OpenTaal – ELearning Platform
OpenTaal is an open source one-to-one, teacher-student platform. It can be easily deployed and uses open source technologies. The platform is currently under development. The fundamental idea behind the platform is to enable teachers from anywhere on the planet to deliver teachings and lessons to students in developing countries. Let’s make a change and spread knowledge through technology! The platform will be donated to public institutions, schools and NGOs in developing countries. It will also be released as open source under the GNU General Public License. Your contribution will help develop end enhance the platform and will also help build a community around it.
What We Need & What the Community Gets
Development needs: We have planed a 4-6 months development period. Right now we are a team of three volunteers. We need to enhance our team with both volunteers and hired developers as well. This will cut development time by almost 2 years and we will be able to deliver the platform faster. We also need cloud hosting infrastructure.
The calculated effort for 4-6 months cloud hosting, development effort and a community website is around 16,500 USD. This amount also includes continuous hosting, development improvements and support for a longer period of time.
Why are we excited about this project
We want to make a change in the way knowledge and teachings are delivered in developing countries.
There are a lot of teachers all over the world who have the will and desire to deliver their knowledge to developing countries’ students, but they don’t know how and they don’t have a channel for doing it. We must connect students with teachers and vice-versa.
The Evaluated Impact of such a Platform
More than 60% of students who qualify for education in the developing countries are not able to join due to limited physical infrastructure. The concept of brick classrooms has to be replaced with click technology, especially in developing countries where the classroom is often not existent at all. The World Wide Web and advances in Open Source Software have led to an eLearning Revolution, where students can access a plethora of knowledge, easily and conveniently Development Challenges.
We are planning on using social media as well as a dedicated website/blog to spread the word and build a supporting community. The development has already begun. The principal technologies used are PHP/MySQL (LAMP Stack). We are using MVC or Model-View-Controller which is a software architecture, or design pattern, that is used in software engineering, whose fundamental principle is based on the idea that the logic of an application should be separated from its presentation. Put simply, I would say that MVC is simply a better way of separating the logic of the application from the display.
The proposed SaaS based application is intended for schools, NGOs and Public Institutions (from now on referred to as “Users”). The Users will be offered 2 possibilities for the service:
- The Users can use the platform as a service where the Users use the platform with their own teachers and students.
- The users will be using the platform which will be hosted in the Cloud by some appointed NGO or Public Institution that will serve as a central hub for the free service.
The application allows students to learn languages (or other subjects) remotely delivered from teachers all over the world. This increases the exchange of knowledge and ideas. Further, this provides an intellectual growth of the student since they will be trained by mother tongue language speakers. For example: Students that want to learn English can be taught by professional English language teachers from across UK or US. The access to the platform is not limited to the User’s physical location.
We already have a detailed requirements document and a project development plan. Right now the challenges we are facing are related to the expenses related with the development of such a project and rallying a community of developers and supporters around it. We are hoping to overcome the challenges with our dedicated work and enthusiasm and your support.
Thanks a lot for your interest and involvement!