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Flexpage Documentation

Flexpage Documenation for Flexpage 1.9.

Site: Remote-Learner.net
Course: Remote-Learner.net
Book: Flexpage Documentation
Printed by:
Date: Friday, 20 October 2017, 3:14 AM

Introduction

The Flexpage format is a new course format for Moodle. It is named Flexpage for 'flexible page', as it is a format that enables a content author a great deal of control over how and where content is displayed.

overview

The basic features are:

  • 3 column view: Moodle blocks and modules can be assembled in any order in up to 3 columns on the page.
  • Inline Module display: the format can be extended to display module content inline (in the page). Presently this only has been extended for Forum, Assessment, and Resources, other modules show a link as expected.
  • Back button: When you enter a module, there is a back button to return you to the page you were previously on.
  • Parent-Child pages: a page can have child pages, and child pages can have child pages.
  • Automatic Tabs: A parent page can create a top tab if uses with the flexpage theme.
  • Course Menu: this block used with the Flexpage format provides a multiple menu system for navigating the pages.
  • Roles based menus: there is a 'view menu' role, so menus can be hidden/shown based on user role.
  • Backup and restore: any course in Flexpage format can be fully or partly backed up and copied to another course

Setting up a course

Setting up course to use Flexpage:
setting up the course

Once flexpage has been installed on your site, you can set a course to use this format in the course settings.

Making the first page

Setting up a page:


Page setup


After you have set flexpage as the course format (set the course format to 'page'), turn editing on, and the first screen you will see is the "Create page" screen. Give the page a name, set your settings up, and then Save changes.

On this page you can also set:
  1. Whether the page is published or now (only users with course editing rights can see unpublished pages)
  2. Whether the page creates a tab that links to it (this function will only work with a flexpage compatible theme)
  3. The width of the left column (in pixels, or enter #% to use percent)
  4. The width of the center column
  5. The width of the right column
  6. Whether or not to display links to previous and next pages at the bottom of the page content.
  7. You can use the settings on this screen as the default for subsequent pages in this course
  8. If there are other pages, you can set a page as the parent page
  9. New Feature: Force theme - each page can have it's own theme. Remember to select flexpage themes if you want top tabs to show on the page.
  10. New Feature: Show breadcrumbs - this sets special breadcrumbs for pages and modules linked from pages. In the current screen it is locked in the on position in the global settings (see below).
  11. New Feature: Advanced settings - when a Flexpage is used as a tab, this enables you to set URLs that highlight the page - for example if a block or module is linked to from a "Administration" page, you might want that page highlighted whenever a user goes to that block or module.


Adding blocks

page display
After adding a page, you will want to add some blocks to it. To maximize flexibility, every page you create starts off blank, so you'll need to add blocks and modules to each page as you create them.

To add a block, turn editing on and select the block from the "Add block" drop down menu.

Adding modules

adding a module

Adding modules is a little bit different from adding blocks. Moodle modules are added and manged in the "Manage Activities" tab you'll see when editing is turned on.

Adding a web page resource

adding a page of content

In the example above, we are adding a content page in Moodle's "Compose a web page" - html format.

window settings

Flexpage handles web page resources differently from some other resources - if the web page resource is set to display in the "Same window", then Flexpage embeds it in the page.

Adding the activity to the page


adding the content item to the page

Once the activity has been created in Manage pages, it becomes available to add to a page in the "Add Existing Activity" drop down. This adds the module to the center column in the default position.

page inline

Whether the web page is emebedded or shown as a link is controlled by the window settings.

switching from embedded to linked

Adding other activities - Quiz

adding activities

Once you add a quiz in Manage Activities, you can add the quiz to a page by using the "Add existing activity" drop-down.

quiz on the page

New Feature: Once the quiz has been added to the page, it shows up with the summary information embedded. (the way different activities show up in Flexpage is managed by a set of display functions in the course format folder - items without special display functions show up as links - like quiz. Forum, Label, Web Page resources, the new CMS resource, and Quiz have special functions which enable them to show up as embedded).
  1. In the example above, the course designer has placed a Web Page resource above the quiz with instructions.
  2. Below the resource the quiz summary, results, and start button. What shows here is controlled by the quiz settings - for instance if previous attempts is set not to show in the quiz settings, it won't show on Flexpage.
The items in the image above all have CSS tags, so they can be hidden or formatted by the theme.


Modifying Column width

Up to now we have just added items to the default middle column. Items can be moved from the middle by using the move arrows you see in edit mode. The basic concept is described below: Column width
As you add blocks and activities to pages, they are added in the center column of the page. To see how this appears, the image above shows the basic organization of a flexpage page with the three columns. The widths are set as determined in the page settings.

Using the move arrows we can move items from one column to another - in flexpage, blocks can be in the center and modules on the right or left:

Page setup

The discussion forum in a page

the forum in a page
As mentioned previously, the discussion forum is another special case in default flexpage - when added it shows up in a semi-embedded mode, showing the discussions and with a prominent "Add new topic" button.

Parent pages and child pages

Parent pages
Flexpage also supports the idea of parent pages and child pages - these can be used with the page menu module to create nested navigational structures.

To set a parent page for a page, simply choose it from the "Select parent page" dropdown while editing the page and save changes.

