ATutorSpaces Features

These are some of the key features you will find on your ATutorSpaces site. For a full list of features, refer to the ATutor Features List. Also see Ten Reasons to Choose ATutorSpaces.

Modular Course Tools

Select from a wide range of tools to create custom courses for a wide range of purposes. Instructors can choose only the tools they need and turn features on or off as they need them. Tools can be added to a course as navigation tabs, as side menu blocks, or as Home page or Student Tools page modules. Administrators can create a default selection of tools for newly created course, and turn features on or off system wide. Services are available for creating new add-on features or modifying existing ones.

A layout of modular course tools
The opening screen of the preferences wizard

Personal Preferences

Students and instructors can configure their teaching or learning environment to their personal liking. Choose from 10 different themes. Enable or disable navigation features. Change colours, fonts, and text size to make the screen easier to see. Select from visual, auditory, text, or sign language alternatives for content. Choose the language for the environment and for the content.

Integrated Multimedia

Develop rich multimedia enabled content. Easily link in YouTube or Vimeo videos. Upload video or audio content. Embed flash media into course content. Combine media and provide alternatives where accessibility or technology is limited. Use tools such as Universal Subtitles to caption video content.

A YouTube video embedded in course content.
A screenshot of the ATutor content editor.

Content Authoring

Create or assemble learning content of virtually any sort. Integrate external Web content into courses. Use existing open content and modify it to your needs. Gather resource files, documents, and other secondary materials and make them available to students within course content. Use the accessibility evaluator to ensure content will be accessible to all students.

Content Import/Export

Easily import or export standardized content. Package the content you have created in IMS Common Cartridges, IMS Content Packages, or IMS QTI test packages, and move them between courses, between ATutorSpaces and the AContent repository, or move them to other systems that support IMS specifications. Import content from systems that produce non-compliant packages, and repackage it in a compliant format. Create backups of content for safekeeping.

The ATutor content import/export tools.
The ATutor  OpenLearn search screen.

OpenLearn Content

(TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE) Enable the OpenLearn module to gain access to more than 600 freely available courses on a wide range of topics. Search through content. Download courses in Content Packages or Common Cartridges. Import content directly from OpenLearn into courses. Pick and choose pieces of content, modify that content, and assemble it as new custom course materials. Package your customized OpenLearn content and store or share it through the AContent repository.

AContent Repository

Use the public AContent repository to find and share learning content. Develop new content there, or import existing content and enhance its accessibility, or enhance its usability with AccessForAll content adaptations. Package content in IMS Common Cartridges, IMS Content Packages, and IMS QTI tests or question banks. AContent is a public repository requiring no account with ATutorSpaces, open to any educator who wishes to develop and/or share rich elearning content.

Viewing learning content in AContent.
The ATutor question bank a question editor

Tests & Surveys

Develop a wide range of assessments to evaluate student progress, or to gather research data through custom anonymous or registered surveys. Provide custom feedback. Present assessments on a single page or present them one question at a time. Randomize required and optional test questions, or present them in a specific order. Assign tests to individuals, groups, or an entire class of students. Store test results and distribute them using the gradebook. Export tests or a question bank, and import those into other courses, into AContent, or into other systems that conform to IMS QTI specifications.

Social Networking

ATutor Social provides a networking environment that allows students and instructors to develop contacts and keep in touch with friends and classmates. Develop special interest groups as part of a course or develop them outside the course environment. Share photos and develop a personal profile. Control privacy setting to ensure personal information is only available to selected groups. Link in other networks such as Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, or LinkedIn. Choose from thousands of "Gadgets" to add tools, widgets, games, and other applications to customize a personal networking space. Turn Networking off if it's not needed, or turn the LMS off and use ATutorSpaces exclusively as a private social network. Gather useful gadgets and make them available to others in a social network.

The networking module with the Twitter gadget running.
The instructor forum editing utility.

Communication

Use the discussion forums to communicate within and across courses. Develop within course forums for discussing course topics, and create private group forums to allow project groups to communicate among themselves. Create shared forums such as a Help forum or a Lounge forum that can be accessed across courses. Export forums to archive course discussions, or to make past class dialog available to future classes as a learning resource. Use the chat for synchronous course discussions, or perhaps to conduct office hours. Keep chat transcripts for future reference. Add on the BigBlueButton video conferencing module to schedule face-to-face audio/video meetings, for desktop sharing and file sharing, and to archive meetings for future reference.

File Sharing

Use the file-sharing tool to gather and distribute course documents. Use file-sharing to gather assignments and distribute feedback on project drafts. Students can gather their own files in a personal workspace, and hand in assignments from there. Turn on change tracking to enable collaborative document editing. Create group workspaces for private file sharing within workgroups.

The ATutor File Storage utility.
The ATutor Ecommerce Administrator settings screen.

Integrated Ecommerce

Setup and collect tuition fees for courses. Grant automatic access to courses when tuition is received. Administrators can manage tuition, or instructors can be given that duty. Integrate with the following payment gateways: Moneris USA, Moneris Canada, Beanstream, PayPal, and Mirapay. Services are available for integrating with other gateways.

Accessibility

Ensure that all your students and instructors are able to access courses and course materials, regardless of their ability or disability, and regardless for the technologies they may be using to access the Web. The ATutor system conforms to international Web content accessibility specifications (WCAG 2.0, and others), ensuring the system itself is accessible. It conforms to Web authoring tool accessibility specifications (ATAG 2.0) ensuring that content created in ATutor can be created in an accessible manner. A built in accessibility checker can be used to evaluate the accessibility of the content authored in ATutor. Conformance with IMS AccessForAll and ISO 24751 ensures that content can be developed and delivered that adapts to the needs of individual learners.

The ATutor AccessForAll content preferences screen.
Popup context sensitive help, showing the import/export content handbook page.

Documentation & Support

Find a range of documentation to help get administrators and instructors using their ATutorSpaces effectively. Access the ATutor Handbook through a link at the bottom of every ATutor screen. Search the handbook for specific information, or print the handbook off as a single page to create a hard copy reference. Access specific instructions in the handbook through context sensitive help associated with tools throughout the ATutor environment. Turn off context sensitive help for expert users. Visit the ATutorSpaces YouTube Channel for multimedia-based documentation. See the theme designer, developer, and module developer documentation included in the handbook for more about creating new features and customizing ATutor to your needs if your organization has its own designers and developers. Contact ATutorSpaces through Support Services if you need someone to customize ATutor for you, or if you need personal help using ATutor. Also visit the ATutorSpaces Support Centre to access free support, or visit the atutor.ca support forums to find help from the ATutor open source community.

Mobility

Access courses on a wide range of mobile devices. Review course materials and use tools from anywhere there is wireless Internet or mobile network access. Manage courses or administer the ATutorSpaces system from a mobile device. ATutorSpaces is tested on Iphone, Android, and Blackberry. It's adaptable mobile theming accommodates a variety of other mobile devices. Access courses using a variety of Tablet devices, or use a desktop computer to access ATutorSpaces as if it were a tablet using the "Simplfied Desktop" theme.

Using ATutorSpace on an iPhone.