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Literature Review

In the study paper, Moodle has been identified as the knowledge management (KM) tool to be analysed and discussed. In the meanwhile, modern education systems over the world have effectively utilised virtual learning platforms that have contributed towards hybrid education system (Momani, 2010). Precisely, the Moodle is an open source knowledge management tool that has been considered by many of the universities to increase the efficiency of online-based distance education course. As a KM tool, Moodle has solved a number of issues for the users as potential users of the KM tool can modify the components of the tool according to their needs. In the underlying figure, the Moodle demonstration site has been presented as follows:

Figure: Moodle Demonstration Site

Source: (, 2017)

In the discussion study, a critical review of relevant literature on one of the themes of Moodle i.e. learning management system has been described. Furthermore, the study uses Nonaka and Takeuchi’s SECI model to elaborate how effectively Moodle has contributed to knowledge creation and knowledge sharing. Evidently, the study provides a critical discussion on the selected KM tool to support the argument established in the paper. Lastly, the research of the KM tool evaluates whether Moodle supports Big Data regarding knowledge sharing and knowledge management.

Invariably, Moodle stands for Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment that is an online based learning and course management system. In 2002, Moodle emerged as knowledge and learning management and sharing tool for the online learning group of people (Momani, 2010). Understandably, the open source KM tool, Moodle has been widely implemented within the higher education system in the most of the developed and emerging countries to increase the potentiality of the online education system. In terms of academic benefits, Moodle offers an extensively used theme i.e. learning management system for the potential users (Kumar, 2011). The free online-based course management system has provided e-learning interactive to the students fostering social interaction and self-motivation. The cloud-based knowledge sharing and management platform empower skill-based learning programmes to the target audience enhancing the learning culture. Moreover, Moodle stimulates the experience of the learners connecting the learning outcomes to the eventual learning goals (Kampa, 2017). In the meanwhile, the interface of the system allows the user to set up instructions in an effortless manner.

Researchers and scholars have identified that the theme of learning management system encompasses with arranging, documenting, tracking, and reporting of significant training programmes or education courses. Decisively, all the following components are supported by Moodle. In terms of knowledge management, Davenport and Volpel (2001) have agreed that managing knowledge can be defined as a higher level understanding including specific properties. Hence, to absorb and share certain knowledge a standard and organised platform will be important. Moreover, in learning management, conversion of knowledge from information can be identified as an integral part. Therefore, Moodle offers the perfect platform and resources so that users can convert the information into knowledge encouraging the knowledge management attributes.  However, knowledge management experts have different views on classifying knowledge in learning management. Meanwhile, three knowledge dimensions i.e. individual-collective knowledge, component-architectural knowledge, and private-public knowledge have been identified by Chua (2002). Based on the definite versions of knowledge, the learning management theme of Moodle has been worked out.

Critical Review of Moodle

Konstantinidis et al. (2011) described what the leading factors are to be considered before selection of a learning management system. In the study, the scholars discovered that a learning management system must include content in an organised way so that users can learn all the time and track their progress as well. On the other hand, Joh (2015) assessed the risk associated with eLearning management system such as Moodle. Evidently, the researcher identified that due to open source, online learning management system can pose threat to the contents used by the users. Preferably, security of data and information can be identified as an issue in eLearning management system. In the current education system, distance learners and education institutes have concerned about the acceptance of web-based learning management system. In their research study, Martins and Kellermanns (2004) elaborated the factors influencing the potential users to consider eLearning management tools. Precisely, easy accessibility and organised support system have encouraged the users to accept web-based course.

In another review of literature, Kumar (2011) discussed the effectiveness of e-learning using learning management system tools. Modern educational institutes have preferred open-source eLearning tools so that students can access to the information system to gather and share knowledge related to their course. Furthermore, the internet-oriented knowledge management platform provides the scope for the students to accumulate knowledge from a single knowledge distribution system. Effectively, the storage system of the eLearning platform will influence the users to develop skills and required knowledge related to the course from any place and time (Ostroukh et al., 2014). Thus, the internet of things has been included in knowledge management system to increase the knowledge resources for the users across the globe.

