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  1. 1. OLAT - The Open Source LMS - 3.2009 v1.5
  2. 2. @2009 Copyright Some rights reserved! This document is copyright protected by the owners and companies listed below under the Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike Creative Commons license. For more information check: Responsible persons: • Joël Fisler (Overall), University of Zurich, MELS,
  3. 3. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Content 1. More Information About OLAT ......................................................................................................... 9 1.1. OLAT Feature List and Some Screenshots ................................................................................ 10 1.2. Future OLAT Development: Roadmap ...................................................................................... 13 1.3. OLAT Demo Server: Test OLAT Before Downloading It! ....................................................... 14 1.4. What users say about OLAT - From A to Z .............................................................................. 15 1.5. Who Uses OLAT? List of OLAT Installations .......................................................................... 20 1.6. Company Service ........................................................................................................................ 31 1.7. OLAT Download Material ......................................................................................................... 31 1.8. Short Overview of the History of OLAT ................................................................................... 33 1.9. OLAT 10 years movie ................................................................................................................ 33 1.10. Press .......................................................................................................................................... 33 2. Download the OLAT Software ......................................................................................................... 38 2.1. Release Notes ............................................................................................................................. 40 2.2. Documentation ............................................................................................................................ 42 2.3. Server Requirements: No Need for a High-End Server! ............................................................ 45 2.4. The OLAT Software License ..................................................................................................... 48 3. OLAT Community Services .............................................................................................................. 50 3.1. Mailing Lists for Developers, Translators, Users etc. ................................................................ 50 3.2. OLAT groups within social networks (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Xing, Ohloh) .................. 51 3.3. Developer Core Community (CoCo) Meetings .......................................................................... 56 3.4. OLAT User Day 2009: Friday, September 11th ........................................................................ 59 3.5. OLAT Conference 2008 ............................................................................................................. 59 3.6. Google Summer of Code ............................................................................................................ 62 4. Development: More Information for Developers .............................................................................. 67 4.1. Code samples .............................................................................................................................. 70 4.2. Incubation Process ...................................................................................................................... 70 4.3. Translations ................................................................................................................................. 71 5. OLAT Newsletter 2009 | no. 1 ......................................................................................................... 73 6. OLAT Search ..................................................................................................................................... 77 7. Sponsoring OLAT: Meet our sponsors ............................................................................................. 78 8. OLAT News-Archive ........................................................................................................................ 80 9. Getting OLAT Support ...................................................................................................................... 92 10. Glossary ........................................................................................................................................... 95 11. Bibliography .................................................................................................................................... 97 - 26.11.2009 1
  4. 4. OLAT - The Open Source LMS OLAT - The Open Source LMS Welcome to OLAT (Online Learning And Training), the web-based open source Learning Management System (LMS) 1 based on Java and completely free of charge. The development of OLAT started in 1999 at the University of Zurich [] , Switzerland, where it is the strategic learning management system and deployed on the main OLAT server [] . The University of Zurich leads the further development and provides a team [Page 92] of 12 developers pushing OLAT to the next level. NEWS: OLAT @ DevLearn 2009 (19.11.2009) OLAT was well represented at last weeks DevLearn conference and Expo. At the Expo the University of Zurich's booth, where Joël Fisler presented both OLAT and eLML, was well visited by people from higher education and from company representatives. Hardly anyone in the US had ever heard of OLAT Joël Fislers presentation @ DevLearn 2009 and so most people where even more surprised when they saw the live demo and the clean and easy to use interface. We did receive a lot of comments saying that at first impression OLAT seemed easier to use and more powerful than many commercial and open source learning management systems used within the US market. Joël Fisler attended also the demofest and the conference where he was able to hold a presentation about the tools followed by a lively discussion about open source tools in education. First cooperation plans 1 A Learning Management System (or LMS) is a software package, usually on a large scale (that scale is decreasing rapidly), that enables the management and delivery of learning content and resources to students. Most LMS systems are web-based to facilitate "anytime, anywhere" access to learning content and administration. Some famous open source LMS are OLAT and Moodle, famous commercial LMS are WebCT and Blackboard. - 26.11.2009 2
  5. 5. OLAT - The Open Source LMS with commercial companies and with a US university have been established and we will announce them on our website as soon as the deals are fixed. After visiting three conferences and expos in the US and Canada during the last month we feel optimistic that finally OLAT will start to become recognized and used in North America. OLAT 6.2.2 released! (11.11.2009) Recently we released the new version 6.2.2 - this is another maintenance release. For a full list of bugfixes and improvements check our Bug tracking System [] . Continue to the download section... [Page 38] Joël Fislers presentation @ AACE's E-Learn 2009 OLAT @ AACE's E-Learn 2009 (04.11.2009) OLAT was present at AACE's E-Learn 2009 conference [] in Vancouver in late October. Joël Fislers "best practice" presentation entitled "Creating, handling and implementing e-learning courses and content using the open source tools OLAT and eLML at the University of Zurich" covered both the content creation tool eLML and the open source LMS OLAT plus a short live demonstration. The conference offered up to 12 parallel session, so we are happy to have counted maybe 20 attendees at our session. A second OLAT demonstration was held two days later at a swap of ideas and open source tools between educators and IT specialists. Besides these presentation lots of informal talks and exchanging of ideas made the E-Learn 2009 in Vancouver a real success for the OLAT project. OLAT 6.2.1 released! (15.10.2009) The OLAT team has released OLAT 6.2.1 today. As usual for a maintenance release it contains some bug fixes and also some improvements: QTI editor provides now a table functionality, formatting issues with TinyMC and tests, forum preview, css default theme references files that do not exist, daily updated search index. Continue to the download section... [Page 38] - 26.11.2009 3
