The advance in modern technology has a great impact on various aspects of human life in general since innovations have facilitated our daily activities. For instance, now, almost everyone possesses a smartphone, which is the product of human-produced knowledge, that can be used to communicate with relatives and friends around the world. Those innovations have come to reality by the efforts and painstaking work of thousands of researchers around the globe. The ceaseless endeavor of curious people has made this life a lot easier. The human-pioneered discoveries and findings have been exploited to progress the education process as well. In order to continue the progress of science, we have to come up with novel approaches in the field of education. Nowadays, the educators of many academic institutions around the world have adopted new gadgets in their classes, such as using PowerPoint presentations, Projectors, Learning Management systems (Moodle) and iClickers. Recent technological advancements have also left impact on the education system. For instance, electronic learning (e-learning) has widely embraced and exploited in modern education system; hence, our institution has enthusiastically adopted the unconventional and the state-of-the-art techniques in education system.
Therefore, Salahaddin University-Erbil (SUE) has recently established an E-leaning Laboratory, with the support of Erasmus+ programme of the European Union, at the SUE Research Center. This Laboratory, which is furnished with a carpet, twenty computer desks, and twenty rotary chairs, has twenty hp desktop computers, which are connected with each other through a server. There is one Cannon brand color laser printer, which can be used to print handouts for the prospective workshop participants. In addition, this lab is equipped with a Sony Brand data show projector, that can be employed during the workshops to present interactive data to participants. Also, there is a Lenovo laptop for the instructors to use it during lecture times. However, we are in an urgent need of a fast internet line for this lab, because when the lecturers upload their course materials, those files should be available for the student all the time; otherwise, students cannot obtain their course materials. For this reason, the server has to be online on clock. Now, we are in the process to obtain a fast internet line (20MB) with support of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications-KRG, Directorate of Internet Networks.
This laboratory has been established to train the instructors at the SUE on how to use Learning Management System (LMS), such as Moodle. Moodle is a free and open source course management software that is used by many institutions around the world. The SUE instructors can take advantage of this freely available software to manage their courses online. They can upload lecture slides, videos, quizzes onto the server that is located in the SUE Research Center. Afterwards, students can have their own log in and passwords to be able to access to the materials of respective courses. Furthermore, LMS system can be used to give online lectures. As we know that the education level of all the students are not the same. It is very challenging to relay the course knowledge to all the students alike, when you have a diverse group of students in terms of education level in the class. Therefore, the main aim of this project is to train as many as instructors possible to show them how to use LMS platforms to manage their respective courses which in turn this will help instructors to improve their communications with students. Also, this project aims at decreasing the effect of knowledge gap found in a diverse class. For instance, some students are fast learners and other need more time to have a firm understanding of a lecture. When the lecturers use LMS system, students can go back to lecture slides or videos and review them again until they will have a good grasp of the topic. This makes the education process more interesting and will increase the success rate of the students which is the ultimate goal of education system. Ultimately, the college graduates can better serve their fellow citizens from different walks of life.
E-Learning Laboratory at various angles