September 23, 2017

A new online learning platform from New Zealand

The Open Polytechnic, New Zealand

The Open Polytechnic, New Zealand

Open Polytechnic (2015) Open Polytechnic launches online learning platform Lower Hutt NZ: Open Polytechnic

I’m not sure the world needs another LMS (sorry, an ‘online learning platform’) but this one, called iQualify and built from scratch by New Zealand’s major distance learning organization, has a number of features that advance LMSs to the next level, such as:

  • being designed from scratch for use on multiple devices (computers, tablets and mobile phones)
  • supporting multimedia content (text, video)
  • virtual study notes linked to course materials
  • interactive quizzes
  • inbuilt assessment tools
  • learning analytics.

Perhaps more importantly, the platform design is based on the Open Polytechnic’s ‘almost 70 years of expertise in learning design’.

The Open Polytechnic is marketing iQualify to employers, industry and professional organisations for online training. There’s not much detail on the iQualify web site, though.

I just hope this will not be yet another ‘in-house’ online learning platform design that hits the dust, such as the University of Phoenix’s adaptive-learning LMS that it has just abandoned. In the meantime, though, I can hear the groans all the way from New Zealand to Vancouver as faculty switch their courses over to the new platform. I wonder if this cost of change is ever factored in to LMS budgeting decisions.

I’d be interested in getting some views on this platform from users of the system.

Comments

  1. Hi Tony,

    I got a quick look at iQualify yesterday and spoke at length with someone who uses it a lot. I have to say it looks great and has lots of features that I really like. User feedback (from designers and students) is very positive and I gather user engagement is high. I have to say that I don’t really think of it as an LMS. It is very much a delivery platform for wholly online courses which is something that I wouldn’t necessarily use a mainstream LMS for although I know that many institutions do just that.

    It may not meet every use case and is perhaps best suited to undergraduate and sub degree disciplines. For Masters level courses (particularly in creative disciplines) which is my focus you may want something that gives learners a little more agency but is to take nothing away from what’s been achieved by the Open Polytechnic.

    Cheers

    Mark

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