  6. 6. OLAT - The Open Source LMS TELearn participants visiting the OLAT booth. OLAT @ TELearn Taipei (13.10.2009) Considering the fact that OLAT has been translated to both traditional and simplified Chinese, it was about high time to get in touch with interested OLAT users and translators from the area. Participating in the TELearn (Technology Enhanced Learning) conference in Taipei seemed just about the right occasion to mingle with university members interested in LMS and open source software in general. We had many opportunities to talk about the features and functionalities of our LMS during the poster session and to get into touch with people visiting our small booth. We'd like to welcome new OLAT users and invite you to share your impressions as a OLAT newbie with our community. At the same time, subscribe to our newsletter [Page 73] and keep yourself posted! OLAT newsletter 2009 no. 1 (06.10.2009) OLAT grows continuously and so does the number of users and developers. This results in interesting news and information we want to share with you. So, here it is: the first OLAT newsletter [Page 73] . OLAT 6.2.0 public release available! (29.09.2009) As planned, the new version 6.2.0 is released today. Some major enhancements are done and a bulk of new features have been added: calendar import/export, new IMS-Content-Packages Editor, a TinyMC Editor Upgrade (e.g. formula editor), extended export function for grouplists and many more. For a full list of bug fixes and improvements check the release notes [Page 40] . Continue to download section [Page 38] ... - 26.11.2009 4
  7. 7. OLAT - The Open Source LMS eLML wins the CH Open Source Award 2009 (24.09.2009) On 23th September the 2nd CH Open Source Award was held during the "OpenExpo 2009" [http://] in Winterthur (Swiss). "eLML" [] won in the category 'Education Award'! With this price young talents are promoted, who are campaigning in a FOSS project. Check the CH Open Source Award Website [] for further information. So, the whole OLAT team cheers: Congratulations Joël!!! OLAT @ 21st Century Learning Conference | 17.-19.9.2009 (23.09.2009) This year's "21st Century Learning Conference" [] took place in Hong Kong and was about "Extending Tomorrow's Leader with Digital Learning". The conference was mainly attended by teachers and IT administrators of international schools from Asia and Oceania. OLAT seized the chance to be present in this area for the very first time. Even if the scope of the conference was rather broad, there were surprisingly many participants interested in OLAT, or in open source software in general. There was a vivid discussion about "E-learning and open source tools" during the Unconference session on Friday and a 45min presentation about "What is a LMS? What is OLAT?" held by Sandra Arnold-Roth. The audience was particularly impressed about the multilingual user interface - big thanks to our active translator community! First OLAT User Day was a success! (21.09.2009) The first OLAT User Day was held on September 11th at the University of Zurich. So far we can say: it was a success! The OLAT User Day gave the participants the opportunity to meet up others from the OLAT community. Just to come together, share ideas and to discuss matters of common interests. Main issues were the work with and on OLAT: Developers, authors and users were swapping ideas on workflows, problems, news and particularities the whole day through. The participant’s feedback was throughout positive. In some way special was the format, the User Day was held like. This yet young concept of an "unconference" [] - sessions can be proposed and are determined by vote - did work also very well. Besides preliminary proposed sessions, last-minute contributions been considered. All sessions and its minutes, as well as further information to the OLAT User Day can be accessed online: check the OLAT User Day Wiki [] . Last but not least: The first OLAT User Day also been the official celebration of the 10 years OLAT anniversary. OLAT User Day 2009: Registration open! (13.07.2009) As already announced in spring, the OLAT User Day will be held on September 11th, 2009, and you are kindly invited to participate. The OLAT User Day is an event where the OLAT community gathers together to exchange ideas. During the day, there will be kind of an „unconference“; in several sessions topics of common interests will be discussed. In the evening, we will celebrate the 10th anniversary of OLAT. For details, registration (until August 30th!), submitting a session proposal etc. check the OLAT User Day Wiki [] . New 'COMMUNITY' tab in OLAT website (25.05.2009) As most of you know, we did have a core community meeting two weeks ago at the University of Zurich in which also BPS, Frentix and the University of Hamburg (UHH) participated. The result of this very successful meeting was a detailed roadmap [Page 13] , a more concise incubation and publication process [Page 70] for new features and a core community meeting page [Page 56] with more information about the - 26.11.2009 5
  8. 8. OLAT - The Open Source LMS held presentations, photos, slides etc. Since there are more and more community events (OLAT Conference, OLAT User Day, Google Summer of Code etc.) we decided to introduce a new "Community" tab [Page 50] within the OLAT website. The "Community" section contains both existing and new pages. OLAT 6.1.1 public release (20.05.2009) Our first scalable 6.1 release needed some improvements and thus our first maintenance release 6.1.1 contains about 40 fixed Jira issues. The bug fixes include: • IMS QTI improvements • Layout-improvements and bug fixes for IE8 • Bug fixes within the user deletion workflow • Fixes due to problems with language codes that contain underscore (e.g. zh_tw) • Bug fixes concerning group management, WebDAV, Wiki, CSS etc. For a full list of bug fixes and improvements check the release notes [Page 40] . Continue to download section [Page 38] ... IMS Learning Impact 'Leadership Award' 2009 for OLAT for best open source learning platform (18.05.2009) At last week's IMS Learning Impact conference in Barcelona the Global Learning Consortium announced the results of the Impact Award competition [] . OLAT was awarded with a "Leadership Award" for "Best Open Source Learning Platform". The OLAT team is honored to have received such a unique award. A quote from the press release of IMS: "The LIA awards are unique in that they recognize the use of technology in context. Nominations include not only information about the technology but how it is used by an education provider. In addition, the entries are evaluated according to eight criteria of impact, including improving access to learning, improving affordability of learning, and improving the quality of learning." (IMS 2009) Starting in 2009 OLAT plans to become an IMS member and implement more IMS standards. Core Developer Meeting in Zurich (30.04.2009) Next week the OLAT core developers from the University of Zurich, Frentix GmbH, Bildungsportal Sachsen (BPS) and the University of Hamburg will meet for three days in Zurich to discuss issues about OLAT development, eAssessment, scalability, testing infrastructure and the OLAT roadmap. Besides that we will also integrate new features from our German partners into the main OLAT core during our "hackfest". We'll post the results of the three-day workshop on the OLAT website. If you're interested - 26.11.2009 6
  9. 9. OLAT - The Open Source LMS about the detailed schedule, download our PDF-information file [ CORE-COMMUNITY-TREFFEN.pdf] or contact Patrick Brunner, the head of our development team. Both the document and the workshop are held in German but the results will be published in English. OLAT is IMS Learning Impact Award 2009 finalist (22.04.2009) OLAT was chosen as a finalist for the IMS Learning Impact Award 2009 [ learningimpact2009/liafinalists2009.html] . On Monday, May 11th 2009 at 5pm Joël Fisler will present OLAT at the IMS Learning Impact conference [] in Barcelona. The conference lasts from May 11th to 14th, contact us if you plan to participate and would like to meet OLAT staff members. We did submit a short OLAT introduction video [Page 9] for the jury (also available on YouTube [http://] ). OLAT 6.1 release available! (15.03.2009) With some days of delay we are proud to announce our latest OLAT release (OLAT 6.1). Certainly the most important new feature is: clustering! For about two years we have been working on a scalable solution for our LMS and are happy to release with 6.1 the first scalable version of OLAT. Consisting of three independent nodes the main OLAT server at the University of Zurich has been running stable for over a month now. A second important new feature is internationalization: OLAT offers a new translation tool as well as an easier administration interface to install new languages. For a full list of bug fixes and improvements check the release notes [Page 40] and the updated OLAT manuals [Page 42] . Continue to download section [Page 38] ... 10th OLAT Birthday: OLAT User Day 2009 on September 11th (11.03.2009) On the 11th September 2009 we are celebrating the 10th anniversary of OLAT, and would like to invite you, as a user and member of our community, to join us. You will have the opportunity to meet up with like-minded people, to discuss matters of common interests, swap ideas, and – of course – to celebrate with us. So don‘t miss the OLAT User Day 2009, and make the entry in your diary today! More details will follow. Hope to see you in Zurich! Feel free to download the postcard [ userday_web.pdf] if you didn't get one by "Snail Mail". OLAT User Day 2009 Postcard (front) - 26.11.2009 7
  10. 10. OLAT - The Open Source LMS University of Hamburg switches from Blackboard to OLAT! (17.02.2009) Yesterday the University of Hamburg announced that they will switch from Blackboard to OLAT. Their blackboard license ends in April 2010 but they will already offer an OLAT server for the next summer semester 2009. Thanks to the scalability release 6.1 OLAT fits Hamburg's needs for a high number of concurrent users. For more information read the press release [ Filesize: 50kB. Type: PDF in German. ] or visit the University of Hamburg eLearning website [ eLearning/index.html] . Welcome on board!!! Check our older OLAT news in the news archive [Page 80] . - 26.11.2009 8
