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Open Curriculum: DefinitionsScenariosRoadmapSkill setsOpen certificationReferences - Roles
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This roadmap was started at the code sprint at DrupalCon London with Johan Falk, Barry Madore and Heather James. We also consulted the docs team as well to make sure we didn't have overlap. This is a temporary document, used for discussing updates for the open curriculum road map.

Important next steps

  • Find ways to improve communication

    • Find a tool that makes it easier to collaborate on building skill set descriptions
    • Find a tool that makes it easier to update the skill set map
    • Have some kind of e-mail list of announcements (Contact Itangalo to get on the list.)
  • Decide where we want the project to go from here (see "Future" below)

  • Find ways of giving the skill sets richer descriptions

  • Discuss and improve the descriptions of target groups for the project

  • Validate skillsets on an on-going basis?

    • Invite feedback from members of the community
    • Conduct interview or in some other way strengthen the validity of the skill sets

Tasks you can do

  • Find a good tool for collaborating on skill set descriptions
  • Find a tool that makes it easy to manage and change the skill set map
  • Pick a skill set and start making a richer description in a way you find suitable

Started work

  • Sketching related skill sets not depending on Drupal.
  • Sketching Roles relevant for Drupal projects
  • Mapping skill sets to roles


  • Sketching Drupal-related skill sets
  • Ask for feedback on the Drupal-related skill sets (round one)
  • Analyzing feedback and updating skill sets


Development of curriculum

  • Decide where we go from here (and if we should go in multiple directions):
    • If we give it priority: identifying the questions we need to answer in order to continue with the roles discussions, and get the roles discussion going
    • If we give it priority: find out what prerequisite skills we have for the Drupal related skill sets, and how we should describe those in relation to each other
    • If we give it priority: map out skill sets not directly related to Drupal, but important for (some) people working with Drupal – the greyed out skill sets

Implementation or applications

  • Decide where we go from here (and if we should go in multiple directions):
    • If we give it priority: find a way to allow people to tag blog posts and other web content with skill sets
    • If we give it priority: find ways for learning initiatives to implement the skill sets
    • If we give it priority: find ways to give the skill sets a more formal status (having some “official” section on d.o? being used in the documentation?)
    • If we give it priority: work on achievements and badges system

Possible concrete tasks

  • analyze feedback, summarizing patterns and sorting into categories
  • pick a skill set and start describing it
  • pick a potential target group for the project, and see how that group would like the project to evolve
  • work on validating the skill sets by discussing them with someone who might use them
  • ...

Integrate with initiatives such as

  • Mentoring- Padawan
  • Drupal Kata
  • DOLI
  • Dojo


Comments on some great stuff

Itangalo's picture

This is great stuff, and I think the community (and Drupal) would benefit greatly if this could become real.
After some discussions at Drupal City Berlin this weekend, I have some ideas and comments I'd like to add to this discussion.

First the daunting ones:

  • My most important comment is probably that the work on both assessments and certifications can wait. None of these are included in this roadmap, but discussed quite extensively in the associated wiki pages (Scenarios, Curriculum example and Towards an open certification system). I think we should keep the focus on describing subject areas/skill sets because (a) they are necessary to build both assessments and certifications; (b) descriptions of subject areas/skill sets can be used for more purposes than assessments and certifications; and not least, (c) mapping out subject areas/skill sets is useful in itself – for example to help Drupal newbies to know where to start learning.
  • 2.2 – Create a team / granular tasks: I'm a bit wary about focusing on interviews and surveys. While I really think that they would be useful and bring solid knowledge to the project, I also suspect that they may slow down the process of building up a description of Drupal skills. I would definately encourage anyone taking that approach, but I also want to welcome anyone who just wants to brainstorm about Drupal skills. If we get a rich list of Drupal skills for different competencies, we could hopefully verify and adjust these afterwards, in discussions with people with a of experience in each field.

