Royal Roads University (Victoria) embraces open-source software

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Faculty and IT staff of the Royal Roads University (RRU) in Victoria, BC said they considered proprietary software but found Moodle (Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment) a perfect fit for their e-Learning environment. < ?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

According to Carrie Spencer, CIO of Royal Roads University, a large developer community would be beneficial in building applications for their curriculum. e-Learning had become a very crucial part of delivering education today, according to Dave Marks, consulting director of IDC Canada Inc. in Toronto. Marks said open-source software offers several key advantages over proprietary licensed-based products. Moodle has a community of more than 100,000 users, speaking over 70 languages in over 150 countries. Soon after it was founded in 1995, the RRU was among the first institutions to deploy an online-based learning program. Using in-house applications, the university offered students from across Canada and around the world, degree programs through a combination of online learning courses and short residencies. Although very successfully used for several years, the in-house learning system needed significant upgrades to incorporate simpler communication tools that allow faculty members to develop and maintain their own courses.

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