  11. 11. OLAT - The Open Source LMS 1. More Information About OLAT OLAT in 5 minutes (Video) OLAT was nominated as an IMS Learning Impact Award [] finalist. Each finalist had the possibility to submit a 5 minute video about their tool. If you're interested in OLAT this video might be a good starting point. Please not that this is not a tutorial. We do have a tutorial video about creating an OLAT course in the documentation section [Page 43] . Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] Why should I use OLAT? Thanks for your interest in OLAT • It is open source and therefore free of charge • The Java based framework can handle over 700 students simultaneously on one standard Linux server [Page 45] . If you install an OLAT-cluster (available since OLAT 6.1) you can serve even more students! • Thanks to its simple and intuitive web frontend, users will learn how to work with OLAT in no time • OLAT uses cutting edge AJAX/Web 2.0 technology and the layout is based on the CSS framework YAML [] • It is multilingual (UTF8) and offers translations for over 30 languages [Page 71] . The new translation tool 2009 makes OLAT translation simpler than ever! • OLAT supports eLearning standards such as SCORM 2, IMS Content Packaging or QTI 3 See the feature list [Page 10] for more details. - 26.11.2009 9
  12. 12. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] These facts about OLAT were compiled by the open source network [ olat] . The user's home portal with configurable portlets Awards OLAT won some important awards in the past. The most important ones are certainly: IMS Learning Impact Swiss OpenSource Award 2008: Medida Prix 2000: Leadership Award: OLAT won 2008 OLAT won the Leadership Award for best the Swiss(ness) first Medida Prix open source LMS in 2009 Open Source Award in the year 2000 [ [] [] pressreleases/pr090514.html] 1.1. OLAT Feature List and Some Screenshots Click on the screenshots to get a full-size view! - 26.11.2009 10
  13. 13. OLAT - The Open Source LMS General Overview • Open Source (Apache 2 License [Page 48] ) • Java based framework (Brasato [] ) with special Accessibility-mode, HTML based frontend GUI (XHTML 1.0) • AJAX/Web 2.0 enabled • Entirely multilingual, UTF8 supported, online translation tool • Supports standards such as IMS CP, SCORM 1.2, QTI 1.2 etc. • Server requirements [Page 45] : With OLAT, there is no need for a high-end server! • Scalability: Install an OLAT cluster if one server alone does not meet your requirements! • CSS framework YAML [] : Increased robustness and browser-compatibility of entire layout. • Portlets on HOME-tab are configurable Users & Groups • Unlimited number of accounts • Different roles • Various authentication methods • Administrators can add, modify or delete users • Personalized authoring and learning environment • Manage your files via HTTP or WebDAV • Configure your personal home portal • Calendar (per course, per group and combined personal calendar), also via ical, notifications (via eMail or RSS) • Be up-to-date as regards news and changes via e-mail or RSS feed • Full-text search • Share resources with other authors (learning resource repository) • Form your own project groups and invite buddies • Use discussion forums, file share space, contact forms etc. • Instant Messenger: See who is online and chat with others using either the integrated chat client (AJAX based) or an external Jabber client Authentication Options • Users can create their own accounts (with/without approval by administrators) • Direct login into OLAT with OLAT user name and password • Access file system via WebDAV login • Full Shibboleth integration • Single sign-on e.g. via Switch AAI • Control access to courses by means of AAI attributes - 26.11.2009 11
  14. 14. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Course Management • Flexible course system • Based on IMS Learning design concepts • Create a personalized course structure according to your needs • Course editor: create your course using OLAT course elements • Group management: manage your learners • Rights management: grant specific users access to course tools • Assessment tool: assess your learners • Archive tool: download log files or runtime data and import/export courses • Create your own course layout using CSS 7 Course Elements OLAT Offers • Wiki • Single pages with integrated WYSIWYG HTML editor (+ jsMath) • Include external pages or sites via tunneling • Both SCORM 1.2 and IMS Content Packages (+ CP editor) • Forums and "file dialog" element to discuss papers • Folders for download material • Tasks with drop box, sample solution and scores • Tests (with scores) and self-tests (anonymous, no scores) based on QTI 1.2 standard • Questionnaire for course evaluations • Enrollment for groups (by student or tutor or both) with wait lists • Contact forms for easy communication with group members or tutors Online Help and Documentation • Extensive context-sensitive help • User manual available as HTML or PDF • Demo courses and course templates • Comprehensive help, manual, tutorials and discussion forum Multilingual • Entirely supports UTF8 • Our main translations: German, English, French, Italian and Spanish • Community translations: Portuguese, Russian, Czech, Polish, Lithuanian, Danish, Greek, Chinese (traditional and simplified) and Farsi (Persian) • Under development: Afrikaans, Albanian, Arabic, Hebrew, Hungarian, Indonesian (Bahasa), Rumantsch and Turkish • The online translation tool has been rebuilt in 2009 and is simpler than ever! • More information in the translations chapter [Page 71] - 26.11.2009 12
  15. 15. OLAT - The Open Source LMS For a more detailed description of the features OLAT offers please refer to the functional survey [http:// Filesize: 1.3MB. Type: PDF. ] (also available in German: "OLAT Funktionsübersicht [ Filesize: 1.7MB. Type: PDF. ] "). Click on the image to see bigger screenshots in the right column. The resource list displays all available In the user management you can courses according to a student's role add, modify or delete OLAT users The OLAT administration offers tools to log, modify In OLAT each user can modify his or and delete sessions, errors, log levels, locks etc. her personal settings in the home tab 1.2. Future OLAT Development: Roadmap The following roadmap shows the planned new OLAT features for 2010. The logo shows if the feature is developed by the University of Zurich , by frentix or by Bildungsportal Sachsen (BPS) . - 26.11.2009 13
  16. 16. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Release 6.3.x (Public Release: March 23th, 2010) • Add podcasts to courses • Mavenized/Springiefied configuration • "Topic Selection" course element ("Themenbörse") • Blog integration • Easy Course Creation Wizard • Show course progress and resume GUI session • Group Management refactoring part I (financed by UZH) • Improved course config page • New Logging Infrastructure • Centralized path generation and better handling of special characters in file/path names • Refactoring of depricated forms using "Flexi Form" infrastructure part II • Inline Editing GUI Elements • RSS-Portlet • Various Component Improvements Release 6.4.x (Public Release: September 28th, 2010) • Permalinks (static URLs) in courses and groups • Backbutton • Various Component Improvements • External Tools Building Block (IMS LTI) • Group Management refactoring part II (financed by UZH) • OLAT to SIS connection • QTI 2.1 engines 1.3. OLAT Demo Server: Test OLAT Before Downloading It! Feel free to test OLAT before you download and install it. Our demo server allows a login in different roles and languages. Please do not store any data on it since all courses are deleted automatically every weekend. To access our demo server, please go to: [] - 26.11.2009 14
  17. 17. OLAT - The Open Source LMS 1.4. What users say about OLAT - From A to Z Dr. Hans-Gert Graebe, apl. Prof. am Institut für Informatik der Universität Leipzig "OLAT ist ein schönes System, das bei uns nicht nur zur Begleitung von Lehrveranstaltungen eingesetzt wird, sondern auch in unserem Software- Praktikum als komplexes Softwareartefakt zu Studien- und Erweiterungszwecken eine Rolle spielt. Aus diesen Arbeiten sind eine Reihe von Erweiterungen entstanden, wie z.B. unser OLAT-PA-Modul zur Prüfungsanmeldung. Im Gegensatz zu anderen Anwendern fahren wir mehrere kleine, an konkrete Situationen angepasste OLAT-Instanzen, weil ich meine, dass eine solche dezentrale Infrastruktur die Struktur der Verantwortlichkeiten an einer Universität besser widerspiegelt. Eine besonders interessante Anwendung ergab sich aus dem Vergleich mit Anforderungen an eine kooperative Plattform im Bereich der Regionalentwicklung. Hier ist die erste Version eines Systems zur Unterstützung von Kundenbetreuern der Anhalt Dessau AG auf der Basis von OLAT so gut wie fertig." More about OLAT at the Leipzig University [ OLAT] Susanne Haab, e-learning coordinator at the University of Zurich "The OLAT designers did a really good job in tidying up the OLAT 6 layout, which is very smooth and calm now." Weiter zur E-Learning-Koordination (ELK) der Philosophischen Fakultät [] - 26.11.2009 15
