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Harold's OpenSource Learning Blog

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Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
12:11 Atlantic
What Open Source learning system would you like to test?

A partner of mine, who previously worked in customer support for a proprietary LCMS, is experimenting with a new line of business. He wants to take 3-5 OSS learning systems, put them on his servers, and create courses etc, on each system. He intends to become familiar with these systems in order to offer third-party support services, for a fee. We will publish our findings on this board, for free, to help anyone make an acquisition decision.

I will help him with the system evaluations, as I've evaluated a number of proprietary systems over the past five years. I recently helped an academic client select a new LCMS, and the single open source system on the short list fared very well.

Between the two of us, we will show the pros and cons of various systems, without hype, and without being radical "open source or nothing" advocates.

We have installed ATutor, a Canadian system, for starters. I like the interface, and am impressed that it's SCORM and IMS compliant. We'll keep you informed on progress.

We would like to know what other systems you want us to look at. Please post your requests to this board, and tell us what fonctions or types of test would most interest you. We will focus on what you cannot find out on the user forums. Also, if you have some content that you would like to test on ATutor, you can email me at: harold at jarche dot com.
Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
07:52 Atlantic
Have your cake and eat it too

Sun announces support to OpenOffice.org users. Now you can use OSS, and have world class support too. LCMS/LMS vendors beware!

Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
14:47 Atlantic

Updated list of OSS platforms for education. This is a good starting point for those looking into OSS for an academic type of application. There is a heavy reliance on the Edutools site information, and I suggest that you get your information from more than one source, including this one.

Edited 18-12-2003 17:40
Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
17:22 Atlantic

This is a new PHP-based course management system, from Tarrant County College Center for Distance Learning of Fort Worth, Tx. A cursory shows that it's not different from many other course-based platforms. A more unique feature though, is the relationship with a professional services company - http://www.tapinternet.com - for product support. TAP Internet was the co-developer of LogiCampus, and the base program LogiCreate. You can get LogiCampus for free, and buy support when you need it. I think that this is the future business model for e-learning technologies; and the most dynamic communities (developers, users, and support staff) will survive in the long run.

Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
15:37 Atlantic
Test & Survey Tools
I was recently asked if I knew of any open source tools for survey/test creation. I didn't, but I did a quick check of Source Forge and came up with some tools and some that incorporate these features. I'm sure that there are more, and would appreciate any first-hand reports.

"Tiki is a powerful CMS/Groupware. Features: article, forum, newsletter, blog, file/image gallery, wiki, drawing, tracker, directory, poll/survey & quiz, FAQ, chat, banner, webmail, calendar, category, ACL, etc in Single Sign-on or LDAP.(PHP/MySQL/Smarty)"

"PHP scripts to let non-technical users create surveys, administer surveys, gather results, view statistics. All managed online after database initialization. MySQL database backend."

"Socrates is a Java based questionnaire/survey engine and wizard, that enables fast delivery of questionnaires to the web. Socrates is an API, with a thin servlet layer, so that it can be used in other applications."

Some of these are in Beta, so you'll have to check them out in detail.

I've also used Zoomerang for surveys, and you can get a limited licence for free. It's been around for a few years and is pretty solid. It's my choice for quick surveys:
Deleted by author 27-02-2004 17:51
Pat Sutton
14:43 Atlantic
I am looking for an opensource Learning Management System which tracks student activity, records scores etc. I tried ATutor, it seemed to be mainly course management - could not find a tracking module. Any suggestions?
Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
14:14 Atlantic
Hi Pat;
I'm not quite sure what you're looking for in terms of tracking functions, but the EduTools site groups all of the open source systems, and then you can check for certain features: http://www.edutools.info/course/compare/by...roducts.jsp?group=2
I know that Moodle has received many good reviews, but I have only evaluated Atutor in depth. There are some other evaluations posted on this board as well.
Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
22:10 Atlantic
Some more open source alternatives:

The GIMP is a GNU Image Manipulation Program, as a possible alternative to Photoshop - http://www.gimp.org/

You don't really need this if you have OpenOffice, but PDFCreator is a free tool to create PDFs easily from nearly any application - http://sector7g.wurzel6-webdesign.de/pdfcreator/

Dia is a possible replacement for Visio, but the website looks a bit messy - http://hans.breuer.org/dia/
Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
17:52 Atlantic
I now have a weblog incorporated with my website, which is where I will be posting new items.

Edited 15-03-2006 11:54
  Messages 39-40 deleted by author between 08-12-2005 07:07 AM and 05-02-2005 04:48 PM
Harold JarchePerson was signed in when posted
22:04 Atlantic
Just started a Squidoo lens on the same subject, open source for learning - http://www.squidoo.com/opensource4learning/
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