In order to empower our clients to maximize their learning initiatives, eThink Education strives to create the best Learning Management System (LMS) experience possible for our clients. Last month, we announced that we have joined forces with Open LMS alongside newly acquired eCreators, becoming a part of the wider Learning Technologies Group (LTG) plc. This exciting next evolution will help us continue to provide our award-winning solutions to our clients with the added benefit of a larger team of technology experts to support them and an expanded portfolio of solutions and services that we’re now able to offer.
However, during this transition, Moodle chose to end their formal partnership with eThink, inspiring some questions from our clients as well as the general market. We wanted to take the opportunity to answer some of those questions publicly and to reaffirm our commitment to providing exceptional LMS support and solutions for open-source Moodle.
With a team comprised of Moodle evangelists and some of the best Moodle experts in the industry, we remain committed to supporting the open-source Moodle project as best as we can as it is important to our clients, employees, and our ethos as a company. The possibilities that an open-source LMS solution presents to the eLearning market are truly endless, and we look forward to spearheading future innovation around Moodle that can help our clients reach their learning and talent management goals.
Here are answers to some of the most common questions our team has received from our Moodle clients about this next evolution…
1. If eThink is no longer a Certified Moodle Partner, can they still support my Moodle site?
Absolutely! Moodle is an open-source software, so we can continue to support, host, and service your Moodle site the same way we have been with no changes or interruptions.
2. Are we still technically using Moodle as our LMS, or are we now using Open LMS as our LMS?
You are still using Moodle by eThink. Moodle is an open-source product, so no changes have occurred to the platform you are using.
3. My understanding is that Open LMS is not open source – is this correct?
This is not correct. Open LMS is core Moodle plus a few custom plugins. The custom plugins are not open source, but they do not need to be used. The Open LMS product itself is open-source Moodle.
4. If eThink is no longer a Certified Moodle Partner, will the information in Moodle Docs still be relevant to our LMS platform?
Yes. Moodle is Moodle, it is open source and available to all. All Moodle Docs remain relevant to any organizations or individual who has a Moodle site.
5. Will we still be able to search and use plugins from the Moodle.org plugins directory?
Yes. All plugins that you could use with your Moodle site previously are still available and able to be used on your Moodle site.
6. Will we be able to take advantage of future Moodle improvements and changes in new Moodle versions, or will upgrades now be specific to Open LMS?
Future Moodle improvements will continue to be applied during upgrades, similar to how we have conducted upgrades to this point.
7. What is the relationship between Open LMS and Blackboard?
There is no current relationship between Open LMS and Blackboard. Though Open LMS was previously owned by Blackboard, that is no longer the case. Since becoming independent from Blackboard, Open LMS has built a client experience and philosophy much closer to what you already expect from eThink.
8. How will pricing and future contracts change now that ownership of eThink has changed?
There are no pricing or contact changes currently. If you have a current contract with eThink, that will continue to remain valid.
9. We chose eThink as our vendor because of the flexibility it offered. Is that going to change?
eThink’s Moodle clients will continue to be supported on their existing Moodle sites with no changes to flexibility due to Open LMS’s acquisition of eThink. Moodle’s open-source nature means that it can be hosted by any organization, so eThink clients still have the flexibility to move to self-hosting or another Moodle provider down the road if they choose, while new clients to eThink & Open LMS will still be able to maintain a seamless transition from another Moodle provider to us.
10. What changes should we anticipate?
eThink’s co-founders, Brian Carlson and Cheryl Patsavos, will be moving to leadership positions within Open LMS and the entire eThink team will continue to support your LMS as usual. Brian Carlson, eThink’s CEO, will be taking over as Head of Sales at Open LMS, and Cheryl Patsavos, eThink’s COO, will be taking over as Head of Customer Success. One of the reasons that eThink chose to go down this new path with Open LMS is because Open LMS is committed to maintaining the same quality of customer service that eThink has created. Our goal is to carry eThink’s practices forward into this new organization and continue to build an even better experience for our current and future clients.
This transition is just beginning, and we are sure the process will bring some changes over time, but we are committed to continuing our values of open communication and transparency. If you are an eThink client with any additional questions, please reach out to the eThink team via ZenDesk. If you are a community member, please direct any questions to email@example.com or contact us.
Read more about our next evolution with Open LMS in our recent blog post.
Interested in learning more about the New Open LMS? Hear from the new Open LMS leadership team on what you can expect to see from Open LMS in the coming months.
Or, reach out for an individual demonstration to learn more.