About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2060-2067
Publication year: 2017
ISBN: 978-84-617-8491-2
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2017.0613

Conference name: 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2017
Location: Valencia, Spain

A GRAPHICAL INTERFACE FOR AWARDING INCREMENTAL POINTS FOR DIGITAL BADGES IN AN ENGLISH VILLAGE REWARD SYSTEM

G. Bateson1, A. Vazhenin2, J. Brine2

1Kochi University of Technology (JAPAN)
2University of Aizu (JAPAN)
This paper describes the design and implementation of a graphical interface for awarding small numbers of points to students rapidly and repeatedly. The points accumulate and contribute toward digital badges which are used as the mechanism for recording and recognizing achievements in an English village project at a university in Japan. Hitherto, standard grading interfaces in leading open-source Learning Management Systems (LMS’s), such as Moodle, have not been suitable for awarding incremental points for two main reasons. First, there is the difficulty of locating a student in a vertical list of names that is ordered alphabetically and potentially spans several pages. Second, in order to award incremental points in systems that only store a total number of points, it is necessary for the teacher to perform some mental arithmetic when awarding points and increase the current total by the incremental amount.

To address these two issues, the new interface represents students graphically, as icons that are arranged on the computer screen to correspond to the physical location of the students in the classroom. The teacher simply taps or clicks the student icons to award points, which are then added to any points awarded previously. Thus, points can be awarded quickly and with minimal interruption to communication. In order to support these features, while at the same time adhering to Moodle’s standard internal programming protocols, an innovative scheme of data passing was developed. When the page first loads, information from each student’s profile is combined with the details of the icon locations and number of points awarded so far and is sent to the browser as a standard Moodle HTML form. Once in the browser, JavaScript is used to rearrange the form elements and present them as a graphical interface.

This interface was developed as the first stage of a project to nurture an English village community in Japan, in which an entire university campus is transformed into an English-speaking community. It was trialled in two main teaching environments. These were: (1) small-groups of up to 8 students attending voluntary, out-of-hours English conversation classes in a seminar room, and (2) medium-sized groups of up to 40 students attending compulsory general English classes in a university classroom. During the trials, it became apparent that the interface could be used not only for awarding incremental points but also for awarding scores for non-incremental tasks such as exams or reports. Furthermore, in response to teacher feedback, the interface was modified so that it could be used with Moodle's Advanced Grading methods, including Rubrics and Marking Guides.

Overall, the points interface proved to be a useful, reliable and popular method for awarding points within Moodle because it simplifies the task of locating students, reduces typing, and reduces the number of page loads. Thus, it can be said to have achieved the objectives of awarding points quickly and unobtrusively and it can now become a central technology in the larger goal of building an English Village based on digital badges.
@InProceedings{BATESON2017AGR,
author = {Bateson, G. and Vazhenin, A. and Brine, J.},
title = {A GRAPHICAL INTERFACE FOR AWARDING INCREMENTAL POINTS FOR DIGITAL BADGES IN AN ENGLISH VILLAGE REWARD SYSTEM},
series = {11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2017 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-8491-2},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2017.0613},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2017.0613},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {6-8 March, 2017},
year = {2017},
pages = {2060-2067}}
TY - CONF
AU - G. Bateson AU - A. Vazhenin AU - J. Brine
TI - A GRAPHICAL INTERFACE FOR AWARDING INCREMENTAL POINTS FOR DIGITAL BADGES IN AN ENGLISH VILLAGE REWARD SYSTEM
SN - 978-84-617-8491-2/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2017.0613
PY - 2017
Y1 - 6-8 March, 2017
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2017 Proceedings
SP - 2060
EP - 2067
ER -
G. Bateson, A. Vazhenin, J. Brine (2017) A GRAPHICAL INTERFACE FOR AWARDING INCREMENTAL POINTS FOR DIGITAL BADGES IN AN ENGLISH VILLAGE REWARD SYSTEM, INTED2017 Proceedings, pp. 2060-2067.
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