The SpeechAce plugin for Moodle allows you to integrate speech recognition technology directly in to Moodle. The following sub sections outline the process for enabling SpeechAce in your Moodle installation.
1.1.Setup HTTPS/SSL for your Moodle Server
Before you begin using Speechace, please enable HTTPS on your Moodle site by installing an SSL certificate.
Enabling SSL on your Moodle server increases security for your users and also gives them a better audio recording experience. That’s because Speechace uses native HTML5 recording for Secure sites (HTTPS) which spares users the pain of installing and configuring flash just to record audio from the browser.
All modern Browsers will call out whether sites are insecure and you don’t want your users to see this when they go to login to your Moodle server
Rather you want them to see the green secure sign to know you are properly securing their login credentials and session information.
Scroll to the middle of the page to select an appropriate package for your Moodle installation and click on Buy Now button.
Next, fill out your personal information and click on the Buy Now button as shown below:
Next, fill out your billing information and click Subscribe.
1.3.Install the Speechace for Moodle plugin
After clicking subscribe on the payment page, you should receive an email similar to the one below:
Click on the URL to download the SpeechAce plugin in .zip file format and your unique subscription activation key.
Now go to your Moodle plugin installation page using the below hierarchy:
Home -> Site administration -> Plugins -> Install plugins
Upload the SpeechAce plugin as shown in the picture below:
Click on Show more link and select plugin type as Question type as highlighted in the red box below:
In case you get the following error message:
Plugin type location /var/www/html/moodle/question/type is not writable
You have two options:
1 . You may either request your system administrator to make the moodle/question/type directory writeable or
2 . You may unzip the SpeechAce.zip plugin file that you downloaded and copy it directly to your Moodle installation under the <Moodle root folder>/question/type directory.
Next click on the Install plugin from zip file button to install the plugin.
1.4.Configure the Speechace Activation key
Once the plugin is installed, please configure the activation key obtained from your SpeechAce profile page as follows:
Browse to the Plugins overview page using the following path on your Moodle server:
Home -> Site administration -> Plugins -> Plugins overview
Locate the link to the SpeechAce question type by searching for the term “SpeechAce” on the page and click on the “Settings” link as shown in the red box below:
Now, enter your activation key in the Product Key box and click Save Changes button.
At this point you can also change the default dialect Speechace uses to score audio and provide reference audio. You can still override this default for each question.
That completes the SpeechAce for Moodle plugin installation process.
The SpeechAce Moodle plugin works well with all mobile devices.
For Android devices, please use the Chrome browser on Android.
For iOS/Apple devices such as iPhone/iPad/iPod, SpeechAce works with Safari browser on iOS 11.
2.How To Use the Speechace question type
The following sections explain how you may use the SpeechAce plugin for Moodle to help your students in improving their pronunciation.
2.1.Creating a Moodle quiz that allows students to read and practice their speaking skills
The SpeechAce question type plugin allows you to create pronunciation practice activities. The following paragraphs demonstrate how to create a Moodle quiz that contains SpeechAce question types.
First, let us use the standard Moodle interface to create a Moodle quiz:
Now click on the Quiz link as shown in the red box below to add questions:
Now click on the Edit Quiz button as shown below:
Now click the Add button to add SpeechAce questions as shown below:
Now click on + a new question menu option as shown below:
Now select SpeechAce question type as shown below and click the Add button
Now you should see a SpeechAce question type editing page as shown in the image below. We have marked various page elements in purple to indicate their function.
Now, let us say you want your students to practice the phrase “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog”. So fill out the various fields as shown in the picture below:
Now scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the Save Changes button shown below to save the question and finish editing.
You may also click the Preview button shown above to review the question. For the above question, you may observe the following preview:
2.2.Create a Moodle quiz that allows students to listen and practice speaking what they heard
First review the steps on creating a read and pronounce SpeechAce question type as listen in section 2.1
Now before saving the question, select When SpeechAce score is shown for the Show Answer Text field as shown in the red box in the picture below.
Now click the Save Changes and continue editing button and then the Preview button at the bottom of the screen to see the result as shown below
After clicking the Preview button, you should see that the text “The quiz brown fox jumped over the lazy dog” is not shown in the question. This allows students to only hear the audio and prevents them from reading the answer. Teachers have found that such listen and speak exercises are better for students because they cannot simply read out the response but have to understand what they heard in the reference audio.
2.3.Listening to student audio via grade reports
As a teacher, you may go to the Moodle course grade report and review student pronunciation scores and listen to their audio as shown in the screens below.
First go to the course page where you have create pronunciation improvement exercises using the SpeechAce question type and select a quiz as highlighted using the red box in the picture below:
Now click on the Attempts link as shown in the picture below:
Now click on the Review Attempt link for a specific student to review their audio and scores for a particular attempt:
Now you may listen to the specific student’s audio by clicking on the blue play button as shown below:
3.Usage and Billing
The Speechace Moodle plugin is licensed based on the number of active moodle users. If you surpass the included number of user licenses you will be billed for the additional users.
Active Users: An active user is a moodle user who answers at least one Speechace question within the billing period. Therefore not all moodle users, or users enrolled in a course are necessarily active.
Billing Period: The Speechace Moodle plans have a billing period of 12-months. Unique Active users are counted from the start to the end of the 12-month subscription period and in each subsequent renewed 12-month period
Custom plans: If you are interested in a monthly billing period please contact us at email@example.com
Usage reports: You can request an interim usage report by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm your license usage.
3.1.How to control usage
You can control the number of users who access speechace by limiting enrollment to Moodle courses which have Speechace activities.