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Which browser is best for online learning?

A series I’ve been wanting to write forever…

If you spend a lot of your time online, working with LMS’s such as Moodle, Blackboard, and others, then the browser is one of your VITA tools – it’s the equivalent of a mechanic having a good spanner/wrench and screwdrivers.

So why do so many teachers “just use what they use” without investigating options?

I this it’s often because they don’t step back and give themselves time to think, and try different browsers. Everyone, not just teachers, often do not appreciate the differences between browsers, the functionality, or even issues like the privacy and political dimensions at work.

Browsers can easily be installed and used side-by-side, and I would encourage you to install and try the browser discussed each month, to build up your level of experience and understanding.

On my laptop and desktop I often use 3 browsers consecutively when working on Moodle sites – one logged in as an Administrator, one using a Teacher account, and one as a test Student account. This makes site configuration and course development really fast – I never have to login and logout to test things – it’s just a case of clicking on a different browser, and hitting refresh!

I often have two more additional browsers active – one for person use – personal banking site, Facebook, Twitter, etc. and another for general web searching, and work-related operations.

So, I am going to document aspects of working with the following major browsers (primarily with Moodle) – most of which you should recognise, at least by name, and some you may not be aware of … yet 😉

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Apple Safari
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Google Chrome
  • Chromium
  • Brave
  • Opera / Opera Mobile
  • SRWare Iron
  • Vivaldi
  • Notable others

It’s important to understand that not all browsers run on all Operating Systems.

Firefox, Chrome / Chromium, Edge, Brave and Opera work on all major Operating Systems. Internet Explorer only works on Microsoft’s platform, and Safari only works on Apple’s platform.

If you don’t use Apple devices, you will never use Safari. Simple.

The mobile version of Safari is pre-installed on Apple’s mobile devices, whilst many Android devices come with a pre-installed browser (usually Chrome based), but often somewhat modified by the manufacturer for the device.

Stuart Mealor
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Stuart Mealor

Stuart is interested in all things e-learning, with specific interests in Moodle, e-learning strategy, and business development. His experience in education over 30 years, MBA in International Business, and knowledge of e-learning systems implementation, together with graphic design background, give him a unique skill set for e-learning projects.

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