This is a guide on how to setup your Grav Course Hub for a single course using the Admin Panel (accessed by adding ‘/admin’ to the Browser URL of your Grav site) or directly working with files. This guide assumes you have the Grav Course Hub up and running and that you are familiar with the basics of Grav.
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.
Based on the positive feedback of his students and his own experience, he decided to create an open source course hub built with the CMS (Content Management System) Grav to help other instructors get started in flipping their LMS with an open + collaborative platform.
In this presentation Paul will share his flipped-LMS approach and introduce his ready-to-run open source Grav Course Hub for use by other educators.
This article is now outdated. Please refer to the Grav Course Companion Getting Started Guide.
Figure 1. Flipped-LMS approach using Grav CMS, GitHub, and Deploy.
Here is what I have in mind so far for a possible ebook or workshop about Grav CMS for instructors:
Here is a draft workshop description:
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 this workshop, Paul will introduce Grav, the modern flat-file (no database) CMS and his open source course companion to help other instructors flip their LMS to overcome these challenges. Participants should be comfortable with editing text files, connecting to a Web server, and be familiar with basic Web page elements.
And here is a peek at the in-progress slides:
Thoughts or comments? You can find me on Twitter at @hibbittsdesign.
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
What to “Flip” Your LMS With?
Ideally an open and collaborative platform, as shown below:
Figure 2. Open + collaborative Web platform.
Figure 3. Flipped-LMS approach using an open + collaborative Web platform.
For example, the modern flat-file CMS Grav along with GitHub and an automatic deployment service such as Deploy can be used quite effectively by tech-savvy educators as an open and collaborative platform to support a flipped-LMS approach:
Figure 4. Flipped-LMS approach using Grav CMS, GitHub, and Deploy.
When flipping your LMS what are some key experience design goals?
Student experience design goals:
Facilitator experience design goals:
Controllable (i.e. manageable)
Pliable (i.e. flexible)
Enjoyable (hey, instructors are people too…)
Want to get started with flipping your own LMS? Since this article was written I’ve built an open source project using the Grav CMS to help other tech-savvy instructors - explore the on-line demo and then head over to Grav Course Hub Getting Started Guide to get going.
While trying to visualize my flipped-LMS approach using an open and collaborative platform, it’s become apparent that I am looking at two distinct, though related, models.
An open and collaborative learning platform enables both students and instructors to contribute directly to their shared online environment.— Hibbitts Design (@hibbittsdesign) December 15, 2015
A flipped-LMS approach is where an open platform, in the full control of course participants, serves as an alternative front-end to the LMS.— Hibbitts Design (@hibbittsdesign) December 15, 2015
Looks like I've got two concepts I need to visualize: ✅Flipped-LMS approach ✅Open and collaborative learning platform (using GitHub & Grav)— Hibbitts Design (@hibbittsdesign) December 15, 2015
For my situation, I use the flat-file CMS Grav to provide an open and collaborative platform when using a flipped-LMS approach.
In a recent discussion the question of how a traditional LMS implementation compares to a flipped LMS was asked. Here are my initial thoughts so far, based on my experiences with several institutional LMSs and using the flat-file CMS Grav in a flipped-LMS approach:
|Traditional LMS Implementation||Flipped-LMS Approach|
|Institutional Control||Instructor & Student Control|
So, why would course facilitators want to utilize a flipped-LMS approach?
Here are three primary reasons that come to mind:
I am excited to be presenting my approach of a Flipped-LMS at Simon Fraser University’s DEMOFest 2015 on November 24th.
Here is the description of my session:
Flipping the LMS: Benefits and Lessons Learned of Using an Alternative Front-end to Canvas
Let’s be honest, as course facilitators we want to deliver the best possible online learner experience but at the same time make our own experience as convenient as possible. LMSs, such as Canvas, provide some great pedagogical elements but often fall short when it comes to such things as streamlined course updates, content reuse, easy customization, and providing a truly open platform. The solution? Flip the LMS!
A flipped-LMS is an approach where an open platform, chosen by an instructor, provides an alternative (and preferably collaborative) front-end to their institutional LMS. In this presentation Paul will demonstrate how this approach can produce significant improvements to both the student and instructor experience. Elements from Paul’s personal toolkit to be highlighted will include Canvas (naturally), the open source flat-file CMS Grav, and GitHub Desktop.