I am putting together a very brief presentation about flipping an LMS with an open + collaborative platform. Here is what I’ve got so far:
Flip it Good! Flipping the LMS with an Open + Collaborative Platform
Do you have unmet pedagogical goals due to the constraints of your current LMS? Do you want to have a better experience for your students and yourself? In preparing his Fall 2015 CMPT-363 (User Interface Design) course at Simon Fraser University, instructor and interaction designer Paul Hibbitts faced these same challenges. His solution was to ‘flip the LMS’ by designing and developing an alternative front-end to the institutional LMS Canvas (http://paulhibbitts.net/cmpt-363-153/). In this approach, the LMS was used only for elements it was best suited for (i.e. student records, grades, etc.) with all other elements handled by an open extensible platform completely under his control.
This article is now outdated. Please refer to the Grav Course Companion Getting Started Guide.
Here is a quick sampling of some Grav CMS Course Companion workflows:
Video 1. Simple install of the course companion on a Web server (in under 30 seconds).
Figure 1. Flipped-LMS approach using Grav CMS, GitHub, and Deploy.
What is a flipped LMS?
A flipped LMS approach is where an open platform, in the control of course participants, serves as an alternative front-end to the institutional LMS
Figure 1. Flipped-LMS approach.
Why flip the LMS?
To support pedagogical goals unmet by current LMS/platform
To deliver a better student (and facilitator) experience
To increase capability of access, sharing and collaboration
As a modern flat-file CMS, Grav can take full advantage of today’s ecosystem of open and collaborative editing services, such as GitHub or GitLab. In this article we will look at how to easily use Grav with GitHub Desktop (which uses GitHub and Git for source control) and the automatic deployment service Deploy to result in a very efficient, open and collaborative workflow. No scripting or command line interactions will be required, I promise.
One of the (many) great things about using the open source CMS Grav for a flipped-LMS approach is that no database is required, which makes running a local copy of Grav on your computer for testing purposes a very straightforward process. This also makes deployment to a Web server a breeze - just a simple folder copy.
But first, what does the term ‘flat-file CMS’ mean? In a nutshell, content is stored as individual text files rather than in a database.
The fact that a flat-file CMS uses files vs. database is secondary: the game changer is the ECOSYSTEM available, i.e. GitHub, Markdown, etc.— Hibbitts Design (@...