In this section of the study, the components of Moodle have been critically reviewed following the SECI Model of Knowledge Dimensions invented by Nonaka and Takeuchi (1995). The identified model can be recognised as the cornerstone for knowledge creation and sharing. Evidently, the introduction of the concepts such as explicit knowledge and tactic knowledge has become revolutionary in the KM literature. Precisely, Nonaka and Takeuchi (1995) proposed SECI Model of Knowledge Dimensions involves four different types of knowledge that can be created, combined, and transferred to others. As shown in the underlying figure, the SECI model delivers a clear knowledge to understand how knowledge is created and shared from one source to another as described below.  

Figure: SECI Model of Knowledge Dimensions

Source: (Nonaka and Takeuchi, 1995)

In order to share and acquire the best set of knowledge, the significant modes of knowledge exchange have been analysed herein below:

  1. Tactic to Tactic (Socialisation): the identified dimension of knowledge elaborated social interaction as the method of tactic to tactic knowledge sharing. In this way, knowledge can be transferred through face-to-face meets or hands-on experience (Nonaka and Takeuchi, 1995). Due to socialisation, a person can gather and share tactic knowledge that can be complicated to formalise at times. Moodle fits the criteria of the knowledge mode to become a useful KM tool.
  2. Tactic to Explicit (Externalisation): By articulating and publishing knowledge to the external agents, tactic to explicit knowledge can be transferred. Through externalisation of knowledge, the leading developing factors associated to the learning management can be evaluated. For instance, Moodle offers written documents, theoretical concepts, and valid images to the potential users so that communication and interaction will be encouraged (Nonaka, Toyama and Konno, 2000). In this way, tactic knowledge is transformed into explicit knowledge contributing towards knowledge creation.
  3. Explicit to Explicit (Combination): Invariably, explicit knowledge can be transformed to the same by combination technique i.e. integrating and organising knowledge sources. For instance, by using computerised communication channels and large-scale database such as cloud based learning management system can be effective to support such form of knowledge conversion. In case of Moodle, knowledge is collected from the significant dimensions and then it is shared, edited, and developed to create new knowledge.
  4. Explicit to Tactic (Internalisation): Lastly, transformation of knowledge from explicit to tactic by internalisation should be provided. In this mode, receiver receives the knowledge through learning and applied the form of knowledge according to the requirement (Nonaka, Toyama and Konno, 2000). Precisely, such instrumental knowledge form will become an asset for any individual or enterprise. Moodle records the collective reflection of the users and understands the patterns of learning of the potential users to influence their concepts, ideas, and thinking capabilities.

Moodle is a miscellaneous and powerful knowledge management system that can be used by the teachers to effectively map out and manipulate its functions to develop their assignments, lessons and quizzes (for example, writing and reading). Moodle automatically keeps the log reports for every student’s work that helps the teacher to not only know when the student has submitted the task, but also how much time has been taken by the student to complete the assigned task (Dwi, 2014). Additionally, Moodle helps the teachers to set timeframes for every task and restrict the submission of the assignment after the deadline has passed. Both the teachers and students can trace their weekly and daily quizzes and assignments by moving the cursor over a given date (Barnawi, 2009). Hence, it can be seen that Moodle is an interactive communication and management tool that can be used by both the teachers and students to increase quality, effectiveness, accuracy, reliability, collaboration, communication and accountability. Furthermore, please consider the figure given below for better understanding:


Figure: Student data in Learning Management System

Source: (Moodle News, 2016)

One of the key features of Moodle is that the KM tool is enormously adaptable and flexible in nature. The system can be incorporate in different ways depending upon the needs and capabilities of the organisation. Moodle allows both teachers and students to add contents that lead to knowledge creation among the users. Furthermore, Moodle allows the teachers to use a wide range of assessment strategies (Wu, 2008). For instance, the teachers can use quiz module and assignments to examine the progress of the students. Additionally, Brandle (2005) said that the workshop module can also be used by the teachers to assess the progress of the students and provide them with practical knowledge over a subject. Hence, Moodle helps to trace the performance of the students in order to observe the efficiency of knowledge capture and knowledge sharing in the course.

