Announcing the release of Sakai 11!

Sakai 11 has had a facelift! The new version of Sakai supports a responsive design meaning that it can be used on any device with any screen size, any place, anytime, anywhere! The new release represents one of the biggest, if not the biggest, improvement in Sakai in years. Sakai 11 is, of course, still 100% open source and its redesign was informed by UX testing with real users and delivered by the worldwide Sakai community.



Since I've come on board to the Sakai project, 4 years ago, we had a major upgrade to Sakai 2.9 and another to Sakai 10, with a concomitant change of naming from 2.x to sequential number of 10, 11, and so forth for major releases.
For example, Sakai 2.9 was highlighted by the addition of one of our most popular tools, Lessons. Lessons delivers structured content to students. And in Sakai 10 we were the first LMS  to adopt IMS LTI 2.0 (Learning Tools Interoperability, a way to plug and play external tools [1]),  plus the addition of Peer and Group Assignments,  and two new powerful tools in Signup and Delegated access, and much more.
Sakai 11 is a very clean, professional product. It’s responsive, it’s easy to use, and it’s powerful. Items in the system are more intuitively labelled and small but important navigation changes make the interface easier to use.
Our new Gradebook has a spreadsheet style entry that is slick and easy, our tummy tuck, if you will.

Lessons is like Sakai's improved core strength from working out at the gym. The latest updates to our Lessons tool make it easy to add multiple columns with different background colors, but also provide access to the CSS level for power users.
The Sakai 11 release is significant not only in terms of product and direction, it is also significant because of the community. In this release, perhaps more than any other, the Sakai community self-organized around prioritized work to come together and make their vision a reality.

Notre Dame collaborated closely with Duke University to identify top features that the both wished to have in Sakai 11.
NYU (New York University) and Marist College took the lead in organizing QA testing for Sakai, in what proved to be the most thorough and best measured QA effort we’ve had in a long time.
S2U, our Spanish speaking universities and institutions stepped up big time to make sure that the structure of responsive design was more than just skin deep and provides a great base upon which to build and refine further.

And, as usual, great individual contributors like our famous tattooed Dr. Chuck Severance made us the first LMS in the world to support the emerging IMS Content Item [2] standard, building on the transformative and impactful work of IMS LTI (Learning Tools Interoperability) because Sakai is not a silo. 

We see the other learning management systems (Blackboard Learn, Canvas, Brightspace, Moodle, etc) as part of a larger learning eco-system to which we belong, and with whom we wish to develop and implement standards that help systems interoperate, providing you greater freedom, choice, and teaching and learning tools for everyone!
This is Sakai's attitude. We don't just want to be a great learning management system, we aspire to influence and inspire the edtech world for the better. That's why Sakai is 100% open in it's licensing, 100% open in it's community participation, and 100% open in how it can be influenced. If you want influence over the direction of your learning management system, Sakai might be right for you! If you want to make a difference in the educational technology sector, Sakai might be your kind of community, with passionate people around the globe.
If you want to learn more about Sakai 11, we have a snazzy video and a succinct overview of features [3] and detailed functional and technical release notes ([4] and [5] respectively). 
Sakai 11 we're not just another pretty LMS face, we're  awesome because we've turned it up to 11! 

Neal Caidin
Sakai Community Coordinator, Apereo Foundation


[1] IMS LTI -
[2] IMS Content Item message -
[3] Sakai 11 features overview -
[4] Sakai 11 detailed release notes -
[5] Sakai 11 technical documentation -