06 December, 2012

Liferay to build online environments for regulatory organizations

By Victor Zorin, Enterprise Architect – MyOffice24x7 Pty Ltd
(As presented at the Liferay Symposium, San Francisco , 2012)

Challenges of regulatory environments
What is a regulatory environment? One example is an Australian statutory authority that administers state gambling and liquor laws, including management of licensing and compliance.
We had already worked with them to produce a Liferay-based intranet for employees and several specialised extranet portals.
They wanted us to help them come up with an improved way of managing the issuing and renewal for each of their  100+ types of licenses, which were all currently in paper/scanned format. We discovered that the one major challenge faced by these types of organisations is that end users (customers, applicants) expect an uncomplicated, easy to use, and unified front with which to interact BUT regulatory organisations by nature are comprised of a large number of highly disconnected business stakeholders.

05 December, 2012

Using Liferay Portal as an e-Learning Platform

How to use Liferay Portal 6.x to help deliver digital training to your organization affordably and effectively.

Our goal is to show you how Liferay Portal can be used to build a facility where trainees or students are able to undertake
structured, sequenced coursework
under the supervision and assessment of managers and mentors.

Why Liferay?

Liferay Portal does not ship as an e-Learning product, but it does provide
a solid foundation for one:
·          Strong CMS (content management) functionality: its user, role and community
facilities are already well suited to this task.
·          Attractive set of collaboration portlets (wikis, discussion boards, blogs etc) that ship
with the portal.
·          Easily extensible thanks to JSR-168/286 compliance.

Liferay Portal is capable of delivering many of the facilities offered by existing e-Learning products such as Blackboard or Moodle without the associated costs or troubles.
Filling in the Gaps

Liferay Portal is clearly missing some functionality when it comes to achieving our initial goal:
“... a facility where trainees or students are able to undertake structured, sequenced coursework under the supervision and assessment of managers or mentors”
Our priority in conceiving this e-Learning platform is to maximally take advantage of whatever functionality is offered to us by Liferay Portal (or third-party extensions).
Functionalities that are lacking in Liferay Portal:
·          A facility for students/trainees to undertake exercises or ‘lessons’.
·          Facilities for course administrators and supervisors to monitor progress and undertake assessment of completed exercises.
·          A way to implement a community-module-exercise hierarchical structure (Liferay Portal communities cannot really do this natively).

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