Many users are now turning to Free/Libre 0pen Source Software (OSS, FOSS or FLOSS), as more software developers join the movement to make software available free of charge to everyone. This page provides details of and links to open source software – one of the most important movements in the development of software or e-tools to have impacted on, and continue to impact on, the educational community.
OSS – as the name suggests – is software whose source code is open to modification by a user or developer. It is often contrasted with commercial, proprietary software whose code is protected by copyright from modification. In education, OSS is seen as part of the Open Education Resource movement.
What are the advantages?
Using open source software enables web developers to avoid the dangers of “lock-in” – where once you start using a certain piece of proprietary software you are locked in to using it on a continuing basis. It also avoids the expense of licensing and permits adaptation of the software to local needs. It is this last aspect that appeals to many educators and developers – the ability to modify the source code so as to make the software fit the actual needs of the user.
This clearly has important implications for small institutions, especially those in developing countries that are unable to afford expensive software in the large quantities required for educational purposes. The availability of the source code also makes it easier for such institutions in developing countries to develop local expertise and establish a local software industry.
This “Online and Distance Learning” website is built using open source software – an open source content mangement system called “Drupal”. Hundreds of developers around the world freely contribute their time to create modules and themes to make the system better. If you decide to build a website using a powerful content management system such as Drupal, consider hosting it with SiteGround – the hosting company that specializes in Drupal installations.
What are the implications for the software industry?
Because of the numbers of developers working on each open source software product, high quality can be achieved, e.g., Mozilla Firefox browser (recommended for browsing this site).
Even some of the industry giants have joined the open source software movement, e.g., Microsoft with their open source asp.net.
In April 2009, Microsoft released the ASP.NET MVC source code under the Microsoft Public License (MS-PL). MS-PL is an OSI-approved license. The MS-PL contains no platform restrictions and provides broad rights to modify and redistribute the source code. To learn more about the original release of ASP.NET MVC, read the free ASP.NET MVC PDF tutorial that covers building an end-to-end application (starting literally with File->New Project). For more recent information on Microsoft’s cloud computing platform – Windows Azure – watch the 90 minute end-to-end look provided by Scott Guthrie.
List of schools and programs
For nearly a century, Columbia International University has educated people from a biblical worldview to impact the nations with the message of Christ. Today we continue that effort, offering 21 degree programs for residential undergraduate students, as well as graduate and seminary programs, professional certificates, and convenient online programs for working adults.
- Bachelor of Science in Business
- Bachelor of Science in Human Services
- Associate of Arts in Business
- And more...
The University of Maryland is a public research university in College Park, Maryland. Founded in 1856, the university is the flagship institution of the University System of Maryland. The Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland offers business education both on campus and online. With a network of over 66,000 alumni worldwide and prestigious rankings such as No. 1 Faculty Quality in the U.S. by The Economist, a broad range of programs, certificates and degrees are offered, designed to prepare working professionals to accelerate their career.
- MBA - Information Systems & Business Analytics
- MBA - General
- MBA - Marketing
- And more...
Regent University is one of the nation’s leading academic centers for Christian thought and action.
Founded in 1978, Regent University’s 11,000 students are studying on its 70-acre campus in Virginia Beach, Va., and online around the world. The university offers associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from a Christian perspective in more than 135 program areas including business, communication and the arts, cybersecurity and technology, divinity, education, government, law, leadership, nursing and healthcare, and psychology. Regent University has consistently placed as one of the top colleges in the state of Virginia and, currently, Regent University tops the list of Best Online Bachelor’s Programs in Virginia and is ranked among top national universities by U.S. News & World Report. Along with our commitment to academic excellence, what sets Regent apart is our mission to prepare men and women to excel both in mind and spirit. Our students, faculty and administrators share a calling, founded on biblical principles, to make a significant difference in our world.
- Master of Divinity (M.Div.)
- M.A. in Practical Theology
- M.A. in Film & Television (online)
- And more...
- Northcentral University was founded in 1996 to provide working professionals around the world with unprecedented access to richly engaging, professionally relevant, and academically-rigorous education from a U.S. university.
- As a regionally accredited, private, online and graduate-focused university, NCU offers doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in business, technology management, education, and psychology, as well as doctoral and master’s degrees in marriage and family therapy.
- International Business - D.B.A.
- Leadership in Higher Education - EdS
- MS Organizational Leadership - Nonprofit Management
- And more...
Earn your Master of Accountancy online from the University of North Dakota and become a future-focused accountant with the skills to lead in a profession that’s always in demand in every industry
- Master of Accountancy
- Master of Doctor of Nursing Practice
The Berkeley Advantage®
Preparing students for professional and personal success is what Berkeley College is all about. From career-focused degree and certificate programs offered in some of today’s most in-demand professions to extensive support resources, YOU are at the center of everything we do at Berkeley. Our commitment to students begins with their very first inquiries.
- Online Paralegal Certificate
- BS, Business Data Science
- AAS, Bus Admin-Accounting
- And more...
- Business Management - Bachelor
- Veterinary Technology Alternate Route - Certificate
- Respiratory Therapy
- And more...