This is our best choice of open source e-learning systems we have ever studied. (See page on LMS)
We can strongly recommend it to small and mid-sized companies or organizations
What is Chamilo?
Chamilo is an open-source (under GNU/GPL licensing) e-learning and content management system, aimed at improving access to education and knowledge globally. It is backed up by the Chamilo Association, which has goals including the promotion of the software, the maintenance of a clear communication channel and the building of a network of services providers and software contributors.
The Chamilo project aims at ensuring the availability and quality of education at a reduced cost, through the distribution of its software free of charge, the improvement of its interface for 3rd world countries devices portability and the provision of a free access public e-learning campus.
Chamilo comes in two versions. The LMS (or "1.*") version directly builds on Dokeos. Chamilo LCMS (or 3.0) is a completely new software platform for e-learning and collaboration. (Wikipedia)
The Chamilo project was officially launched in 2010 by a considerable part of the contributing community of the Dokeos software, after growing discontent on the communication policy inside the Dokeos community and a series of choices that were making parts of the community insecure about the future of developments. As such, it is considered a fork of Dokeos (at least in its 1.8 series). The reaction to the fork was immediate, with more than 500 active users registering on the Chamilo forums in the first fortnight and more contributions collected in one month than in the previous whole year. (Read this article about this move on the Chamilo site)
The origins of Chamilo's code date back to 2000, with the start of the Claroline project, which was forked in 2004 to launch the Dokeos project. In 2010, it was forked again with the publication of Chamilo 1.8.
Since June 2010, the Chamilo Association has been a legally registered non-profit association under Belgian law. The association was created to serve the general goal of improving the Chamilo project's organization and to avoid a conflict of interest between the organization controlling the software project decision process and the best interests of the community using the software. Its founding members, also its first board of directors, are composed of 7 members, of which 3 are from the private e-learning sector and 4 are from the public educational sector.
Philosophy and features
Chamilo is a new, open source and easy to use e-learning and collaboration platform. It’s free, flexible and extensible.
Chamilo refers to ‘chameleon’ guaranteeing a smooth integration in current work-flows both in business and education.
In 2010, a group of entrepreneurs and engineers started the Chamilo project with a clear goal : building the best open source software solution to help teachers build compelling educational content more easily to provide better access to education.
Today, the Chamilo software is used by more than 5,000 organizations around the globe, enabling easier and faster propagation of knowledge, and better acquisition of new skills, with precision personal tracking as well as global progress watch, from more than 180 countries around the world. Chamilo is used by millions of students around the world.
Chamilo, based on the Claroline and Dokeos systems, is organized around the concept of space associated to a course or a pedagogical activity. Each course space provides a full range of useful features, enabling teachers to:
- Author content (SCORM 1.2 compatible, using UTF-8 international characters)
- Use video conferencing
- Write a course description
- Publish documents in any format (SCORM, text, PDF, HTML, video...)
- Administer public and private forums, embedded social learning network
- Propose assignments to be handed in online
- Tracking of users progress: See the statistics of the users activity
- Use the Wiki to write collaborative documents
- Manage courses, users and learning paths (Advanced: Timezones, Multi-institutions mode (with central management portal, including SOAP web services to manage remotely)
- Create time-controlled exams, with automated generation of certificates
Versions of Chamilo
1) Chamilo LMS: This is the "classic" Chamilo system, based on Claroline and Dokeos heritage.
Chamilo is a fully-fledged e-learning system. Teachers and trainers are up and teaching in no time. Some users report a 1/5 ratio in training time compared to the most famous open-source LMS to get them ready. Trainers can get to work in just one day!
2) Chamilo LCMS connect: A brandnew branch of the Chamilo Suite.
This Chamilo flavour offers performant tools for smooth collaboration and brilliant learning. The basic concept is connectivity:
- connect with your favorite sites on your adaptable homepage
- publish your content in an LMS
- collaborate with peers
- combine learning & working .
Content objects are published or shared from a central repository.
More about Chamilo?
- Below, you can find a short introduction video of the Chamilo LMS.
- There is also a collection of Chamilo videos on Youtube.
- Here is the Chamilo Facebook page
Is Chamilo the perfect LMS for me?
That depends on your expectations and needs. Chamilo can be a very good choice if you agree with it's concept and philosophy. (see above)
Compared to Moodle, in which it is not included, you can create leaning paths or a curriculum, like in Claroline and Dokeos. This is very important for many LMS users like schools but also for companies.
Here is the link to our demo iTroniX Chamilo LMS platform. Contact Filip if you want to know more about it.
Recent Chamilo news
We added a video with impressions of the "2014 Chamilo Benelux User Group" event at the Artevelde university in Gent on May 20th.
For this event, the founder of the Chamilo project YANNICK WARNIER flew over from Peru.
Here are the main messages he presented about Chamilo LMS: