The navigation of a theme plays a significant role in your eLearning experience as it allows users to find the content that they need. No one would surf such a site that is difficult to navigate. For an eLearning website, it becomes even more important because users on these sites come to learn something, and they would definitely not want to waste their time finding modules or activities through a cumbersome navigation process.
An eLearning site’s navigation functionality is divided into 2 parts. Let us learn about them and see how these themes deal with them.
Navigation inside courses
One of the most important features of an eLearning theme is navigation inside courses. The students must be able to go through the different modules and exercises included in the course. Keeping this in mind, Edwiser RemUI comes with a sidebar that helps the students navigate to any part of the course without much hassle, even from inside the modules.
The course navigation panel in Edwiser RemUI
The Academic theme also has its navigation panel on the left-hand side of the page. This panel shows the sub-sections of the course so you can quickly navigate between them to learn whatever you want to learn.
The course navigation panel in Academic
In a nutshell, both themes allow for easier navigation inside the courses.
Jumping between courses
Being able to navigate inside the course isn’t enough — your theme should also allow you to jump between different courses if you’re taking more than one course. The “All Courses” page of Edwiser RemUI comes with filters to help you to sort and find the courses as per your preferences. You can sort them out alphabetically and search for them based on a category or a keyword. The theme also provides three different types of views (i.e., List, grid, and summary view) for the courses.
However, the Academic theme provides very limited features in this case. They have a courses section on their homepage which shows the course categories and courses sorted by categories in two tabs, but you can’t filter or sort courses with any other features.
All Courses page of Academic
#3. Customization Capabilities
There are 4 points that determine the customization capabilities of a Moodle theme: a live customizer, customization blocks, the ability to use custom color schemes and fonts, and custom CSS and JS support. Let’s see how both themes perform in these areas:
You can create a webpage in the blink of an eye with Edwiser RemUI’s drag-and-drop page builder known as the Visual Personalizer. It allows you to create pages from scratch with design elements of your choice, placed in the layout and location of your choice, without writing a single line of code. You just drag the desired elements from a sidebar and drop them into the main content area, and then you can see your page taking shape in real-time.
Edwiser RemUI Visual Personalizer
However, Academic doesn’t come with any such Live customizer or block-based page builder that can be used to create new pages with ease. In fact, this feature is a key distinction of Edwiser RemUI, as very few themes seem to have something similar. Since this feature makes creating new pages a breeze, it’s a big deal and makes a big difference.
The customization blocks decide the extent of your freedom in designing your pages. The greater the number of blocks included in a theme, the more elements you can use while designing your pages using Live Customizer. The Visual Personalizer by Edwiser RemUI provides more than 150 unique customization blocks that can be added to your page.
The Academic theme doesn’t have any such customization blocks simply because it doesn’t have the live customizer where they can be used.
Custom CSS and JS support
Academic allows you to use custom CSS for any kind of customization that’s not possible with theme features. However, it does not provide custom JS support.
Edwiser RemUI, conversely, allows you to use both Custom CSS and JS for all the customization you want to do in the site’s appearance.
Custom color schemes and fonts
Both Academic as well as Edwiser RemUI themes allow you to use custom color schemes and fonts while designing your site. This can allow you to tailor the design of your site to your brand identity instead of being stuck with a few pre-defined color schemes.
Login page customization
Login page layout of Academic
Academic provides two login page layouts with customizable background images, whereas Edwiser RemUI provides only a single layout for the login page while allowing you to completely alter the appearance of your login page as per your preferences.
It allows you to change the placement and location of your login form on the page. You can also customize the design of your login page with colors, fonts, and images of your choice.
That way, Edwiser RemUI provides more flexibility with the login page customization despite providing a single login page layout.
The customizable login page of Edwiser RemUI
Both Edwiser RemUI, as well as Academic, are fully responsive Moodle themes. They look perfect on different screen sizes and resolutions. This is handy when optimizing your Moodle site for the various screen sizes of laptops, computers, and smartphones.
#5. Stability, Compatibility, and Support
A good Moodle theme is identified by its compatibility with the latest Moodle versions. Also, it should have robust customer support to help its users whenever they get stuck with something. Here is how both themes perform in these areas:
Though the developers of the Academic theme keep rolling out updates from time to time, they are not very consistent with it. There is often a substantial gap between the rollout of their updates.
Edwiser RemUI developers, on the other hand, release updates every month to keep their theme up-to-date with every new feature and as secure as possible against known security vulnerabilities.
Moodle versions supported
Academic supports all Moodle versions from Moodle 2.7 to Moodle 4.1+, while Edwiser RemUI supports Moodle versions from Moodle 3.0 to Moodle 4.2+.
However, it’s worth noting that although these themes can work on really old versions of Moodle, you won’t receive any support from the developers if your site is still stuck with a legacy version of the platform. That is because Moodle itself doesn’t provide any support for its legacy version, so theme developers also refrain from providing any kind of support for Moodle installations between 2.5 to 3.1.
Both Edwiser RemUI and Academic themes offer multilingual support, which makes it easier for you to publish eLearning content in your desired language. Being RTL language compatible, both themes can properly display the content in Urdu, Arabic, Hebrew, etc. Edwiser RemUI is also translation ready, while Academic is not.
Customer support quality and response time
Academic provides an email contact form for you if you are faced with any kind of problem. Their customer support answers the questions submitted through the form to help you with theme features, bugs, and other issues. You can also get help integrating 3rd party services and plugins with the theme. They generally get back to the user within the same business day. You can also reach out to them over their email at [email protected].
Edwiser RemUI, on the other hand, comes with a support request form if you are stuck in some problem. Like Academic, they also respond to queries regarding theme features, bugs, or integration of 3rd party plugins and services with the theme. And they also respond to your queries within the same business day in most cases. Lastly, you can also approach them over email at [email protected].
You get the regular license of Academic at just $49, while Edwiser RemUI offers it at a price of $69.
In the regular license by Academic, you get access to quality checks and future updates along with 6 months of support. If you wish, you can buy 12 months of support at an additional cost of $14.62.
Edwiser RemUI, on the other hand, offers full 12 months of support without charging anything extra at $69 only.
You can also purchase lifetime licenses of both these themes if you want to. Academic charges a hefty $2300 for its extended license, while Edwiser RemUI charges only $299 for its lifetime license.
Both the themes, Edwiser RemUI and Academic, are unique in their own ways, catering to users’ different requirements. While the former has many features that help users customize their pages according to their convenience, the latter is a good choice for first-time Moodle users who want a simple theme with good features and a classic, minimalist design.
Here’s how both themes compare at a glance:
|Support provided||12 months||6 months|
|Lifetime license||Yes — $299||Yes — $2,300|
|Course page layouts||6||1|
|Custom color schemes and fonts||Yes||Yes|
|Custom CSS and JS support||Yes||No|
|Customizable login page||Yes||No|
|Moodle versions supported||3.0 – 4.2+||2.7 – 4.1+|
Our suggestion to you will be to check out the demos of both themes and then choose the one as per your requirements. Edwiser RemUI has recently undergone a major upgrade that has leveled up its UI while also adding more demos to it, so you should definitely give the demos of both themes a look. You can check out the Edwiser RemUI demo here and the Academic theme demo here.
Thank us later!
Also Read: Edwiser RemUI vs. Space: A Comparison of Two Popular Moodle Themes, Edwiser RemUI vs. New Learning Moodle Theme: Which One is Best for Your Moodle Site, Edwiser RemUI vs. Edumy: Which Moodle™ Theme to Choose in 2023