The University of California at Berkeley, the University of Queensland and the Concord Consortium also first contributed to edX. Stanford contributed code for real-time chat and bulk email, Berkeley contributed software for forums and automated grading and Queensland contributed a discussion tool that will be piloted in July.

These early partnerships resulted in the the source code being freely available to the public several months earlier than originally planned.

“There was a moment where everybody looked at our code and said ‘we think you’re doing it the right way and we want to help you,’” Rubin said. “And they convinced us to let them them help us.”

After figuring out some security issues, edX  had prepared the code for full release in just six weeks.

From finding new ways to grade assignments to helping internationalize the courses, edX’s code is now out there for anyone who thinks they can contribute to improving the platform and its functions, said James Tauber, the platform’s open source community manager.

“We’re doing this to make the platform better and we’re really keen to get people contributing,” Tauber said. “It’s about improving accessibility to education.”

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