  18. 18. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Kurt Hanselmann, PhD Microbiology, CEO of swiss | i - research and training, uses computer- supported teaching in courses on microbiology, biochemistry, systems biology and geobiology with OLAT for self-learning, evaluation and testing as well as for scientific networking and distance training Self-Learning "When I began evaluating my own teaching performance, it became obvious that lecturing is one of the less effective means of training students. We still do it, because it has always been done this way and neither students nor peers seem to be able to define what "effective" teaching should look like. Employing OLAT as teaching and learning support allows one to initiate guided self- learning by the student and it opens new options for evaluating one's own teaching performance." Self-Testing "OLAT and the internet alone do not make better students and they do not lead to better grades at exams. But they give students more opportunities to learn by themselves and to check their performance regularly. They can prepare themselves optimally for their profession and learn how to interpret and use scientific knowledge and to think scientifically. OLAT learning tools allow students to build knowledge from facts by themselves and to use their study time efficiently. There is more time left for both, the interaction with the teacher for clarification as well as the evaluation of scientific evidence rather than solely for information transfer." Prof. Klaus Hering, Beauftragter für e-Learning an der Hochschule für Technik, Wirtschaft und Kultur (HTWK) Leipzig "Wir haben 2006 nach Tests in ausgewählten Lehrveranstaltungen den hochschulweiten Einsatz von OLAT beschlossen und die Entwicklung einer eigenen Lernplattform eingestellt. OLAT hat uns vor allem durch die Flexibilität und Vielfalt der Gestaltbarkeit kursbegleitender Strukturen und die Möglichkeiten der Organisation von Kommunikation und Kooperation in Gruppen überzeugt. Wir nutzen OLAT-Kursstrukturen auch losgelöst von konkreten Veranstaltungen zur Unterstützung studienorganisatorischer Prozesse wie etwa der Semesterplanung für Wahlpflicht-Module. Im Rahmen des Bildungsportals Sachsen wird OLAT den Sächsischen Hochschulen von der BPS Bildungsportal Sachsen GmbH in Form der Lernplattform OPAL (Online-Plattform für Akademisches Lehren und Lernen) zur Verfügung gestellt. Der kooperative Ansatz erlaubt eine Konzentration knapper Mittel für Weiterentwicklung und Support. Außerdem bietet er Potenzial für hochschulübergreifende Lehr-, Lern- und Forschungsaktivitäten. Inzwischen weist OPAL in Sachsen über 49.000 registrierte Nutzer auf." - 26.11.2009 16
  19. 19. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Petra Kauer-Ott, elearning coordinator Geosciences at University of Zurich "OLAT is not a «eierlegende Wollmilchsau», but not far away from! The platform is easy to use for students - more complex for authors - but this complexity allows to create courses fulfilling the needs of both, lecturers and students. I have been working with the platform since 2002, and the development from that time on has been impressive. Features like tunneling, wikis, waiting lists or import of content packages are integrated in OLAT and meanwhile indispensable for our courses. To be prepared for the future, OLAT has permanently to be enhanced and adapted - a big amount of work, hopefully manageable by the OLAT team as good as in the past. As a member of the OLAT usability group I try to encourage the further development and place the users viewpoint. " eLearning@GeoWiss [] Frank Mäder, E-Learning Koordinator der Rechtswissenschaftlichen Fakultät der Universität Zürich • Wir verwenden OLAT für administrative Prozesse im Zusammenhang mit der Durchführung von Lehrveranstaltungen. Namentlich für die Anmeldung bei limitierten Teilnehmerzahlen, die Durchsetzung von Abgabefristen, das "Einsammeln" der Falllösungen, etc. ist OLAT ein unverzichtbarer Helfer und Prozessoptimierer geworden. • Das System besticht trotz diverser Releases und damit verbundener Erweiterung der Features im Grundsatz durch eine einfache Schulbarkeit, d.h. die von mir betreuten Assistierenden können innert sehr kurzer Zeit dazu befähigt werden, ihre OLAT-Kurse selbständig zu betreuen und später eigene Kurse aufzusetzen. • Schliesslich scheint es OLAT fertiggebracht zu haben, der unglaublichen Vielfalt an Bedürfnissen aller Fakultäten und Institute gerecht zu werden und ein umfassendes Angebot an Lösungen zu präsentieren. E-Learning @ RWF [] Cerstin Mahlow, M.A., Senior Scientific Officer at FHNW and Lecturer at the Faculty of Humanities and Arts at University of Zurich "I have been using OLAT from the year 2001 on. Since then a lot of features have been added making OLAT suitable for a broad variety of didactic scenarios. In contrast to other LMS, the architecture of OLAT has evolved to keep pace with today's requirements for mission-critical e-learning platforms with respect to scalability and reliability. What I like most from the pedagogical perspective: Lecturers are not forced to follow a predefined concept but can build courses perfectly tailored to their particular needs. As a user I can contribute to the development by making proposals and specifications for features, reporting on bugs and testing new features. That way I am part of the OLAT community, helping to improve and to explore new forms of e-learning." - 26.11.2009 17
  20. 20. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Joachim Saleyka, Technical Manager,Department Learning Services, Informations- und Medienzentrum, University of Applied Sciences Furtwangen (Germany) "OLAT is the platform we chose for our central Learning Management System which we call FELIX 10 (Furtwangen E-learning and Information eXchange). We have been using OLAT for almost one and a half years now. Metaphorically speaking FELIX has really grown up and made many friends ever since he moved from our former (commercial) LMS to OLAT." Felix 2 HS Furtwangen [] Katja Seifried, e-learning coordinator, Institute of Mass Communication and Media Research (IPMZ), University of Zurich "I like working with OLAT not least due to its modularity. The composition of customized learning environments is very convenient. I can perfectly fit the contents of my lectures with the particular online-components that are didactically expedient for me." E-Learning@IPMZ [,E- Learning,Allgemein&expandable=0] Dr. phil. Roland Streule, Koordinator edulap and PTO "I like the manifold tools and functionalities of OLAT, which can be freely combined to build up didactical scenarios for almost every purpose. Starting from implementing content for self-study parts to integrating collaborative tools or embedding external applications, OLAT offers a lot of possibilities. Moreover, it is easy to use and is being improved constantly." "Ich mag vor allem die vielfältigen Werkzeuge und Funktionalitäten von OLAT. Man kann sie frei miteinander kombinieren und damit praktisch jedes denkbare didaktische Szenario umsetzen. Angefangen von der Realisierung von Inhalten für das Selbststudium über deren Verflechtung mit kollaborativen Werkzeugen bis hin zur Einbindung externer Anwendungen, bietet OLAT viele Möglichkeiten. Zudem ist OLAT einfach zu nutzen und wird ständig weiterentwickelt." Mehr über PTO (Psychopathology Taught Online) [] - 26.11.2009 18
  21. 21. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Benjamin Wilding, lic.oec.publ., Projektleiter eCF "OLAT ist für mich als eCF-Projektleiter ein sehr wichtiges Werkzeug, um den Studierenden eLearning-Angebote liefern zu können. Ich schätze OLAT sehr, da es für mich als Kursadministrator viele Möglichkeiten bei der Kurserstellung bietet und da es für die Studierenden sehr einfach zu handhaben ist. Zudem ist OLAT sehr zuverlässig und weisst rasche Antwortzeiten auf. OLAT hat mir die Arbeit sowohl aus administrativer wie auch aus inhaltlicher Sicht bedeutend vereinfacht." Weiter zur eCorporate Finance (eCF) website [] OLAT Team at the Furtwangen University "OLAT is the central Learning Management System used by the Furtwangen University of Applied Sciences. It is promoted using the name FELIX (Furtwangen E-Learning and Information eXchange). Currently, we completed the initial phase of our OLAT installation. The results are very encouraging. One feature that's very popular among students is the possibility to autonomously create and manage project groups. Within summer term 2008 more than 150 project groups have been initiated. Furthermore, OLAT's well-structured design and its simple navigation lead to a positive rating in terms of usability. Thus, compared to times of our previous Learning Management System, the number of students support inquiries decreased significantly. In a similar vein, the teachers emphasize the functionality and usability of OLAT. Hence, the central Learning Management System FELIX is widely accepted. In summary, we made encouraging experiences in the initial phase of our OLAT installation and we are looking forward to the next winter term, when we will promote OLAT as the central Learning Management System of the Furtwangen University of Applied Sciences." Felix 2 HS Furtwangen [] The OLAT team of the Hochschule Furtwangen Weitere Kundenmeinungen Erfahrungen von Dozierenden der Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Dresden (FH) [] - 26.11.2009 19
  22. 22. OLAT - The Open Source LMS 1.5. Who Uses OLAT? List of OLAT Installations As far as we know, there are about 150 OLAT installations running worldwide. Some of them are just for test purposes, some are used for internal training but most of them are productive installations at some university or higher education institution. We do list the most important ones below. To our knowledge, OLAT has been installed in the following countries: • Australia • India • Russia • Austria • Indonesia • South Africa • Brazil • Iran • Spain • Chile • Italy • Sweden • China • Korea • Switzerland • Croatia • Kyrgyzstan • Taiwan • Czech Republic • Lithuania • Turkey • Denmark • Malaysia • Ukraine • France • Peru • USA • Germany • Poland • Vietnam • Greece • Portugal From the visits on our website we know that there are people interested in OLAT at the following locations (see ClustrMaps for more information [] ): website visits since the release of OLAT 5.2 (July 2007) Furthermore OLAT has been or is being translated into most of the above countries' national language and more translations are on their way. Please check our OLAT translations [Page 71] page for a complete overview! If your country is missing or if you are interested in translating OLAT, please send us an e-mail [Link to URI] . OLAT Main Installation: Universities of Zurich, Basel, Lucerne, PH St. Gallen and the Federal Institute of Technology The main OLAT installation is located at the University of Zurich [] (maintained by the Multimedia & E-Learning Services of the University of Zurich [] ) but used by more universities such as the University of Basel [] , the University of Bern [] - 26.11.2009 20
