Bryn Mawr College’s Library and Information Technology Services (LITS) department maintains a local installation of Moodle, a learning management system designed to facilitate teaching, learning, communication, and information-sharing among students, faculty and staff. All users must follow the terms of Bryn Mawr College’s Acceptable Use Policy when using Moodle; failure to do so may result in the penalties outlined in that policy.
Data Collection and Privacy
Moodle collects and stores three types of data related to individual users:
- User-Generated Content, defined as any files, messages, or profile information that a user uploads, submits, or posts within Moodle.
- Usage Data that Moodle generates as individual users interact with the site. Time-stamped user activity logged in this manner includes, but is not limited to: logging into/out of Moodle; viewing sites; viewing, downloading, and uploading files or links; and viewing and submitting posts, messages, assignments and quizzes.
- Student Learning Data, which includes data that Moodle generates as students engage in quizzes and lessons (e.g., the number of attempts made on a question, whether attempts were correct or incorrect, etc.) and scores, grades or feedback that an instructor or grader assigns to students through Moodle.
All Moodle users can view and manage all of their own User-Generated Content and can view any Usage and Student Learning Data collected about them. See here for instructions.
Moodle users can also be enrolled in Course or Organization Sites, and may have access to additional site-specific Content and Data, depending on their role for those sites.
- Users with a “Teacher” role in a Course or Organization site:
- Can create site Resources (e.g., files, links, web pages, etc.) and set up interactive Activities (e.g., Quizzes, Assignments, Glossaries, Lessons, Forums, Questionnaires, etc.). Resource- and Activity-level settings determine what enrolled users can do and see. For example, when setting up a Forum, a Teacher can set whether posts are visible to all or only to a Group, whether non-Teachers can add new threads, and whether users can edit posts after submitting them, whether and how posts can be rated, etc.
- Can create Groups within a site and assign users to them.
- Can view, grade, and give feedback on Content that all enrolled users post or submit to the site (e.g., Assignment submissions, Quiz responses, Forum posts, etc.)
- Can view all site-specific Learning and Usage Data collected about users enrolled in the site.
- Cannot view Content or Data that Registered students or Auditors post to other Moodle sites (unless the user also has a Teacher role in those sites).
- Users with a “Registered student” or “Auditor” role in a course:
- Can view site Resources (e.g., files, links, web sites, etc.).
- Can participate in site Activities, as allowed by Activity-level settings.
- Can view, comment on, and rate or grade Content that other users post or submit, if and when allowed by Activity-level settings.
- Can view their own grades and feedback.
- Cannot create or edit site Resources (e.g., files, links, web sites, etc.) or Activities.
- Cannot view grades assigned to other students in Moodle. (They can see course averages if the Teacher has enabled this option in the Moodle Gradebook.)
IMPORTANT: Although “Registered students” and “Auditors” have identical permissions in Moodle, only “Registered students” are officially enrolled in an academic course. Teachers can add individuals to a Moodle site with student-level permissions using the Auditor role, but this DOES NOT enroll the individual in the course for academic credit. Students must enroll through Bionic or the Registrar’s Office to receive academic credit for a course; if they have done so, they will be listed as “Registered students” in Moodle.
If a Teacher makes a Moodle site guest-accessible, then people not enrolled in the course (including people outside of Bryn Mawr College and the Tri-Co) can log into Moodle and view site Content, including posts students make to any site-wide Forums, Wikis, or Blogs. Guests cannot create their own posts or otherwise participate in site Activities.
A small number of Library and Information Technology Services (LITS) staff are authorized to serve as Moodle system administrators. System administrators can access all content and data stored within Moodle, including data associated with Course or Organization Sites. System administrators will only use User-Generated Content, Usage Data, and/or Student Learning Data pertaining to individual, identified users to the extent needed to keep the system running, help individuals troubleshoot and fix technical issues, or to provide the Honor Board or the Offices of the Undergraduate Dean, the Dean of the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research, or the Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences with data and information needed to adjudicate questions of credit and academic integrity. System administrators may compile, store, and share aggregated, anonymized Usage Data and Student Learning Data as needed for the purposes of educational research or College business, as long as that data cannot be traced to identifiable individuals.
All use of data collected and stored on Moodle, including use by system administrators, is governed by the terms of Bryn Mawr College’s Data Handling Policy. Failure to observe these terms can result in the penalties described in that policy.
FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) law also governs the use of student educational records collected and stored on Moodle, such as grades or posts and assignments submitted for a course.
LITS will maintain sites created for individual academic courses on the Moodle server for two years. We will remove older courses over Fall and Spring breaks (e.g., a course created for Fall 2014 would remain on the server until fall break in 2016), to give faculty time to copy materials into new courses. Faculty or departmental administrators can contact Educational Technology Services to request that courses that are routinely taught less frequently than every other year remain on the server longer.
LITS will maintain sites created for organizations and non-course related uses for two years after the course was last accessed or until all enrolled users have left Bryn Mawr College, whichever comes first.
Users with a Teacher role in Moodle Course or Organization sites can use the Course Back-Up feature to download Course Content and Data for longer storage. (See here for instructions.) These archive files should be handled and stored in a manner consistent with Bryn Mawr’s Data Handling Policy, particularly if they contain student educational data.
IMPORTANT: LITS cannot guarantee that users with a Registered student or Auditor role in a given site will have access to site Content and Data for the period specified above, as Teachers can delete or hide content and sites under their control at any point. Students are strongly advised to keep copies of papers, posts, and assignments submitted through Moodle and archive any syllabi or bibliographic information they may need for future coursework or research at the end of each semester.