1. The decision to implement Amanote
The decision to implement Amanote at Sup'Biotech was motivated by an analytical approach and by listening to students. The pedagogical team identified that PDF files were widely used as course materials and by surveying students on their note-taking habits they noticed that the tools available (OneNote) were not adapted.
Using analytics to monitor the use of Moodle by our students and teachers, we noticed that PDF files were being used extensively as course materials and that students were downloading them to their computers, which posed the problem of note taking. We knew that the tools available to students were not suited to taking notes on PDF files, and this intuition proved to be correct when we surveyed our students about how they took notes and used the downloaded files on their computers.
Moodle integration, ease of use and versatility
Amanote was the ideal choice for Sup'Biotech because of its excellent integration with Moodle and its user-friendly ergonomics, providing an efficient and easy-to-use note-taking solution for students.
We first looked for a note-taking plugin for Moodle and easily found Amanote, which appealed to us for several reasons. First of all, its perfect integration in Moodle (SSO, with storage of annotated files in the student's personal Moodle space and an API that links to Amanote) but also its ease of use and versatility (possibility to take both handwritten and typed notes, to position markers to annotate, to write equations etc).
Amanote vs OneNote
Amanote stands out from OneNote by offering a smoother PDF note-taking experience that is better suited to an academic setting.
We initially proposed OneNote, which has the advantage of being versatile and synchronized with OneDrive. At first glance, it's the ideal tool for note taking, but with use, we realized that it was more complex to use in an academic setting: course materials are often large, they sometimes change, and importing files is sometimes tedious. Amanote responds well to these problems.
In addition, Amanote means that students do not need to file their files: they are automatically filed in Amanote, according to the name of the file and the course in which it appears. Note-taking files are accessible either in Amanote or directly in Moodle. This saves a lot of time for revisions, but also when starting up the computer in class, the student can quickly get to work.
Finally, by supporting versioning (detection of changes in the PDF that is the subject of a note), the student no longer has to modify -sometimes tediously- his note-taking files with each version change of the course materials.
2. Independent adoption of the tool
The implementation of Amanote at Sup'Biotech went smoothly. The pedagogical directors presented the tool during the back-to-school meetings and the digital learning unit had proposed an online training module with videos and tutorials beforehand. According to Maxime Cruzel, the use of Amanote came naturally, especially in the first year, where the school offers distance learning courses called MiMos (Micro Modules) to help students succeed in higher education. Amanote was integrated into this program, which helped students adopt it quickly.
The use of Amanote was self-evident, especially in the first year and then, by propagation, to other courses.
3. Amanote considered a "Quick-Win" for the student learning experience
Amanote is considered a "quick-win" for the student learning experience at Sup'Biotech. Maxime Cruzel explains that the tool is part of the solutions that have an immediate impact on teaching thanks to its ergonomics, its integration with the LMS and its response to a strong student problem. He explains
Amanote, like Wooclap, did not pose any difficulty in terms of appropriation; the tools naturally spread throughout the school. Our role is limited to helping students discover the tool when necessary and eventually presenting case studies to make their use more concrete.
4. Would you recommend Amanote to your colleagues in other organizations?
Yes, without hesitation.
Maxime Cruzel does not hesitate to recommend Amanote to other institutions. According to him, the tool is particularly well suited to meet the challenges of the future.