  23. 23. OLAT - The Open Source LMS , the University of Lucerne [] , the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich [http://] and in Lausanne [] . It is accessible via the "Swiss Login" AAI 12 and therefore available for all AAI member institutions. Up and running since 1999 when OLAT 1.0 was installed. • 03.11.2009: release 6.2.2 installed, 42000 users, 1000 authors and nearly 2200 published courses • Between 400 and 700 users simultaneously online every day; the maximum is 1100 users • Single-server environment for OLAT, MySQL and Wildfire IM Server. See server requirements [Page 45] for more technical information. University of Zurich OLAT Server [] Bildungsportal Sachsen BPS The BPS Bildungsportal Sachsen GmbH [] decided to use OLAT as their strategic future LMS. The BPS is a joint venture company financed by 10 universities in the state of Sachsen, Germany. Since BPS customized OLAT and built new features they renamed their product from OLAT to OPAL 13 and promote their LMS under this name. • Authentication done via Shibboleth infrastructure (Sachsen first and only German state using Shibboleth state-wide at all universities) • Currently using the latest 5.2 release • Nearly 20'000 registered users BPS Bildungsportal Sachsen GmbH is one of the major contributors of the OLAT project. BPS OPAL/OLAT Server [] 12 AAI stands for Authentication and Authorization Infrastructure (AAI). For detailed information both on technical and organizational level refer to the SWITCH AAI page. 13 In Saxony the BPS GmbH (Bildungsportal Sachsen) is one of Germany's major OLAT users. They chose to rename their product from OLAT to OPAL which stands for "Online Plattform für akademisches Lehren und Lernen". The BPS team is not only an OLAT user but their team also contributes to the OLAT code by submitting new features, improvements and bug fixes. Link to the OPAL server. - 26.11.2009 21
  24. 24. OLAT - The Open Source LMS University of Macerata – Italy OLAT is the new central learning management system used by the University of Macerata for the “Intelligent Learning Environment” project. The installation is configured as follows: • Installation of OLAT 6.0.4 • Instant Messaging / Jabber enabled OLAT is managed by the university's Centre for e-Learning (CELFI) supporting all Faculties offering e- Learning courses. Planned extensions (phased implementation during the ILE – Project): • Tagging and LSA Tool • Integrated Blog • E-Portfolio • AI – Tutoring Subsystem • Video Conferencing facility (OpenMeetings) University of Macerata OLAT Server [] Hochschule Furtwangen University OLAT is the central learning management system used by the Furtwangen University of Applied Sciences. It is promoted using the name FELIX 2 (Furtwangen E-Learning and Information eXchange). • Installation of OLAT 6.0 • Authentication via Shibboleth and customized auto-registration process linked to the central user directory of the university • Extensions for special university Single Sign-on services • Instant Messaging / Jabber enabled - 26.11.2009 22
  25. 25. OLAT - The Open Source LMS OLAT is managed by the university's Informations- und Medienzentrum, Department for Learning Services [] . HS Furtwangen OLAT Server [] Warmia and Mazury Vocational Education Centre in Olsztyn (Poland) Warmia and Mazury Vocational Education Centre in Olsztyn is an educational organisation which deal with vocational courses in many areas such as: building construction, landscape architecture, surveying and many others. It provides also many driving license courses. Server maintained by Biuro Projektów Geoinformatycznych GEOMATIKK [] . • Installation of OLAT 5.2.2 • Default language is Polish • Instant Messaging / Openfire enabled Warmia and Mazury Vocational Education Centre OLAT Server [] Andowson Chang - Translation and Installation Help, OLAT Chinese Users Community, Taiwan Andowson Chang [] is devoted to the support of open source technologies in e-Learning for Chinese Users. • Installation of OLAT 6.0.6(Apache 2.0.52 + Tomcat 5.5.26 + PostgreSQL 7.4.19) • Instant Messaging / Openfire enabled • Only a few users and course right now Andowson Chang's OLAT installation [] - 26.11.2009 23
  26. 26. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Pädagogische Hochschule Zürich Evaluation of students of primary schools using the OLAT testing and evaluation tools. Status: Version 4.1.1 installed, 41'000 randomly generated evaluation accounts (regular OLAT users with access to evaluation courses). IT-Test OLAT Server [] TechNet – IT & Network Support Services, Greece TechNet [] specializes in developing, deploying and maintaining e-learning solutions and content, based on OLAT, under the name TechNet LMS [] while also offering commercial support. Our Services include (but are not restricted to): Customizing, Development, Support, Training & Content Production. • OLAT 6.1.1 release installed • Openfire 3.6.4 release installed • Modified OLATcore and theme • 20 Demo SCORM Courses TechNet OLAT Demo Server [] - 26.11.2009 24
  27. 27. OLAT - The Open Source LMS iVee - Instituto Virtual de Ensino Estruturado (Brazil) The iVee [] is not only running an OLAT installation in Brazil, it is also responsible for the OLAT translation into Brazilian Portuguese. iVee OLAT Server [] Multicoisas Franquias Ltda. (Brazil) Another OLAT installation in Brazil is run by the company Multicoisas Franquias Ltda [http://] . They currently have around 100 registered users but this number will grow to more than 600 in the future when more employees get more used to using OLAT. This company is a store franchise that sells home accessories and currently have 60 stores in all over Brazil. They plan to use OLAT to help the learning and training inside the company. Multicoisas OLAT Server [] • Installation of OLAT 5.2.3 • Default language is Portuguese - 26.11.2009 25
  28. 28. OLAT - The Open Source LMS, Kosova [] is an education plattform from Smart Bits GmbH (Switzerland, Kosovo). Smart Bits developed content for English, Project Management and ECDL. The courses are accessible for schools in Kosovo, the American University Kosovo (AUK) and private companies and institutions. It is planned to rollout OLAT in all important education scenarios in Kosovo. • Installation of OLAT 6 • Usage of english and albanien language • Custom development to support remote login form • Most content SCORM based • Customized GUI Customization and installation done by frentix GmbH [] Mesimi OLAT Server [] Gartenbauschule LVG Heidelberg, Germany The LVG Heidelberg is a school for horticulture in Germany. • Installation of OLAT 6.0 • Instant Messaging / Jabber enabled • Customized GUI Customization and installation done by frentix GmbH [] . - 26.11.2009 26
  29. 29. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Gartenbauschule OLAT Server [] Zentrum für Ausbildung im Gesundheitswesen Kanton Zürich (ZAG), Switzerland The ZAG is a new Swiss school for health care. • Installation of OLAT 6.0 • User authentication using the LDAP extension • Customized code extensions • Video streaming and Picturepark media management integration • Intranet is managed using OLAT; intranet designed on the OLAT course system (permanently visible in the top navigation unlike regular OLAT courses) • Instant Messaging / Jabber enabled • Customized GUI Hosting, installation, customization and extension development done by frentix GmbH [] . ZAG OLAT Server [] Hochschule für Soziale Arbeit Zürich HSSAZ, Switzerland The HSSAZ is one of the eight Universities of Applied Sciences in Zurich and specializing in social work education. - 26.11.2009 27
  30. 30. OLAT - The Open Source LMS • Installation of OLAT 4.0.1 standard version • Instant Messaging / Jabber enabled • Integrated additional non-OLAT component project agenda; a straightforward project-planning tool Hosting, customization and installation of OLAT by imachine projekt ag [] . HSSAZ OLAT Server [] University of Zurich IRC (Accounting and Controlling) Decentralized installation for the accounting and controlling institute of the University of Zurich. Fork of early OLAT version, individual GUI implementation IRC OLAT Server [] Academia Bohemica The Academia Bohemica is a new internet university with the target to provide good university education for unprivileged people. Courses in philosophy and history are now in preparation. • OLAT 4.1 release installed • Default language is Czech • Some courses accessible with guest account Academia Bohemica OLAT Server [] - 26.11.2009 28
