What are the pros and cons for Open edX platform?

What are the pros and cons for Open edX - compared to WordPress?

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Not sure why this post was withdrawn. I’m the author.

Josh wrote a post, and then withdrew it. Your post is still here.

You can’t really compare Open edX and Wordpress, as they do very different things. Wordpress was originally a blogging platform, and is still focused on publishing static pages. Open edX is an online learning platform focused on authoring and delivering courses, including rich assessments, grading, and so forth.

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I use WordPress to provide links to education courses (no blogging). This provides a flexible way to deliver courses (at the student’s convenience). See NDAcademy.FoxPing.com for some examples.

I’m not sure what “rich assessments” means?

I do not attempt to grade students. The purpose is to simplify topics so they can be understood by almost everyone.

Could a similar platform be incorporated into edX?

Many years ago, I realized there is nothing difficult to learn. The hardest was finding the right person to explain it. That is much easier now with the Internet!

If you simply want to list external resources then Open edX might not be a good fit since it does require more effort and cost to set up and maintain. It provides more specialised tools and features for those authoring and running educational courses.

If you are authoring new content, it might be worth trying out Open edX. A lot of Open edX hosting providers (including the company I work for) have free trials.

Thanks for the clarification. I am authoring new content. What is the end result of a free trial?

@eisenbeis, if you are convinced with the product you can either buy services from the providers or host it by yourself!!!

What is the “product” end result?

If you are asking what does Open edX do, then openedx.org has a quick summary. Taking any course on edx.org will give you a sense of the learners’ experience.

If you are asking what the service providers offer, you’ll need to get in touch with them.

To clarify my question, does edX upload video clips to the edX website exclusively, or can edX provide links to other websites? What, exactly, do “service provides” provide.

Open edX is different than edX. edX is one website: edx.org. You cannot put content on edx.org. Only edX partners put content there. The partners are listed on this page: https://www.edx.org/schools-partners

Open edX is software that people use to create other online learning sites. There are thousands of them. Here is a page that lists some of them: https://openedx.atlassian.net/wiki/spaces/COMM/pages/162245773/Sites+powered+by+Open+edX+Platform

Open edX service providers can help you create your own site if you wish. For details of how they do that, and what they offer, you will have to contact them.

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Hi Ned,

Thanks for clarifiying.

It would be very helpful, if the headers of webpages included your comments about “edX” vs. “Open edX” — very important!

It appears that edX is primarly for colleges? Open edX is for everyone else?

I see your name at https://openedx.atlassian.net/wiki/spaces/COMM/pages/162245773/Sites+powered+by+Open+edX+Platform

This appears to have what I was seeking => links to other websites.

The bottom section lists courses by language. It would be good to have a category after seperating by language. Such as:

Computer Science

Computer Science


In the middle, it asks for other ideas - but no name of who to contact.

How does one add links to this webpage?


You can create an account in the wiki and edit pages, but: I don’t see how topical categories for courses across all these sites will work: it will be difficult to maintain. Are you proposing to start categorizing courses yourself? Even coming up with a taxonomy that would work across all Open edX sites seems difficult.

Hi Ned,

The current edX is challenging for customers to use.

A good role model is Khan Academy (don’t see a way to add an attachment, so I’ll list a section of a Khan Academy webpage).

Algebra - Trigonometry - Statistics & probability - Calculus - Physics - Chemistry - Organic chemistry - Biology - Electrical engineering - Computer programming - Arts & humanities - US history - Economics & finance - Macroeconomics - Microeconomics - etc.

Students can easily select a topic. They do not need to spend hours trying to find relevant topics. It’s easy to understand why “millions” of students like Khan Academy.

In addition, Khan Academy video clips get straight to the point. We never see the instructor. We never hear the instructor’s crediantials. We just get the facts. Many video clips are short (ten minutes or less). This is another reason students like Khan Academy.

The video clip — “Adding and subtracting fractions” => https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52ZlXsFJULI — is a good example. (This video clip is old. Go to the Khan Academy website where new types of images are in the video clips.)

Categorizing by topic, on edX, would make it easier for everyone to navigate. In addition, instructors could use Khan Academy video clips as an example.

The categorizing should be done by the authors. Authors would identify the relevent categories and languages.

Authors could be provided with a simple webpage that allows authors to select check boxes for topic categories and languages - a title / brief description - and the link to their website.

Two more relevant video clips are:

“Let’s teach for mastery – not test scores” => https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MTRxRO5SRA&t=455s

“Let’s use video to reinvent education” => https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nTFEUsudhfs&t=1041s

These are exceptionally solid concepts. A good way to help all of us learn.

Thinking more about this, I believe the following could be a good way to categorize.

            Khan Academy (English) => https://www.khanacademy.org/
            Bozeman Science (English) => http://www.bozemanscience.com/
            ND Academy (English) => https://ndacademy.foxping.com/
        Tuition or Audit
            Penn State (English, French, Spanish, Chinese) => https://extension.psu.edu/
            Akamai (English, Spanish) => https://akamai.com/
            Stanford (English, French, Spanish, Greek) => https://lagunita.stanford.edu/

    Computer Science



(the items listed above are only an example)

Rather than redo everything on edX, it would be good to provide one edX webpage with the above suggestions as a starting point. Have that webpage provide links only - no video clips. Over time, it could be developed with additional ideas to improve it.

Trying to maintain an edX new webpage(s) would be overwhelming. YouTube is a good example. No one person makes the decisions. Leave it open ended, with some guidelines (as mentioned earlier).

Covid-19 increases the urgency to help students find online courses (free or tuition based). The edX website could play an important role in a potential increased demand.

It would be good if some leaders at edX took on this challenge.

@eisenbeis It’s not clear to me whether you understand the difference between edX and Open edX. I’ve tried a number of times to clarify that. I think you are talking about Open edX, since edX already has a search page for people to find courses.

There is no central registry of all Open edX sites, and especially not for all Open edX courses. That could be built some day, but it doesn’t exist now, and no one has attempted it. The wiki page listing sites is editable by all, and people add their sites as they wish.

Sorry, I don’t know what this means. It seems like you are looking for something very different than what Open edX currently offers.

Hi Ned,

I understand. My comments are simply a request.

Thanks for the prompt responses!

Dear Ned,
I want to make sure I understood this correctly.
-OpenEdX allows me to create, host and distribute online courses with my own look and feel or the standard EdX one?
-I can create my own content or import existing EdX content on to my own instance of OpenEdX?
Thank you for your help!

Yes, you can create, host and distributes your own courses. It is not as easy to customize the look, though there are service providers who can help you.

Content from edx.org is not available for other sites to use. Those courses are created, copyrighted, and owned by their authoring institutions.

What’s the difference between edX and Open edX? It’s a constant source of confusion for people who are new to edX and Open edX. We get this question so frequently, we decided to write a blog post to answer it once and for all! https://www.appsembler.com/blog/open-edx-overview/

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