Open edX LMS Customization for a Professional Training Center
- End-to-end Open edX platform customization
- SCORM data migration from a legacy solution
- Cloud hosting configuration
We helped the customer move from their outdated system to a new cloud-based LMS for professional learning, which brought them 32% more active users in just the first quarter.
Our customer is a provider of online professional training courses for organizations, spanning such disciplines as health and safety, environment protection, and corporate data security.
In order to scale up their services and make their distribution more efficient, the company was looking to move from their legacy custom platform to a new learning management system (LMS) based on the Open edX SaaS. The new LMS would host such modes of learning as massive open online courses (MOOCs), smaller classes (SPOC), and blended learning.
To carry out this Open edX LMS customization, the customer turned to Iflexion, relying on our expertise in developing custom e-learning software as well as cloud computing and data migration, as these were also implied under the project scope.
To customize the Open edX platform, our LMS developers had to find workarounds for a few challenges associated with the platform’s underlying technologies and structure:
- As the SaaS components resided on multiple servers, it could take more resources to install and configure dependencies, thus optimization was needed.
- LMS customization was further complicated with the mix of Python, Django, and Ruby languages used across the platform’s functional modules.
- The customer stored their training materials as SCORM (Sharable Content Object Reference Model) files, and those were to be migrated to the new system; however, Open edX didn’t support this format out of the box.
Addressing these challenges, Iflexion’s developers customized the system covering the following components tailored to the customer’s style guide and business specifics:
- Custom branding based on a theme developed from scratch using the customer’s logo and color scheme.
- A course management console allowing admins to create and edit courses via an intuitive user interface. The course creation dashboard covers the end-to-end process of configuring a course along with its contents, timeline and completion requirements. Each course is concluded with interactive quizzes of multiple-choice or open-ended questions, which assess trainees’ knowledge instantly as the LMS processes the results automatically.
- Customized data presentation to comply with the customer’s vision of learning delivery.
- User management features for admins to get visibility into subscribed companies and their enrolled trainees, control user permissions, manage user groups, and view users’ personal data in a protected environment.
- Open edX E-Commerce configuration to connect the SaaS platform’s dedicated e-commerce module and enable the customer to manage their course catalog, orders, and billing without leaving the system. The connected module also expands the customer’s marketing opportunities as it supports special offers and coupons.
When customizing the LMS, we also configured the following user roles and their respective permissions:
- Admins: the customer’s managers overlooking course creation and full-cycle content management, user data management, and account management.
- Teachers: privileged users assigned on the customer’s side to supervise the training process for each subscribed company, monitor their students’ progress, and address end clients’ inquiries regarding the course materials.
- Students: end clients’ employees enrolled in the courses by their organizations, who get access to the purchased training programs.
Data Migration and Hosting
Our Open edX developers also migrated data from the customer’s legacy Java platform to the new LMS. As the course materials were originally stored as SCORM files which were not supported by Open edX out of the box, our team used SCORM Cloud, a specialized third-party service, to wrap the customer’s training programs into SCORM dispatch packages. This allowed the customer’s admins to manage SCORM materials natively in the new LMS.
To host the new cloud-based system, we installed, configured and deployed it on Amazon EC2, a highly scalable cloud hosting service, which maintains performance regardless of the number of concurrent users. This hosting option allowed the customer to stay flexible about their consumed computing resources and keep expanding their client base with no friction.
Within just two months, Iflexion’s e-learning software developers carried out learning management system customization based on the Open edX cloud platform, while also migrating data from the customer’s legacy system. The new LMS completely redefined the way the professional training center delivered their educational courses to their business clients and helped grow the number of active users by 32% in the first quarter since their Open edX-based system went live.
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