OHJ-1866 Introduction to Open Source Software

General information

The course covers the key topics of open source development today and allows students to try participation in an OSS project. After the course students know how open source is developed today and know what challenges are met when working with open source.


On the course you can concentrate on topics such as: and build on top of topics such as:

Organisation of the course

There are no lectures!

The course meets once a week for a two-hour class. At first each week covers a topic of the course on which students have gathered information during the week. The students present what they have found out and the topic is discussed together.

A community game is played where students form a developer community and contribute. This together with attendance and contribution to the course content are enough to get two credits from the course.

An important part of the course is about participation and contribution. Open source software development is first practised through the game and then students can move onto existing open source projects. You can freely choose the open source community. The course recommends the Apache Software Foundation mentoring programme or a Demola project on open source community analysis. Those students who concentrate on contributing to an actual open source project in addition to the course content, will be rewarded credit units from the upper part of the spectrum.

Attendance to the course meetings is in part mandatory. There is no requirement to attend every meeting, as students can make contributions to the course content when they choose to. However, the course staff recommends attendance to as many meetings as possible and at least half of them at minimun.

Meeting times

The course meets weekly during periods 3 and 4 on Thursdays 14-16 in TB206. First meeting is on 13.1.2011.


Will be published later.


Student collaboration and created material

The material students create is collected under the course wiki You can access it through your TUT account. All content will be visible to everybody.

A tool for creating mind maps is used on the course to collect the content of the meetings. You can download the tool from Sourceforge: FreeMind.


The course is graded based on the students' contribution during the course. The entire course is taken into account but the contribution to an OSS project is essential. Based on the amount and level of participation and what the contribution has been, students get 2-6 credits from the course. The course is graded pass/fail.


Basic programming skills are required.


You can signup for the course by sending email to Terhi Kilamo (firstname.surname@tut.fi)