Then the more happy comments:

  • 3 – Define roles: This list is great, and I'd like to add two more roles – the marketing role and the community participant role. I think we should consider describing these as "competencies" or "branches of Drupal skills" rather than roles, since you probably need skills from several branches regardless of which role you have in a Drupal project.
  • 4.2 – Scope / create examples of subject areas: I think subject areas would benefit from being described by discrete and concrete achievements. For example, in a "basic site building" subject area, there could be achievements like "creating your first view", "adding fields to user accounts" and the like. Having concrete achievements will make it easier to pursue them (and assess them, for that matter), and I know from the chats in Berlin that there are people interested in combining Drupal achievements with badges. While these achievements would probably change quite often, the subject areas could be much more stable.
  • 5 – Figure out a way to collaborate on areas: In Berlin I started jotting down achievements, following the discussions about badges. The result can be found in the sandbox project Drupal learning curvz. I used the FreeMind software, which is open source and (IMHO) quite useful. I've tried using it with Git in a two-person collaboration, but I haven't yet tried any complex merges. It might be a good tool for collaboration – in any case one we could try and then dismiss.

Looking forward to continue with this project.
//Johan Falk
Check out NodeOne's Drupal Learning Library! 190+ screencasts and exercises, for Drupal introduction, advanced configuration, and coding. Creative Commons license!

Some more comments about where to start

Itangalo's picture

After talking a bit more to Heather, and also with some of the people from Berlin (frega, fubhy and linclark), I want to change my opinion about "achievements".

While achivements may be fun and a pretty good way of describing subject areas, it makes much sense to start with subject areas and go from there. Subject areas gives a good skeleton of skills, to build on. With that in place, it is much easier to define individual achievements (and, for the people burning for badges, add a badge system). The other way around would be much more difficult.

Still looking forward to this very much.
//Johan Falk

heather, are you planning a

idcm's picture

heather, are you planning a Denver BOF similar to the London session to continue this discussion?

I am not sure if I'll be at

heather's picture

I am not sure if I'll be at Denver. All depends if I get a session in or can convince someone to send me ;)

Are you at any camps in the coming future? I am vying to get to DrupalCamp Austin. Would like to do more work on this soon!

BTW - I finally saw your book yesterday! Congratulations :)

You gotta come to Denver!!

idcm's picture

You gotta come to Denver!! DrupalCon won't be the same without you.

I will be in Atlanta and would love to go to Austin as I think I could mooch a room from a friend. But we'll see. Am also pondering Summit - again, all about the budget.

Thanks. I hope you like what you saw :-} I am giving away copies at the Atlanta Summit and Atlanta Camp next weekend - Wiley has been generous providing books.

Can I haz brainstorm?

Itangalo's picture

Re-reading this post, I think it would be quite possible to start sketching on "areas" right away. I realize this is jumping directly to step 6 of the sketched plan, but still think it would work.

Concerning the prior steps:
1) We should definatley get input from stakeholders and interested people – but it makes sense to have something to show too. Not anything completed at all, but inviting someone to "we're brainstorming on Drupal subject areas" would make sense to me.
2) I think the team will be the people joining up. If there needs to be a leader, I'm willing to lead the work on defining/describing Drupal subject areas. While I do think that granular tasks are important, I think we have a few already, and that more will crop up as we move along.
3) The roles seem to be pretty well described already, and if we're lacking anything I think it will become clear when starting to describe subject areas.
4) Yep – describing what we mean by "subject areas" is pretty important, and needs to be done before brainstorming. (But we should also be open for changing this, if another approach seems more reasonable.)
5) I suggest the easiest collaboration form available right now – a wiki page here in the group.

Which brings us to step 6 – defining/describing subject areas!

I'd be happy to start a wiki page about this, and write down a description of what a "subject area" is, and how they could be described.

I know I have a tendency to run off in a direction when I get absorbed in an idea – which is kind of the case here – but I also think there is a point in getting the ball rolling and see where it goes. Unless someone protests, I'll start the proposed wiki page in a day or two. (And, really, it is ok to ask me to hold my horses for a little while.)

//Johan Falk
Check out NodeOne's Drupal Learning Library! 190+ screencasts and exercises, for Drupal introduction, advanced configuration, and coding. Creative Commons license!

I'm not going to be the one

heather's picture

I'm not going to be the one to stand in your way, mister! Keep on goin! :) So glad to get a chance to work with you.

There is a page I started Curriculum example - and it contains summary of your ideas about subject-areas. So maybe you can start hacking on that page? It's linked from all the other pages, so that is handy, you know?

I did get a chance to look at the "Sketches for Drupal learning curves"... and I fear it may be falling foul of the same problem we had last summer... too much detail. We need it "chunkier".

