Comparisons and advocacy

Case for Open Source Learning Platform

 
Picture of Chris Kenniburg
Case for Open Source Learning Platform
Particularly helpful MoodlersPlugin developers
I'd like to make the case for an open source learning platform.  We have been supporting and using Moodle since 2005ish within Dearborn Public Schools.  Why?  Because with an open source solution we have it running on our servers and we are in control of the tool without concerns of budget shortfalls or a company going out of business.  Many times K-12 school districts purchase an LMS solution and have funding for three years.  Then what?  Are you now going to tell your teachers using the LMS that the time is up?  Maybe there are funding issues that cause you to not be able to support the LMS moving forward.

Sure, with Moodle there are plugins that come and go but the core of the system is intact.  The teachers are not learning an entirely new platform each time the district comes up short with funding or the company raises prices and you are forced to look elsewhere.  

We are a K-12 district serving roughly 20,000 students.  Our learning platform consists of a fully integrated user experience with Moodle, Mahara portfolios, and Big Blue Button web conferencing.  We also utilize WIRIS, H5P, and a few other key plugins to enhance the learning content we can provide within Moodle.

As a huge added bonus to staff we have a plugin which integrates with our student information system and allows quick publishing of grades from Moodle to our MiStar SIS.

Check out the video to see a very quick overview of some of the capabilities an open source learning platform can provide.  



 
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Picture of Chris Kenniburg
Re: Case for Open Source Learning Platform
Particularly helpful MoodlersPlugin developers

Beyond finances and the ability to ensure longevity of the tool, I would like to point out the ability to share, collaborate, and control the learning environment.  

This empowers us to make the best possible solution for our teachers and students based on their feedback by installing plugins, customizing themes, and catering the learning environment to their needs.

Like all things, you have those who will fully utilize every ounce of power behind a LMS and those who are just scratching the surface.  Moodle can be setup to meet the needs of both types of users and everyone inbetween.

 
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