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Call for Case Studies, Roadmap, Project Update

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Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

02 April 2009, 11:24 PM

Hi everyone - a few items of interest:

Call for Case Studies

We would like to start gathering a few case studies of Mahara usage across the world. We know many people are trialling or using Mahara, and one thing we hear a lot from potential adopters is "can you give us an example case study of Mahara usage?". So if you're already been using Mahara, it would be great to hear about it!

We're inviting people to make a View on about their experiences. It doesn't have to take long, and naturally you can always update it later. If you're interested in helping out, check out the Case Studies forum thread for more information.


In case you haven't seen it, we now have a roadmp published on the wiki. This should give you a good idea of what's coming up in Mahara 1.2, and what might be happening in future. We've also launched a Roadmap & Funding forum, to encourage discussion about items on the roadmap, and for people to get together to pool funding if they want an item done. If you have funding available for features not listed on the Roadmap, you're also welcome to discuss this in the forums.

Project Update

Aka: What's happening at the moment?

Work on the highly anticipated import/export functionality is continuing. We now have near full export support for the LEAP2A format, and partial import support. Over the next month, we'll be adding the ability to export your portfolio as a minature static website, which will be great for students to take away if they're not using Mahara for lifelong learning. We'll also be adding the user interface polish and tidying things up ready for Mahara 1.2, which we currently hope to release some time in the June/July timeframe.

Meanwhile, Richard Mansfield has been working on the Files plugin, and as a result he's fixed quite a few issues with it. The biggest one is, the files section will now work without javascript, which removes one of the last big barriers we have to full non-javascript support. Other work he's done is hidden "below the surface" of Mahara, but will have great benefits in future versions of Mahara, as we get time to utilise the new work.

If you're interested in keeping your finger on the pulse of Mahara development, you can follow us on twitter - it averages about one post a day, so shouldn't be too noisy.

That's enough from me, time to get back to work! Cool

A post by Deleted user was deleted

Jez Hops's profile picture
Posts: 91

08 April 2009, 10:04 AM

Time to wheel out the Captchas, Akismet and IP black lists me thinks Frown
Jez Hops's profile picture
Posts: 91

08 April 2009, 10:09 AM

Hi Nigel,

Its a bit early for me to do this... we have Mahara installed but have not promoted it yet.

We have some pilots planned to start in September, one with 4-500 students which will be interesting.

I think one of the issues (the main issue) is that people wander in (following links from Moodle sites) and are not sure what they are supposed to do... and leave.

The ones that do understand it do not stick around as there is no community there yet... sooo... the plan is to get some decent sized pilots completed and promote it... produce training videos... then perhaps I could help you with your case study :-D

08 April 2009, 3:36 PM

Hi Nigel,

Our university is using Mahara as our official e-portfolio system.  We rolled it out this past fall, and all of our "First Year Experience" students are using it, as well as students in other programs. It has been well received.  Let me know what additional information you might like/need.

Ellen Marie Murphy
Director of Technology Integration
The Sage Colleges

Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

08 April 2009, 4:29 PM

(replying to everyone at once to save on email spam):

Mr. Bio Metric's account has been suspended.

Jez: Good to hear! One way you can get students involved is by making them use Mahara for some course work, perhaps having a group project for them to collaborate on or by having to make a View. Maybe that would drag some more students over there from time to time Wink

Ellen - that's great to hear! We're calling for case studies that can be used to demonstrate Mahara's use across the world, if you would be able to create a  View about your university's experience so far that would be fantastic! Cool

Michael's profile picture
Posts: 2

09 April 2009, 12:35 AM

Hi Nigel,

our university is using Moodle since last semester. Additionally I did install Mahara. Mahara is not yet used for teaching.  But I offered it to our students councils for organizing their projects. They like Mahara very much. The only thing they don't like are the forums.  According to the students opinion the forum is confusing and user-unfriendly. 


Jez Hops's profile picture
Posts: 91

09 April 2009, 2:06 AM

Hi Nigel,

That is the plan... they will be using Mahara for part of the coursework (as I understand it).

I think the E-Portfolios will take off, that was the main driver for installing it. The community side should follow once a "criticl mass" is achieved.

It will be interesting to see how others are progressing with this. I would echo what Micheal said about usability of forums... I think more could be done to make Mahara more usable. The first stumbling block for students seems to be the profile page... they set their profile but do not realise that the display page is a view that has to be edited seperately... I thik the whole repository / view relationship takes a while for people to get to grips with... but that cannot be helped. Im sure some decent videos would help... I dount anyone has followed the links I left to the "quick students guide" etc.... all the users so far just wandered in with no incentive / training though...

Ref. Mr BioTastic... he came to drop a link... you have a PR6 domain and your links are followed... I am afraid you can expect more of these... a lot more.

One very simple change you could make would be to make the links "no follow"... i.e. attach the "rel=nofollow" attribute to href tags:



Luke Thompson's profile picture
Posts: 43

09 April 2009, 3:09 AM

Interesting. I'm one of the IT guys at an education office in western australia. We are looking into how we can utilise mahara. I was going to do some sort of training with the staff here on its basic functions.. maybe we can share some information over the coming months?
Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

09 April 2009, 7:15 AM

I forgot to delete the post, I have done so now.

Regarding the usability - you may want to read , and contribute your thoughts in the roadmap forum. We are going to have another usability sprint after 1.2, the navigation is high on our list of things to deal with. Though the forums aren't - we haven't heard any feedback previously that they're a problem, so it would be good to hear what people are thinking if there is one!

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