Setting up a page menu

page menu
The page menu enables you to create navigation menus for your site - these can be lists of links to pages, but can also link to external sites and directly to modules. You can create as many menues in your course as you like, and you can put them on any or all pages, as well as have them show up in tabs.

When you add a new Page menu, you will see a set of overall options:

page menu uptions


  1. The name of the menu
  2. Whether the menu is displayed as a list or a drop down on the page
  3. Display name - whether to print the name of the menu
  4. If you check this, the menu will show up as a tab, to the left of the page tabs
  5. The ordering for the tab - if multiple page menus are set to show as tabs, you can set the order in which they appear (from left to right).

Save changes and click the edit tab to add items to the menu.

adding items to the menu

  1. Links can entered
  2. You can select from a list of activities you have added in the Manage Activities tab
  3. You can select from a list of pages on the site

rendered menu

As items are added a preview of the menu is displayed. You can move items around, edit them, or remove them by using the icons on this screen.

adding items to the menu

Click "Add links" to add links you have entered above.

When you are done, click Save changes to exit.

Adding the menu to a page

adding the menu to a page

Once the menu has been created, you can add it to the pages of the course or site.

Users view the menu now and can use it to navigate between the pages of the site. The menu high-lghts the page a user is on, and displays the 'child-parent' relationship of the pages.

displaying the menu
As different menus can be displayed on different pages, you can create micro-sites and other complex (or simple!) navigational structures by using page menus and flexpage.

Using a menu as a tab

a menu as a tab

Any time you like, you can edit the page menu and set it to be used as a tab in the course.

the menu as a tab

When this is set, users can navigate through the pages and other links of the menu via a drop down from he tab.

Page management

As pages are added to the site or course, you can view them in the Manage Pages tab:
manage pages

  1. This shows the pages listed by Page name, in the order they are currently displayed on the site in (The order the tabs show up and the order users access them via "Next" and "Previous" links).
  2. You can move pages from one place to another here, as well as modify the parent-child relationships between pages via the move icons. You can also edit and delete pages via the respective icons.
  3. You can control whether pages show as tabs by clicking the 'eye' on and off.
  4. You can control whether pages show in the page menus by clicking the 'eye' on and off.
  5. You can publish or un-publish pages by clicking the 'eye' on and off.
  6. You can lock page availability to users based on their score or access to an activity.

Page Locking

Flexpage Page Locking:

Page locks can be used to control student access to pages based on their grade on course activities or access to resources - or both.

To set page access controls, click on the lock icon next to the page you would like to lock.

Manage Pages - Page Locking

On the locking page, choose the type of lock to add:
  1. Lock by activity accessed- this means that a user will have to view that activity before they can view the page.
  2. Lock by the grade of an activity - if you choose this type of lock users will have to achieve a grade on a Moodle activity before viewing the page.
In both cases, choose the type of lock and then click "Save Changes" - this will open the next screen.

locking a page

Adding an activity accessed lock - when adding the first type of lock, choose the activity or resource you want users to view before they can access the page. To satisfy this type of access restriction all a user needs to do is view the resource or activity.

Note: This type of lock can be used with either graded or non-graded activities.

lock by resource

Adding a graded item lock when adding this type of page lock, you will only be able to choose an existing graded activity in your course:

graded activity locking

After you choose the activity, you can set the grade required to unlock the page (the Max grade shows the maximum grade for the activity you have selected. In this example the current maximum grade for the Session 5 Quiz is 10 points).

Setting grade points for page locks

Pages can be locked by more than one criteria, for example in this overview of a set of page locks, users must view the Teaching Vowels resource AND score 5 or more points on the Session 5 Checkpoint quiz.

Locking overview

In this overivew:
  1. The setting shows the pre-requisites to students when they try to access the page, with a message about the lock and a link to the activity or activities that are locking the page.
  2. If this is set to yes, then pages are visible to students when locked in tabs and the menu.
    1. Visible locked pages show a message and if the "Show pre-requisites" setting is set to yes, then the page shows the user the link to the activity or activities that are preventing access to the page. In the Page Menu, locks are printed next to the page's name.
    2. If this is set to no, then pages are hidden until unlocked. In the Page Menu hidden pages are not shown until they are unlocked.
  3. If there are access locks the name of the activity or resource is printed, with a checkbox to remove the lock. To remove the lock, check the checkbox and click "Save Changes".
  4. If there are graded activity locks, the name of the activity or activities are printed, with a checkbox to remove the lock. To remove the lock, check the checkbox and click "Save Changes".
    4.1. The current grade that is required to unlock the activity is displayed. You can type in a new grade and click Save Changes.
  5. Pages can have more than one locking item, to add more choose an activity from the "Add activity accessed" drop down (this shows all the current activities in the course) and click "Save changes".
  6. Save changes saves the changes on your current screen. Cancel will close the screen and return you to the previous screen.
Student view of locked pages:
When students view a page menu with locked pages that are set to be visible, they see the pages with locks printed next to their names:

Student view of locks

If the pages are set to not be visible when locked, the students don't see the pages until they are unlocked.

The page below is set to be Visible when locked and Show Pre-requisites is set to yes.

lock message

Backup and Restore

Any course in Flexpage format can be fully or partly backed up and copied to another course.

If you change a course using "Page" format to a non-"Page" course format, and then back it up, it will lose the pages and contents of the pages it had. That is, if you restore it, and then set it back to "Page" format, you will not have the old course.