OLI Statistics Courseware Enhancement Project

As part of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Next Generation Courseware Challenge, OLI at Stanford received a grant to update and extend the OLI statistics courseware and move it to an open source platform.

We invite faculty who teach statistics to participate in the project.


Courseware Updates

We will update the courseware in 4 important areas:

  1. Statistical Content: We will update the statistics content based on advances in data science and in statistics education, on requests for additional topics from you and other statistics faculty, and on the data collected from a multitude of users over the past 10 years. 
  2. Pedagogical Approaches: Working with several learning scientists, we will update and add theory-based interventions to improve student learning.
  3. Adaptability and Modularity:  The Open edX platform and authoring tools will support faculty and instructors to make modifications to their individual course.
  4. Analytics and Reporting:  A new Outcomes Analytics Service (OAS) will provide real-time information to instructors and students.  The new OAS statistical learning models, parameters, and algorithms will be openly available to support iterative improvements.

If you are using or have used the OLI statistics courseware and would like to give feedback on how the courseware should be extended/enhanced, please complete this survey


Timeline for the project

  • January-August 2015:  Faculty and students use the existing OLI statistics courseware running on the existing servers at Carnegie Mellon University. 
  • January – August 2015: updates to the courseware and porting of the courseware to the Stanford University version of the Open edX open source platform. 
  • August 2015 -December 2016: Piloting and continued improvement of new courseware on the new platform.  Formal evaluation studies of the effectiveness of the courseware in multiple environments.  
  • January 2017- onward: Continued use and improvement of the courseware.  


How Can I Participate?

Interested faculty can participate in the project in the following ways:

  • Use and Evaluate:  Faculty use individual modules or an entire set of modules to support teaching and learning in their blended or online course.  The OLI design team will seek your feedback on what does and does not work in the actual use of OLI courseware and the analytics reporting system. 
  • Collaborate & Create: Faculty contribute their domain expertise in the collaborative design of the courseware modules and skill maps.  The amount of time and commitment varies quite a bit. Some faculty may simply review and provide feedback on modules and prototypes. Others may author original content, activities, and assessments. We are happy to find a level of involvement that is right for you.  

If you are interested in potentially participating, please let us know via this survey.


Frequently Asked Questions

What will be the ongoing  fee for the courseware?
The courseware developed during this grant will be openly licensed and there will be a free Open Education Resource (OER) version available. From August 1, 2015-December 31, 2016,  the courseware and the feedback and analytics services will be completely free on the new platform for participating partners.  Beginning January 1, 2017 there will be a fee of $20/student that will cover the cost of hosting and technical support, and provide funds for ongoing upgrades to the courseware. The fee is to cover additional services and not for access to the content, which will remain free. Partners may also choose to host and provide technical support for their own instance of the open source platform and courseware. 

What is the relationship between OLI at Stanford and OLI at Carnegie Mellon?
In September 2013, the founding director of OLI left Carnegie Mellon to join the faculty at Stanford University, and, along with several OLI staff, founded OLI at Stanford. OLI at Stanford and OLI at Carnegie Mellon continue to collaborate on the science, design, research, collaboration and iterative improvement elements that are so core to the OLI approach.  Stanford University and Carnegie Mellon University are each institutions with deep expertise in learning science, technology and technology-enhanced learning. OLI at Stanford and OLI at Carnegie Mellon share the approach and philosophy that is the essence of OLI.  At the same time, each acts as a distinct organization, leveraging the particular strengths and expertise of each of our institutions.  Our collective goal is to instantiate the OLI approach in courses on any platform that is architected to appropriately support such elements.  

What is the relationship between OLI at Stanford and the for-profit company Acrobatiq?
When Acrobatiq was first launched, the expectation was that it would provide hosting and technical support on behalf of Carnegie Mellon for OLI courses; however, Carnegie Mellon has decided to continue to host and support the OLI courses internally and not outsource development, distribution and support.   While OLI at Stanford continues to collaborate with former colleagues at Carnegie Mellon on both learning research and OLI development projects, OLI at Stanford has no relationship with Acrobatiq.