Moreover, Moodle act as a platform for cooperative learning as it has been designed keeping in mind the social constructivist learning perspective. Moodle provides useful tools such as forums, chats, blogs, Wikis, and workshops to promote cooperative learning. Hence, the teachers can use Moodle as a platform to implement different formats of social collaboration and interaction in their teaching (Horvat et al., 2013). For example, students can be divided into small groups, who can interact with each other over the chats and engage in asynchronous discussions in forums and Wikis. Furthermore, the teachers can save those chats for future references (Barnawi, 2009). The interaction between the students helps to create, capture and share knowledge among each other that further helps in achieving the objective of the Moodle as a knowledge management tool. Hence, it can be seen that Moodle can be effectively used as a learning management system that promotes collaborative learning and sharing of knowledge with the users.

Another important feature of Moodle is that it allows the users to participate in online collaborative feedback tasks. For instance, the students can provide comments on a particular work and share their knowledge with each other to improve the peace of literature. Moodle without any doubt is an excellent online based collaborative feedback community that allows the students to easily communicate with one another and share their writings online with the teachers and peers (Barnawi, 2009). Furthermore, Moodle provides a dynamic environment to both the students and teachers to interact with one-another, get/give support, and build understanding through negotiation and discussion about gaps and ways to improve knowledge.

Students provide their feedbacks on draft documents to express their knowledge. For example, one student good in recognising structural problems in logic or content may share a particular feedback. However, a student with knowledge to recognise form problems such as grammatical errors will provide a separate set of feedback (Raman et al., 2014). Hence, Moodle as a knowledge management tool promotes critical thinking and allows the users to create, capture and share knowledge. In other words, the feedback provided by one student will help another student to improve their knowledge and in return the second student will also share his or her knowledge with the community (Beatty and Ulasewicz, 2016).

Currently, it can be seen that Moodle has been widely used by major Universities across the globe such as Australian National University, California State University, and others. Moodle act as a knowledge management tool that provides an extensive platform to the teachers and learners by developing a global community (Raman et al., 2014). Currently, the free online-based course management system has been widely used as an e-learning tool to create knowledge for the student, capture their knowledge learning progress and share more knowledge among the students.

Moodle can be used an online learning platform to support the knowledge needs of the student. Moreover, there are several Universities that use Moodle as a knowledge management tool to share information with the students regarding their module and keep track of the student’s activities. The number of student in a University is huge and Moodle acts as an online community by maintaining a separate account for each student and teachers (Qwaider, 2011). Hence, it can be seen that Moodle can be used to support Big Data. According to Peter Dobinson (2017), Moodle is primarily used by the Universities to optimise learning outcomes. Moodle automatically keeps the log reports of the student’s activities that help the teachers to evaluate the progress of the learners. The teachers can make use of e-learning reports and learning analytics to understand the progress of the learners and ensure that the objectives of the courses are met (Xu and Mahenthiran, 2016). A figure has been presented herein below for better understanding: 

Figure: Learning Analytics in Moodle

Source: (Liu, 2016)

It can be seen from the above figure that the big data available from Moodle can be used to analyse the progress of the learners. Plug-in tools can be used to create learning analytics report using the big data available in the Moodle based knowledge management system. The big data available from Moodle helps to evaluate the learning system and set goals according to the outcomes of the analytics report (Qwaider, 2011). Therefore, it can be clearly seen that Moodle supports big data that helps the organisations to analyse the progress of the learning management system implemented to create, capture and share knowledge. Furthermore, it helps the organisation to make changes it in teaching and learning system to improve the outcomes for the learners.


On the basis of the above analysis, it can be seen that Moodle is a widely used online knowledge management tool that helps to create, capture and share knowledge. Moodle is based on an learning management system theme that enables the users to participate in new courses and increase their knowledge on a particular subject. Moodle supports exchange of knowledge through socialisation, externalisation, combination and internationalisation that makes it one of the widely used knowledge management tool across the globe. Moodle helps the students to provide their views regarding a task that leads to sharing of knowledge. Additionally, Moodle acts as a global community for learners to promote creation and exchange of knowledge. Moreover, Moodle supports big data and provides learning analytics reports to the users to observe the progress of the learners and check whether the learning program achieve its objectives or not. Conclusively, Moodle can be termed as one of the best online knowledge management tools available in the market due to the benefit of free knowledge sharing within a large community of learners.


