Ever wondered how would language localization affect a Moodle powered online educational site with more than 38,000 active users?
We all know Moodle—the FLOSS CMS/LMS (a.k.a. e-learning software platform)—was first baked all the way in Australia. And you could see that Moodle was Australian at heart long before it grew to be the large international community that it is today.
One of these Australian fingerprints is the language it chooses to speak… err… spell.
The language pack installed and used by default by Moodle is English (en) and it prefers the British English spelling over the American English one.
No big deal, you might say. Well, the numbers can decide, so let's take a specific example: BigDataUniversity.com.
Big Data University—the online educational site about big data—has more than 38,000 users (at the time of writing). Registering, they follow free big data-related courses on subjects from Hadoop Fundamentals to Streams Computing or to Text Analytics.
Quite the vibrant, diverse community, and it's all powered by Moodle.
One detail worth noting: more than 1 out of 4 users are from US. Now imagine the number of users that were eager to enroll in a course, only to find enrolment options… and how many emails reporting the enrol vs. enroll "misspelling" we got so far.
The elegant way to change enrol to enroll
The elegant solution is to change the default language pack used by Moodle:
- Install the English - United States (en_us) language pack in
Settings » Site administration » Language » Language packs.
- Set the new language pack as the default language for the site via
Settings » Site administration » Language » Language settings.
Note that this change will only affect the new accounts, while existing users will retain their language setting. If they want to use American English, they can change it in
Settings » My profile settings » Edit profile » Preferred language
- …and it works!
Sometimes it's the small details that will make your users happy.