  31. 31. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Frentix E-Learning Server The frentix GmbH [] offers commercial services such as ASP, hosting, customizing, development, support, and training for the LMS OLAT. The server is used by frentix for OLAT training courses and hosts courses from frentix customers. Currently the version 6.0 is installed. frentix OLAT Server [] Swiss Federal Strategy Unit for Information Technology FSUIT The HERMES project management method [] is used to manage, develop and execute projects in Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). It has been developed by the federal administration in 1975 and has since then underwent extensive revisions in 1986 and 1995. HERMES is not just used by the federal administration as open standard but is also at the disposal of cantons, educational institutions and business enterprises. HERMES has become a significant success as regards numerous ICT projects and serves as a common guideline for service providers and service procurers, in particular for project purchasers, project managers and project employees. OLAT is used to train the HERMES project management method. Currently the version 5.0 is installed. Installation, customization and extension development done by frentix GmbH [] . HERMES E-Learning OLAT Server - 26.11.2009 29
  32. 32. OLAT - The Open Source LMS [] KTSI: Höhere Fachschule (HF) für Technik The KTSI [] is a technical school in Basel, Switzerland. In 2006 students evaluated and tested OLAT. The positive result of that project convinced the school board to push OLAT as their e-learning platform. In January 2007 OLAT went live and is very successful according to the school director. KTSI E-Learning OLAT Server [] Top Originators, USA The goal of Top Originators [] is to introduce their customers to the profitable world of loan origination. For online training purposes the company is using a customized and extended version of OLAT. • Based on OLAT 3.2.1 • Addition of a certification course element • Addition of a search course element • GUI customization Installation, customization and extension development done by Agile Studios [] , USA. - 26.11.2009 30
  33. 33. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Top Originators OLAT Server [] Alta scuola pedagogica dei Grigoni, Switzerland Since spring 2007 the Pädagogische Hochschule Graubünden [] offers an OLAT server running on the latest 5.1.3 release. Realized and implemented by the ICT-Atelier [] in Chur. PHGR OLAT Server [] Are You Missing Your OLAT Installation Here? Please send a mail to [Link to URI] along with your text and links if you want to be added to this site! 1.6. Company Service There are companies worldwide providing Service to host, install, develope or customize OLAT fitting your needs. If you do so yourself, please let us know. Fill out the form and we will add you to the list! frentix GMBH, Switzerland frentix GmbH does offer various services for the LMS OLAT also to international customers. [] [Link to URI] BPS Bildungsportal Sachsen GmbH, Germany BPS Bildungsportal Sachsen GmbH advises and guides mostly german companies. [] [Link to URI] Roundbox Global, USA and Costa Rica Roundbox Global is a strategic business and technology consulting firm. [] [Link to URI] 1.7. OLAT Download Material Flyers and Posters Feel free to download and print the product flyer of OLAT if you would like to promote OLAT on congresses, in workshops, your organisation or elsewhere. Please contact us [Page 92] if you need the original Adobe Illustrator or InDesign files. OLAT 6 broschure (4 pages DIN A5) 5.8MB PDF Print resolution [] OLAT 6 broschure (4 pages DIN A5) 0.2MB PDF Web resolution - 26.11.2009 31
  34. 34. OLAT - The Open Source LMS [] OLAT 6 flyer (DIN A6 back and front) 0.25MB PDF Print resolution [] OLAT 6 flyer (DIN A6 back and front) 0.1MB PDF Web resolution [] OLAT 6 flyer (DIN A6 back and front) - German 0.25MB PDF Print resolution [] OLAT 6 flyer (DIN A6 back and front) - German 0.1MB PDF Web resolution [] OLAT 6 poster (DIN A0) 3.7MB PDF Print resolution [] OLAT 6 poster (DIN A0) 0.2MB PDF Web resolution [] The OLAT Logo The new OLAT 3D logo, 72x72 pixels 12kB PNG New OLAT 3D Logo [ olat_logo2_72.png] The new OLAT 3D logo, 128x128 pixels 20kB PNG New OLAT 3D Logo [ olat_logo2_128.png] The new OLAT 3D logo, 256x256 pixels 48kB PNG New OLAT 3D Logo [ olat_logo2_256.png] The new OLAT 3D logo, 720x720 pixels 128kB PNG New OLAT 3D Logo [ olat_logo2_720.png] University of Zurich Logo If you need the University of Zurich logo or font have a look at the UniCommunication Corporate Design [http://] page. Unfortunately this page is only accessible for students and staff. Therefore we publish the PNG version (can be used for web and print) of the logo below: Logo University of Zurich (Black Font) 40kB PNG English, Black Font [ unilogo_pp_schwarz_en.png] Logo der Universität Zürich (Schwarze Schrift) 40kB PNG German, Black Font [ unilogo_pp_schwarz_de.png] Logo University of Zurich (White Font) 40kB PNG English, White Font - 26.11.2009 32
  35. 35. OLAT - The Open Source LMS [ unilogo_pp_weiss_en.png] Logo der Universität Zürich (Weisse Schrift) 40kB PNG German, White Font [ unilogo_pp_weiss_de.png] 1.8. Short Overview of the History of OLAT Please use the green dot at the bottom of the timeline to scroll. Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] 1.9. OLAT 10 years movie OLAT is celebrating its 10 years anniversary. Have a look at the OLAT 10 years movie! Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] 1.10. Press • Franck, Christian, 2009. OLAT LMS - Präzise wie ein Schweizer Uhrwerk. eLearning Journal, 1/09, 79. The January 2009 issue of the German eLearning Journal brought an advertorial by Christian Franck (Frentix) which was distribtuted at the Learntec conference in Karlsruhe. Download: ../download/publications/eLearning_Journal_01_09_OLAT_Frentix.pdf • anonymous (2009). Synergien durch hochschulübergreifende Lernplattform [online]. München: CHECK.point eLearning/INFObases GmbH. Available from: [Accessed 11.02.2009]. Article from CHECK.point eLearning about OPAL aka OLAT in Saxony. Download: • eLearning Journal im Gespräch mit Marcel Dübner (Inside) und Christian Franck (Frentix GmbH), 2009. Podcast. By Siepmann, Frank. Learntec Karlsruhe, Germany: eLearning Journal. Video-Podcast: eLearning Journal Chefredakteur Frank Siepmann im Gespräch mit Marcel Dübner (Inside) und Christian Franck (Frentix GmbH) an der Learntec 2009 in Karlsruhe. Download: • Fuchs, Mariate (2009). E-Learning: OLAT an der Elbe. unipublic [online], 15.03.2009. Available from: [Accessed 15.03.2009]. Unipublic-Interview with Hans-Jörg Zuberbühler about the new partnership with the University of Hamburg. - 26.11.2009 33
  36. 36. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Download: • anonymous (2009). Universität Hamburg: Umstieg auf OLAT [online]. München: CHECK.point eLearning/INFObases GmbH. Available from: [Accessed 15.03.2009]. Also CHECK.point eLearning talks about the LMS-switch at the University of Hamburg from Blackboard to OLAT. Download: • Gnägi, Florian (2009). Learning Management Software OLAT and YAML - a success story [online]. Jesse, Dirk. Available from: [Accessed 17.04.2009]. OLAT's Florian Gnägi wrote an article for the YAML Developers Blog about the YAML-integration into OLAT. Download: • anonymous (2009). Open Source LMS OLAT gewinnt IMS Leadership Award [online]. München: CHECK.point eLearning/INFObases GmbH. Available from: [Accessed 30.05.2009]. CHECK.point eLearning talks about the IMS Leadership Award that OLAT won at the IMS Conference in Barcelona. Download: • Zuberbühler, Hans-Jörg (2009). Erstellung von strukturierten e-Learning Inhalten mit eLML (eLesson Markup Language). ZInfo - Die elektronische Zeitschrift der Informatikdienste [online], 26.05. Available from: [Accessed 2.6.2009]. Download: • IDG (2008). Erfolgreiche OpenExpo. PCTipp [online]. Available from: [Accessed 30.9.2008]. A news feed by PCTipp online talking about the Open Expo in general and mentioning the winners of the OSS-Awards. Download: • Hilzinger, Marcel (2008). Beste Schweizer Open-Source-Projekte ausgezeichnet. Linux Magazin [online]. Available from: [Accessed 30.9.2008]. The Linux Magazine presents the winners of the first Swiss Open Source Awards. Download: • Hawthorn, Leslie (2008). Hacking Zurich. Google Open Source Blog [online]. Available from: http:// [Accessed 30.9.2008]. Leslie Hawthorn (responsible for the Google Summer of Code program) talks about the what has been achieved in Zurich and about the upcoming Open Expo in Winterthur. Download: • Zuberbühler, Hans-Jörg (2008). OLAT im neuen Kleid. ZInfo - Elektronisches Informationsbulletin der Informatikdienste [online], 26. Available from: [Accessed 01.07.2008]. Article about release 6.0, which is based on the CSS framework YAML. Download: • Digitalk 58: E-Learning an der Universität Zürich, 2008. Podcast. By Zedi, Roger, Schüssler, Matthias. Zürich: Tages-Anzeiger. Eva Seiler (head of the E-Learning Center at the University of Zurich) and her Co-Worker Matthias Rohs are talking in this Podcast about the E-Learning situation at the UZH. Digitalk is the Podcast-series from the Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger. Download: • Fuchs, Marita (2008). UZH-Software für alle. unipublic [online], 20.03.2008. Available from: http:// [Accessed 23.4.2008]. unipublic presents the OLAT conference and the Google Summer of Code participation. Download: - 26.11.2009 34
