Enhancing User-Friendliness for Course Creation in Open edX

Hello everyone!

I am reaching out on behalf of various educational institutions, including schools and universities, that leverage the Open edX platform to deliver high-quality educational content to their learners. The versatility and robustness of Open edX, especially its course creation capabilities via Studio, have been instrumental in our efforts to provide comprehensive learning experiences.

However, we’ve encountered a significant challenge that affects the accessibility and usability of some of the platform’s most powerful features for our clients. Specifically, the creation of engaging and interactive course content often requires technical skills beyond the expertise of many of our educators and course designers. Here are a couple of use cases to illustrate our concerns:

  1. Course Overview Creation: Writing detailed Course Overviews, including introductions, prerequisites, and FAQs, necessitates knowledge of HTML formatting. This requirement poses a barrier for those without HTML skills, limiting their ability to fully utilize the course summary page’s potential.

  2. Advanced Problem Types: Utilizing advanced problem types such as Circuit Schematic Builder, Image Mapped Input, and Math Expression Input requires understanding of both HTML and JavaScript. This technical prerequisite restricts many of our users from incorporating these interactive and pedagogically valuable elements into their courses.

The need for technical skills in HTML and JavaScript to use these features effectively has resulted in underutilization of the platform’s capabilities, thereby hindering our mission to provide engaging and interactive learning experiences.

We believe that simplifying the process for creating course content and incorporating advanced features could significantly enhance the usability of Open edX for educators and course designers who might not have extensive technical backgrounds.

To address these challenges, we are interested in exploring the following:

  • The possibility of introducing more intuitive, WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) interfaces for course content creation that reduce or eliminate the need for direct HTML/JavaScript editing.
  • Community-driven initiatives or existing plugins that can help make these advanced features more accessible to all users.

We are eager to hear your thoughts, suggestions, and any solutions that may already exist within the Open edX ecosystem to make the platform even more accessible and user-friendly. Your expertise and feedback are invaluable as we strive to enhance the learning experience for all users.

Thank you for your attention and for your continuous efforts to improve the Open edX platform.

1 Like

Hi @Mahendra - I think making the Course Overview have a WYSIWYG editor would be great. For this change, I’d look at the Product Review Process to make sure your contribution journey goes smoothly.

For better/enhanced problem types, I might suggest looking into creating your own XBlocks / sdk - XBlocks can be created by anyone, independent of the product review process.