Only local images are allowed.

At the top level you have "first steps" such as "Register on d.o" or "Use Devel" module. The next level of the tree is a set of subsequent "steps".

I think that the subject-domains, or skill-sets, or subject-areas (whatever you want to call them) would be better as top level items. Not to identify at this stage the sequence of learning activities...

Have you reviewed the Definitions document? I'm trying to de-couple the minutae of learning materials and assessable "competencies" from the subject areas. Please check that out, and ask some more questions to help me clarify that?

Because I think we need more of a clear model of how chunky these subject areas/skill sets are.

Think DUPLO and not LEGO, and we'll be able to manage it better.

Rock on!

Itangalo's picture

Sweet, then I'll be adding to and modifying the existing wiki page! (It is already linked and everything, you know!)

And yes – the "sketches for Drupal learning curves" are definately too detailed. It was built with the "achievements" layer in mind, but that is too zoomed in for this stage. New ones will be provided.

While at it – I realized I forgot an important point when posting the previous comment: When we are starting to get a somewhat coherent image of subject areas, I think it is very important to find a number of skilled persons to check it against. (There could of course be skilled people involved in describing the areas to start with, but there are probably still be good reasons to double check with "external" folks.)


//Johan Falk

Edit: An better image than the "learning curves" can be found here. It will be provided with more comments and stuff tomorrow.

the open source learning

idcm's picture

the open source learning academy link ( was just posted on but interestingly, the "open source" academy courses are not free.

Yep, I'm aware that NJIT were

heather's picture

Yep, I'm aware that NJIT were offering a certificate and credit for learning Drupal. I think "open source learning" means, learning about open source? Rather than a specification about being open source?

Also - I'm curious - how do you feel their work relates to our roadmap here? Maybe add it to the references?

I guess I was just trying to

idcm's picture

I guess I was just trying to confirm that what they are doing is not what we are doing. The "open source" thru me a little. I have been trying to keep up with the posts on this open source learning initiative and want to confirm whether it is about open source learning opportunities (free learning) versus commercial training on open source. I know it is about creating a framework of what needs to be learned but with Dojo and the like listed at the end of the page made me think it was also about "free" open sources learning opportunities. Sorry if I have missed the answer to this in the posts.

Oh yeah. Really good point,

heather's picture

Oh yeah. Really good point, Cindy! We didn't discuss licensing yet. I am not aware of any suitable models.

My intention has always been to find a way to collaborate while still making viable commercial opportunities. I pictured the framework or structure is collaborative and open sourced. Like, as in free beer and freedom.

(however-- I never yet found out what other's intentions are!!)

The thing I'd like to see is that derivate works which reference the framework don't have to be open sourced. So someone could make commercial screencasts and tag them with related curriculum areas- but they don't have to release the source video. So we can make ways for people to develop opportunities and a market around the framework. I can see many places for training, assessment, publishing, etc. And I know there are many able bodies for this too ;)

There are excellent free resources out there too- and I think Johan's work is a great example. He's developed a great book out of his work. I'd like to see more of that.

I just don't know if there is any equivalent model for licensing.

I guess it's a good time to ask what everyone else was thinking?

Let's see how far we get anyway ;)

But thanks for bringing this up!

Ah ... so like before. My

idcm's picture

Ah ... so like before. My light bulb is burning brighter. thanks.

@heather -- IANAL, but

fending's picture

@heather -- IANAL, but modified BSD license would seem to work nicely for the commercialization you referenced. The only issue I see with GPL throughout instead is that somebody who purchased a training video could, ostensibly, redistribute what they bought because as a derivative work the seller didn't "own it" to begin with anyway. (Remember the IANAL bit? :) )

NJIT was inspired by the open curriculum discussions

gusaus's picture

I remember talking to these folks in the open curriculum discussions we were having last year. Apparently they liked the Drupal Open Learning Initiative we had put together so much that they decided to call it their own without letting us know. Sort of an aside from this discussion, but checking that link was surprising to say the least.

Gus Austin

Hey guys, Right now I'm just

chrisshattuck's picture

Hey guys,

Right now I'm just perusing the material here, after many months of putting it off. So far I love the ideas, and really appreciate the work you're putting into this. Thank you!


Chris Shattuck
Learn Drupal with over 1700 Drupal video tutorials

Curriculum and Training

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