  37. 37. OLAT - The Open Source LMS • Bleisch, Barbara, 2008. E-Learning: Lesen Sie die Packungsbeilage!. NZZ Campus, March 11th. The "campus" magazine (edited by the Neue Zürcher Zeitung NZZ) talked about E-Learning at the University of Zurich and about OLAT. Download: ../download/publications/nzz_campus_2008.png • Fuchs, Marita (2008). Medida-Prix: Drei UZH-Projekte in der Finalistengruppe. unipublic [online], 25.08.2008. Available from: [Accessed 27.8.2008]. Marita Fuchs (unipublic) presents the three UZH-finalists for the Medida Prix. One of them is BioSym - Learning Modules for Systems Biology - an eLearning course realized with OLAT. A second one is eLML, an open source XML framework to create eLearning lessons, also developed and used by the OLAT-team. Download: • Fisler, Joël, Schneider, Franziska, 2008. Creating, Handling And Implementing E-Learning Courses and Content Using the Open Source Tools OLAT and eLML at the University of Zurich. In: Shortis, Mark, König, Gerhard, ed. ISPRS Conference 2008 -TS ThS-16: New Approaches and Tools for Education and Capacity Building, 3-11 July 2008, Bejing. Beijing, China: International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS). Both OLAT and eLML were presented by Joël Fisler at the ISPRS Conference 2008 in Beijing, China. Download: ../download/publications/isprs2008_beijing_fisler.pdf • Hage, H.-J., Hübner, Sandra, 2008. FELIX 2.0: Usability Test - Weiterentwicklung der Lernplattform. pe-press: Zeitschrift der Fakutlät Product Engeneering an der Hochschule Furtwangen, 24, 12. The OLAT-version used at the Hochschule Furtwangen is named "FELIX" and the Usability-Tests for Felix 2.0 are presented in this article. Download: ../download/publications/felix_hs_furtwangen_102008.pdf • Fuchs, Marita (2007). Vorlesungen «on demand». unipublic [online], 14.06.2007. Available from: [Accessed 23.4.2008]. Marita Fuchs (unipublic) talks with Dr. Kurt Hanselmann about his extensive use of new media for both his lecture and for e- assessments. Download: • Gremmelmaier, Eric, 2007. NZZ: Nach dem Hype der Alltag. Neue Zürcher Zeitung NZZ, April 3rd. On the 3rd of April 2007 one of the biggest daily newspapers, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung NZZ, wrote a second article on e-learning at the University of Zurich. In that article Eric Gremmelmaier has a closer look at online courses and teaching material at the University of Zurich. Download: ../download/publications/nzz_hype_alltag.pdf • Zuberbühler, Hans-Jörg, 2007. Vom E-Learning zum «Blended Learning». Neue Zürcher Zeitung NZZ, March 9th. On the 9th of March 2007 one of the biggest daily newspapers, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung NZZ, dealt with e-learning at the University of Zurich. In that article Hans-Jörg Zuberbühler (member of the OLAT team) talks about OLAT and eLML at the University of Zurich. Download: ../download/publications/nzz_blended_learning_print.pdf • Strunk, Holger, 2007. Open Source und kostenlose Software – Einsatzmöglichkeiten im Unterricht. B&B Agrar - Die Fachzeitschrift für Bildung und Beratung, 3, 88. Holger Strunk at the Staatliche Lehr- und Versuchsanstalt für Gartenbau Heidelberg explains how OLAT is used at their school. Download: • Schulze-Fröhlich, Ruben (2006). Interview OLAT (Florian Gnägi) [online]. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. - 26.11.2009 35
  38. 38. OLAT - The Open Source LMS In this interview Florian Gnägi, one of the founder of the OLAT LMS, talks about the early days of OLAT, its possibilities and where it is heading. It gives also some insight into the project's structure and its development cycle. Download: • Genner, Sahra, 2006. Exportschlager E-Learning. iQ - Quartalinfo für Uni und ETH, 18th April, 11. Sarah wraps up the history of OLAT and talks about the current situation in a short article in IQ. That article is based on an interview with one of the OLAT founders, Sabina Jeger. Download: ../download/publications/iQ51-p11.pdf • SwissICT, 2006. FOSS-Studie Schweiz 2006. Baden: Schweizerischer Verband der Informations- und Kommunikationstechnologie SwissICT. In the Swiss FOSS study of 2006 Florian Gnägi presents how he introduced OLAT at the Zentrum für Ausbildung im Gesundheitswesen (ZAG). Download: • Schleifer, Hans-Jörg, Strunk, Holger, 2006. Blended-Learning in der Fachschule - Einsatz einer Lernplattform im Unterricht. B&B Agrar - Die Fachzeitschrift für Bildung und Beratung, 5, 162. Download: • Zuberbühler, Hans-Jörg (2005). OLAT bringt Release 4.0. ZInfo - Elektronisches Informationsbulletin der Informatikdienste [online], 18. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. Hans-Jörg explains in this article what has been added to the OLAT 4.0 release and gives a short outlook into the future. The article has some nice screenshots of some of the new OLAT features. Download: • Fuchs, Marita (2005). E-Learning im Ernstfall. unipublic [online], 26.08.2005. Available from: http:// [Accessed 22.11.2006]. This summer at the University of Zurich the first real online tests have been taken substituting paper-based tests in the field of veterinary medicine. These tests are not just self-tests; students can appeal the test's results should they fail. These online tests are based on a standard OLAT installation in IMS QTI format. The article further describes this major milestone in the e-learning process at the University of Zurich. Download: • Abächerli, Martina (2005). Uni Zürich öffnet E-Learning-Plattform für andere Universitäten [online]. pressetext.schweiz. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. This article describes the current state of OLAT and how it applies a Shibboleth interface to allow any Swiss student to log in to the University of Zurich platform. Download: • von Däniken, Theo (2005). Beim E-Learning die Nase vorn. unipublic [online], 05.08.2005. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. This article describes the current state of OLAT and how the spin-off company goodsolutions has been founded in spring 2005. Download: • Kosler, Monique, Hahn, Daniel, 2005. Projekthandbuch: Funktionelle und softwaretechnische Analyse sowie Dokumentation der Lernplattform OLAT Version 3.1.4. project thesis. University Chemnitz, Germany. Review and documentation of the OLAT 3.2. system architecture. Download: ../download/publications/OLAT_Projekthandbuch_mitAnhang.pdf • Anonymous (2005). OLAT 4.0.1 Review [online]. Available from: http:// [Accessed 22.11.2006]. A detailed test review of OLAT 4.0.1. The review covers the following aspects: installation, features, learner experience, teacher/ administrator experience and didactic value - 26.11.2009 36
  39. 39. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Download: • Anonymous (2005). Course Platform Evaluation Report: OLAT 3.2 [online]. Edutech. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. OLAT 3.2.1. Review: This review covers the following aspects: student's environment, tutoring and didactics, course development, system and administration Download: • Gnägi, Florian, 2005. Interview mit Florian Gnägi, Partner JGS goodsolutions GmbH. InfoWeek, 15. August, 9. This Swiss IT newspaper interviewed Florian Gnägi, one of the co-founders of OLAT. Download: • Schnider, Guido, 2004. Instant Messaging Technologien in Learning Management Systemen. Diploma thesis (PDF). Institut für Informatik der Universität Zürich. In the past few years, Instant Messaging has become popular in private as well as in economic environments. This work discusses the possibilities of applying Instant Messaging in a webbased learning environment and its didactic benefits and implements Instant Messaging tools into the learning environment of the University of Zurich. Current research in the fields of didactics and awareness are fundamental for this discussion. Instant Messaging tools try to connect learning individuals that are spatially separated. The tools should also enable spontaneous communication between learners as well as support the creation of learning groups. The results of this theoretical analysis serve as basis for the implementation of selected Instant Messaging elements into the web-based learning environment at the University of Zurich. The implementation is based on the Jabber Internet standard. Download: • Steinemann, Coni (2004). OLAT 3: Die vollständige Neuentwicklung des strategischen Learning Management Systems der Universität Zürich ist in Betrieb. ZInfo - Elektronisches Informationsbulletin der Informatikdienste [online], 15. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. Download: • Schneider, Franziska (2004). OLAT: Das strategische Learning Management System. ZInfo - Elektronisches Informationsbulletin der Informatikdienste [online], 13. Available from: http:// [Accessed 22.11.2006]. Download: • Anonymous (2000). MeDiDa-Prix an Zürcher Projekt OLAT. unipublic [online], 26.09.2000. Available from: [Accessed 22.11.2006]. Download: - 26.11.2009 37
  40. 40. OLAT - The Open Source LMS 2. Download the OLAT Software OLAT 6.2.2 Easy Installer Version (Demo Use Only!) Just double-click the installer and OLAT will be installed and preconfigured automatically. No need to get Tomcat, MySQL or anything else. Use this version only for demo purposes or to create courses locally on your computer. You need a Java SDK >= 1.6 on your computer. Not yet installed? Get it Quick Download here [] . If you want to test OLAT, play around a bit, this package is all you need. OLAT 6.2.2 Easy Installer Version 122MB ZIP [] OLAT 6.2.2 Source Code Version (for Productive Use) This package contains everything you need to install OLAT in a productive environment. It features an ant-based configuration and installation procedure; it requires a tomcat and a database installation as well as a Java SDK. A manual for the installation procedure can be downloaded in our documentation section [Page 42] . Quick Download If you want to use OLAT in a productive environment then this is the right choice. OLAT 6.2.2 Source Code Version 132MB ZIP [] See the release notes [Page 40] of the following major release cycles for more information about the changes in each version. For a roadmap of our upcoming versions, please visit the OLAT roadmap page [Page 13] . Do you use OLAT? If yes, click on the button to add yourself on our page [https://] . Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] Download Material If you would like to download OLAT material such as flyers, logos or posters please have a look at the About OLAT: Material [Page 31] section. - 26.11.2009 38
