Open LMS To Release Moodle™ Open Source Plugins For Free, Plans To Go Fully Open Source By 2022

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Updated on Dec. 22. Open LMS is announcing the initial list of open source plugins available to all Moodle™ users. To date, 65 plugins have been made available, 24 of them since October. However, the company’s internal goal to release everything by December 31 will not be accomplished. This includes most notably the Personalized Learning Designer.

Find the complete list of plugins with the latest updates ready to try on your LMS at

Some of Open LMS plugins are available on the Moodle™ Plugin Directory. Find them here.

Disclaimer: LMSPulse is part of Open LMS and Learning Technologies Group

Open LMS, part of the UK-based Learning Technologies Group, has announced plans to release all custom modules, enhancements and modifications built on the Moodle™ LMS platform on which their LMS services are based, as free and open software. The release process is underway, with the goal of “going fully open source” by the end of the year at some point of 2022.

A press release and a blog post from Jonathan Satchell, CEO of LTG, announced the news.

As the most widely used, open source LMS in the world, Moodle™ has fueled the learning experiences of hundreds of millions of educators. Moodle™ is also a critical element in the business model of hundreds of thousands of organizations around the world, many of which take advantage of the openness, flexibility and extensibility of the LMS for their specific purposes. Depending on the circumstances, customizations and modifications can be made available for the global community of Moodle users, the most common method being the Moodle™ Plugin directory, boasting more than 1,700 items provided by companies and developers. Other, more intensive interventions of the Moodle™ architecture warrant custom releases or flavor, some of the most popular being CLAMP and Learnbook.

The GPLv3 license under which Moodle™ is distributed enables use and modification of the software for any purpose; without the need for compensation to their owner in case of commercial or for-profit use that is not a direct sale of the modified product. Like Moodle, GPL-licensed software that has contributed the development of sizeable economies without a direct monetary benefit to their creators and maintainers include the Linux kernel, Automattic’s WordPress and Drupal, along with countless GPL applications, games and libraries.

With the announcement, Open LMS reiterates its mission to become a key contributor to the “Open EdTech” space and Moodle™, even if the formal partnerships with the company through the Moodle Partner program have ceased. Open LMS was an early Moodle Partner under the Moodlerooms name, and so were eThink Education and eCreators, all of which are now part of Open LMS. The announcement also aligns with Open LMS president vision of making a world-class elearning platform free and available for learners all over the world.

eCreators Learnbook goes FOSS, rebrands to Open LMS Work

There is little mystery around the fact that Learnbook LMS was a key factor in Open LMS interest for eCreators. What started as a Moodle™ theme, over the years grew into a powerful and sleek experience that was would remove some of Moodle™’s most commons frictions and UX gripes.

Added features Learnbook brought to their customers, which soon will be available for the Open EdTech community at large, include:

  • Custom mobile app
  • Accessibility enhancements
  • Extensive documentation

Given the extensive development built into Learnbook, the compatibility with the current versions of Moodle™ remains unclear.

LTG’s CEO Speaks

In his first public statement on Moodle™ and the Partnership program, Satchell reiterates the companies’ missions to ensure continuity and customer care, in the face of a continuous stream of company acquisitions.

Satchell acknowledges the criticism related to the consolidation or eThink and eCreators into the Open LMS umbrella brand, particularly from Moodle™ HQ and its CEO and Founder, Martin Dougiamas. The end of the partnership represented the nip of Moodle™ largest source of revenue, with Moodlerooms estimated to represent as high as half of the total Moodle™ partners program.

A tricky part of the relationship involves Moodle™ Workplace, which is not GPL licensed. After becoming Premium Moodle™ Partners, eThink and eCreators were granted the rights to the software, licenses and trademarks, but these rights have been since rescinded. This leaves some 47 customers using Moodle Workplace served by Open LMS, who by August would need to decide whether to switch LMS or service provider. Satchell offers a free transition to vanilla Moodle or Open LMS Work.

After Dougiamas statements, unofficial discussions have taken place at Moodle™ HQ including, among others the over 80 existing Moodle™ Partners, regarding the possible relationship between HQ and LTG’s Open LMS. The outcome of these discussions and its status remains unknown.

Satchell pledges that by the end of the year, anyone will be able to get their own Open LMS and Open LMS Work system will be able to do so on their own server or instance. Modules and additions that will go along include Personalized Learning Designer.

Disclaimer: LMSPulse is part of Open LMS and Learning Technologies Group

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