Barnawi, O. (2009). Use Your Noodle to Learn Moodle: How Moodle can help Saudi Arabian universities create online communities for collaboration, learning and social knowledge management. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning. [online] Available at: [Accessed Sep. 2017].

Beatty, B. and Ulasewicz, C. (2016). Faculty Perspectives on Moving from Blackboard to the Moodle Learning Management System. TechTrends, 50(4), pp.36-45.

Chua, A. (2002). Taxonomy of Organizational Knowledge. Singapore Management Review, 24 (2), p. 69-76.

Davenport, T.and Volpel, S.C. (2001). The Rise of Knowledge toward Attention Management. Journal of Knowledge Management, 5 (3), p. 212-221.

Dobinson, P. (2017). To Master Big Data, Start Small: A Moodle Learning Analytics Talk. [online] Moodle News. Available at: [Accessed Sep. 2017].

Dwi, H. (2014). The Evaluation of a Moodle Based Adaptive e-Learning System. International Journal of Information and Education Technology, pp.89-92.

Horvat, A., Dobrota, M., Krsmanovic, M. and Cudanov, M. (2013). Student perception of Moodle learning management system: a satisfaction and significance analysis. Interactive Learning Environments, 23(4), pp.515-527.

Joh, H. (2015). Quantitative Risk Assessment in Moodle Learning Management System. International Journal of Software Engineering and Its Applications, 9(8), pp.253-262.

Kampa, R. (2017). Bridging the gap: integrating the library into Moodle learning management system a study. Library Hi Tech News, 34(4), pp.16-21.

Konstantinidis, A., Papadopoulos, P., Tsiatsos, T. and Demetriadis, S. (2011). Selecting and Evaluating a Learning Management System. International Journal of Distance Education Technologies, 9(3), pp.13-30.

Kumar, N. (2011). Effectiveness of E-Learning Through Learning Management System. Indian Journal of Applied Research, 4(5), pp.340-341.

Liu, D. (2016). An enhanced learning analytics plugin for Moodle: Student engagement and personalised intervention.

Martins, L. and Kellermanns, F. (2004). A Model of Business School Students' Acceptance of a Web-Based Course Management System. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 3(1), pp.7-26.

Momani, A. (2010). Comparison between Two Learning Management Systems: Moodle and Blackboard. SSRN Electronic Journal.

Momani, A. (2010). Comparison between Two Learning Management Systems: Moodle and Blackboard. SSRN Electronic Journal.

Moodle News. (2016). Learning Analytics Roadmap: IntelliBoard For Moodle Student Data Empowerment [LAR Series #2]. [online] Available at: [Accessed Sep. 2017]. (2017). Moodle - Open-source learning platform | [online] Available at: [Accessed Sep. 2017].

Nonaka, I. and Takeuchi, H. (1995). The knowledge creating company: how Japanese companies create the dynamics of innovation. 1st ed. New York: Oxford University Press.

Nonaka, I., Toyama, R. and Konno, N. (2000). SECI, Ba and Leadership: a Unified Model of Dynamic Knowledge Creation. Long Range Planning, 33(1), pp.5-34.

Ostroukh, A., Blinova, V., Skvortsova, T., Nikonov, V., Ivanova, I. and Morozova, T. (2014). Enhancement of Testing Process in Learning Management System Moodle. Asian Journal of Applied Sciences, 7(7), pp.568-580.

Qwaider, W. (2011). Integrated of Blended Learning System (BLs) and Knowledge Management System. International Journal for e-Learning Security, 1(2), pp.89-95.

Raman, A., Don, Y., Khalid, R. and Rizuan, M. (2014). Usage of Learning Management System (Moodle) among Postgraduate Students: UTAUT Model. Asian Social Science, 10(14).

Xu, H. and Mahenthiran, S. (2016). Factors that Influence Online Learning Assessment and Satisfaction: Using Moodle as a Learning Management System. International Business Research, 9(2), p.1.

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