  41. 41. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Previous OLAT Versions If you need an earlier version of OLAT you can download the latest four major releases below as ZIP archive. For all other versions please use CVS 15 directly. OLAT 6.2.1 Easy 119MB ZIP OLAT 6.2.1 Easy [] Installer Version OLAT 6.2.1 Source 125MB ZIP OLAT 6.2.1 Source Code [] Version OLAT 6.2.0 Easy 96MB ZIP OLAT 6.2.0 Easy [] Installer Version OLAT 6.2.0 Source 101MB ZIP OLAT 6.2.0 Source Code [] Version OLAT 6.1.1 Easy 93MB ZIP OLAT 6.1.1 Easy [] Installer Version OLAT 6.1.1 Source 102MB ZIP OLAT 6.1.1 Source Code [] Version OLAT 6.0.7 Easy 87MB ZIP OLAT 6.0.7 Easy [] Installer Version OLAT 6.0.7 Source 98MB ZIP OLAT 6.0.7 Source Code [] Version OLAT 5.2 Easy 57MB ZIP OLAT 5.2.3 Easy [] Installer Version OLAT 5.2 Source 68MB ZIP OLAT 5.2.3 Source Code [] Version Of course you can also access our CVS repository [Page 67] to access older versions. 15 CVS, the Concurrent Versions System, is the most widely used tool for controlling different versions of a source code and for a group of programmers to work simultaneously on a source code. Before working with a file, a user needs to do a "checkout" of the file from a "repository" stored on the project server. When writing updates back to the repository (called "committing"), CVS checks issues like access privileges, actual status of code and if no other group member meanwhile altered the code, CVS writes it back to the repository. By doing a "update" all project group members get the latest version of the code. CVS of course stores information about who altered which part of the code and automatically stores different versions of the code. Therefore using CVS it is possible to always reconstruct a former state of the code. The OLAT code is managed using CVS. At the University of Zurich all eLML projects use CVS to store the XML code, images and multimedia elements of a lesson. - 26.11.2009 39
  42. 42. OLAT - The Open Source LMS I like OLAT. Can I donate? Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] 2.1. Release Notes Here we give you a short summary on the last OLAT Releases. For detailed information on bugs, improvements, new features or tasks related to an already published or an upcoming release check out our Bug Tracking system [] . OLAT 6.2.0 The new features in OLAT 6.2 are: • HTML editor : Update to new TinyMCE version, and enabled jsMath (LaTex) in TinyMCE. Added TinyMCE as RichText editor at following places: editing wiki pages, creation of forum posts, various description fields and questions in QTI editor. • Calendar Upgrade: now provides import/export via ical; create iterative events; additional views; "real" subscription function • Forum Upgrade: Display of the forum course node description on the forum page; Chronological sorting or all view in forum, not threaded; Adding real threaded view to forum; See original posting when replying to forum post; Move forum message to another topic; User filter in forum: see who posted what as a moderator tool • New Content Editor: There is now an IMS-Content-Packages Editor • IMS CP Export in the Wiki: export the entire Wiki to your personal folder as an IMS Content Package which can be imported as CP learning resource (authors) or used offline. • Glossary: Improved display of glossary items; glossary functionality for guests enabled • Ressources: A Test is as long editable and replaceable on building block until it is passed at least one time; Folder course node displays title and description • Adding more metadata to files in folder module • Upgrade to Shibboleth 2.0: using Shibboleth 2.0 requires installation of Apache and mod_shib Check out the complete Release Notes OLAT 6.2.0 [ version=10131&styleName=Html&projectId=10001&Create=Create] OLAT 6.1.x The two main new feature in OLAT 6.1 are: • Scalability: Run OLAT in cluster mode on several servers at the same time • Internationalization: New translation tool and easier administration interface to install new languages Check out the complete Release Notes OLAT 6.1.0 [ version=10310&styleName=Html&projectId=10001&Create=Create] - 26.11.2009 40
  43. 43. OLAT - The Open Source LMS OLAT 6.0.x Please note that OLAT 6.0.0 was a public release only. The first release installed at the University of Zurich was OLAT 6.0.1 on July 15th, 2008. The latest release for both UZH and public is ! OLAT 6.0 is a major release including new functionality as well as bug fixes. The most important new features of the 6.0 release are listed below. Thanks to OLAT community that helped finding bugs that made this release more stable. The community did also a great job in updating several language translations. • Portlets on HOME are configurable: Decide, how many entries will be displayed, and in which order. • Layout updated including enlarged, new icon set. • CSS framework YAML [] : Increased robustness and browser-compatibility of entire layout. • Further accessibility improvements: So called Web2.a mode (beta) which allows visually impaired users to swiftly detect parts of the screen, that have been changed after the last click. • Various chat improvements: E.g. more than one chat conversations possible, chat window remains while browsing through OLAT. • OLAT output complies with XHTML 1.0 Transitional. • New wizard component, used e.g. in enhanced course publish workflow. • Course content is by default rendered in an iframe: increased navigation speed. • New plain text editor in OLAT folders: create .txt and .css files instantly - no need to upload. • Various SCORM improvements. • Custom fields: User attributes are configurable by system administrators, not stored hardcoded. As a matter of fact, there are no Release Notes in the Bug Tracking System to this version. Check out the complete Release Notes OLAT 6.0.x Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] - 26.11.2009 41
  44. 44. OLAT - The Open Source LMS Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] OLAT 5.2 Public Release Please note that OLAT 5.2.0 has only been released at the University of Zurich. The OLAT 5.2 Public Release is in fact OLAT 5.2.1. The OLAT 5.2 release is a big step towards Web 2.0 and usability. In this release we tried to implement the results of the usability report done by the University of Berne. We also rebuilt the chat client using AJAX technology and updated the forum. Here is a short list of improvements: • Usability: New tabs for navigation, creating groups from within course editor, better publishing support etc. • Web 2.0/AJAX: Faster! • Better chat client: Now HTML/AJAX based • Forum: Mark threads as sticky or important, split threads • Deleting workflow: Now you can delete users, groups, courses or resources using sophisticated filters and with prior notification of users and owners • The OLAT help in German is now Wiki based (authors can help improve the manual!) As a matter of fact, there are no Release Notes in the Bug Tracking System to this version. Check out the complete Release Notes OLAT 5.x.x Only pictures can be viewed in the PDF version! For Flash etc. see online version. Only screenshots of animations will be displayed. [link] 2.2. Documentation OLAT Overview of Functions This paper explains the most important features of OLAT 5. It is meant for decision makers who need to get a quick overview of the functionality offered by OLAT. This paper does also contain some screenshots of OLAT. - 26.11.2009 42
  45. 45. OLAT - The Open Source LMS OLAT Functional Survey 1.3MB PDF Overview of OLAT [ functions OLAT_6_0_Functional_Survey.pdf] OLAT Funktionsübersicht 1.7MB PDF Übersicht der OLAT [ Funktionen OLAT_6_0_Funktionsuebersicht.pdf] Movie: How to create a course in OLAT? Please note that there is no sound in this movie but the written comments are in German. The total lenght is 10 minutes. • QuickTime Version [ Filesize: 36MB. Type: QT. ] • Flash Version [ Filesize: 18MB. Type: Flash. ] OLAT User Manual / Online Help The comprehensive OLAT manual covers authoring of courses and other advanced features. It serves also as general help for users. The same manual is also implemented in each installed OLAT as an online course. OLAT has also an integrated context-sensitive help. Throughout OLAT you will find a little question mark that gives you an explanation about the topic you are currently looking at. Currently this context-sensitive help is available in German, Italian, English, French and other languages. Translating the help or manual into other languages [Page 71] is very welcomed. Official OLAT 6.2 manual We rewrote the OLAT user manual for OLAT 6.2! You can now download the user manual as a PDF (online and print version). These documents are available for German, English, French and Italian. For other languages check the next section where we present translations by the community. French version of 6.2 is coming soon! OLAT 6.2 User Manual (Online Version) 947kB PDF English [ OLAT_6_2_Manual_EN_online.pdf] OLAT 6.2 User Manual (Print Version) 957kB PDF English [ OLAT_6_2_Manual_EN_print.pdf] OLAT 6.2 Benutzerhandbuch (Bildschirmversion) 1.259kB PDF German [ OLAT_6_2_Manual_DE_online.pdf] OLAT 6.2 Benutzerhandbuch (Druckversion) 1268kB PDF German [ OLAT_6_2_Manual_DE_print.pdf] OLAT 6.1 Manuel d'utilisation (Online Version) 232kB PDF French - 26.11.2009 43