Open-source platform Open EdX, an initiative of online education provider edX, has announced the platform’s availability on the Amazon Web Services Marketplace for free. The education and research product supports course management and offers authoring tools so that educators can develop courses that encourage the creation of “engaged online communities”.
The Bitnami powered package is a standard version of the Open edX platform that can host thousands of courses for a large number of users. Its availability on Amazon Web Services will enable academic institutions and other organizations to offer courses and training to their audiences. The collaboration means:
“[A]nyone in the world can begin building out their own learning platform using the agile AWS public cloud platform. . . . The edX actual software itself contains a plethora of tools that will help online educators present their courses using the cloud,” Erick Wingfield of CloudWedge.com says.
Bitnami is an open-source application packager and environment developer that edX has selected for making its package available through AWS. Erica Brescia, Bitnami COO said:
“Bitnami is committed to helping software providers embrace the movement to the cloud. We are excited to provide improved cloud capabilities for edX, while helping millions of people gain access to the platform that powers online learning.”
Open EdX is already used by institutions and educational organizations to reach their target audiences through digital learning opportunities.
At the moment, there are over 100 instances of Open EdX being used in twenty countries. In addition to the four million learners served on edx.org, hundreds of thousands of learners are currently taking 1,200 courses powered by Open edX.
While edX operators can use the platform to create an environment suited to their learners’ needs, they can also contribute extensions, translations and bug fixes back to the platform and so have the entire Open EdX ecosystem benefit and improve in the process.
“Now, greater numbers of individuals and institutions will be able to discover and access Open edX, which will help grow our open source community and ultimately accelerate improvements in the platform,” said edX Vice President of Product Beth Porter.
The immediate availability of the Open EdX platform in the Amazon Web Services means that educators can now build scalable education platforms that promote learning.
“We are delighted with Open edX, its ease of use and the possibilities it gives our teachers,” Professor Despujol, Universitat Politecnica de Valencia, Spain said. “We enjoy being a part of the thrilling open-source development community all over the world.
Although the Open Edx platform is available at no cost from the Amazon Web Services Marketplace, AWS usage fees apply.