This page aims to provide answers to frequently asked questions about the LIS Gateway for Moodle. If you have a question that isn’t answered here, please get in touch. Gateway for Moodle and SAIP is an implementation of the IMS Global Learning Information Services (LIS) standard (version 2.0.x). It provides a mechanism to integrate the Moodle Learning Management System with Campus Solutions via SAIP.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Who can use Gateway for Moodle?
- What can I use Gateway for Moodle for?
- What is required to perform an implementation?
- What Moodle customisations are needed?
- How easy is it for a PeopleSoft team to do the integration?
- How long does it take to implement?
- What support do you provide?
- What does it cost?
- Who else is using Gateway for Moodle?
Who can use Gateway for Moodle?
This FAQ refers to using Gateway to integrate Moodle with PeopleSoft Campus Solutions via SAIP. This is typically required by educational institutions running Campus Solutions and Moodle, or by systems integrators providing either Campus Solutions or Moodle or both.
What can I use Gateway for Moodle for?
Gateway’s primary use case is the provisioning of users (students and staff), course sections, and enrolments into Moodle from PeopleSoft. We are also currently working with Oracle on final grade exchange back into SAIP. Once implemented, Student, Course and Enrolment records can be automatically provisioned on Moodle from SAIP without any human intervention. Gateway eliminates the need for custom integration scripts, unofficial workarounds or repetitive typing when sharing information between Campus Solutions and Moodle. This can be done in a “live” way, or in a batch way, if you are able to take extracts from PeopleSoft. Gateway can then process the XML directly into Moodle. (See our video for a demonstration of “live” provisioning.) If you need to provision hundreds of courses at once, Gateway can process that from a SAIP extract rather than ‘live’. We can also provide additional customisations – for example if you wish to combine or edit fields that come from PeopleSoft. We have not yet tested the export of non English names/characters. If this is likely to be a requirement, then this is something that we would wish to collaborate with you on.
What is required to perform an implementation?
You will need Campus Solutions with SAIP at bundle 29 or later (ideally 33). Our software is typically deployed as a Virtual Machine. It provides a number of endpoints for SAIP to send messages to (which need to be configured in CS: setup SACR->Product Related->SA Integration Pack->web service targets). The user also needs to deploy a couple of small Moodle plugins to their Moodle; although we mostly use Moodle’s APIs, we did need some extensions. The user will need to set up a webservice user in Moodle, and provide access keys for some of the Moodle APIs. We provide a configuration guide for our software and Moodle so that you can see exactly what is required. Then, on our software, the user connects to the configuration web application and enters details for their Moodle (service keys etc). They can do a little more configuration, or they could work with us for more customisation, but this is not a necessity. Users can also opt to take SAIP extracts of data and run imports via the command line, rather than using SAIP in “live mode”. (Alternatively, our software can also be deployed as independent components, in which case you would need to put up a database and servlet container and deploy the individual webapps. It is easier just to use the Virtual Machine.)
What Moodle customisations are needed?
We have designed the software to be minimally invasive into Moodle. We use Moodle’s own APIs for the operations that Gateway performs. You will need to install a couple of Moodle plugins to add some extra functions. Inside Moodle, you will need to do some configuration (e.g. of a web service user and some token generation for the services).
How easy is it for a PeopleSoft team to do the integration?
We recommend that someone with a Linux/Moodle skillset undertakes the installation. We provide full documentation for installation and supply the software as a Virtual Machine.
How long does it take to implement?
Out of the box, the Gateway takes the data from SAIP and injects it into Moodle without any further processing. We map fields from the SAIP message to fields in the Moodle structure. There is a degree of inbuilt configurability which means that we usually get a site started in a few hours. However, if a site then wants data going into Moodle to be customized – say taking data from several parts of the SAIP message and then combining them, putting some in upper case, removing the trailing zero etc, then it takes longer. We are happy to review your data and advise.
What support do you provide?
The initial fee (see costs below) provides free support to assist you to get up and running. We also offer a support/update package, within which we investigate and fix bugs and provide updates as required. We can also provide additional development and local customisations which are quoted separately once we have an understanding of your requirements.
What does it cost?
An installation for an educational institution is provided at a one-off payment for a single Gateway on a single machine. We also offer annual support and upgrades within minor version numbers of Moodle and the LIS specification. Pricing is tiered according to the number of students. Prices range between £7,000 and £25,000 USD. Annual support and upgrades are offered at 15% of the initial fee.
Who else is using Gateway for Moodle?
Gateway for Moodle & SAIP has been successfully tested by North Dakota University System. Read the case study to find out more.