Frequently Asked Questions

  1. NTER Transition: What This Means to Me

    The NTER project was designed as a low cost tool for providing workforce education and training, with the expectation that the open source community would assume its operation. The Department of Energy (DOE) is exploring the transition of stewardship of NTER through its Request for Information (RFI). DOE asks RFI respondents to provide information about capabilities required to take over NTER operations and the impact such a transition would have on the NTER community.

  2. What is meant by "transition of NTER stewardship"?

    This statement signals that DOE will no longer provide funding or hands-on resources to support NTER.

  3. How will this impact my organization's NTER functionality?

    The discontinuance of all NTER core services will shut down all courses on nterlearning.org. NTER nodes that are not connected to nterlearning.org may remain operational, but users will lose the ability to search for courses across other NTER nodes (organizations) unless another entity assumes NTER stewardship.

  4. Will NTER functionality be fully restored by the open source community?

    NTER's core services functionality could be reinstated by another entity.  To keep up to date on NTER functionality, please visit the NTER Open Source Community at ntercom.org.

  5. What does an NTER node comprise?

    The two main components of an NTER node are a Content Management System (CMS), referred to as a portal and a Learning Management System (LMS). The CMS is using LifeRay. The LMS is customized ILIAS. The CMS allows the federation of courses from multiple Learning Management Systems.

  6. Where does NTER course content come from?

    NTER is a front end to multiple learning management systems. Courses are authored and published on learning management systems and dynamically fed to NTER for delivery. Currently, two learning management systems are supported: Ilias-based NWTP and Moodle.  Click here for a current listing of courses on NTER.

  7. There appear to be a few different nodes for the same on-line platform (NTER/NWTP): nterlearning.org, nwtp.sri.com, weatherization-nwtp.nterlearning.org. Which node is used for which functions?
    • nterlearning.org is the general public instance of NTER.  This houses a wide variety of courses developed by a broad audience. Courses are focused on energy and manufacturing or basic science and matth skills.
    • nwtp.sri.com is what we call the development server, or devserver. This is the site users will use to develop and manage course content. Content is moved from this server to the nterlearning.org production server.
  8. How do users access courses on another LMS systems?

    NTER has implemented a sophisticated single-sign-on mechanism. Users create accounts on NTER and their login is passed to LMS systems behind the scenes so that the users' access to courses is seamless.

  9. How do I acquire an authoring account so that I can develop content and tests?

    Send an e-mail with your name, e-mail address and training organization or affiliation to support@nterlearning.org.  You will receive an email with instructions on how to login and access the nwtp.sri.com development server along with resources to get you started on creating content or tests.

  10. Are the authoring tools available to any instructor?

    Yes, NTER provides access to SCORM authoring tools and html authoring tools. NTER also offers authoring tools for interactive 3D scenarios.  Download instruction manuals oAuthoringAdvanced AuthoringTest Creation, and 3D Authoring.  Use the Contact Us form to request an authoring account.

  11. Is there a cost for using the authoring tools?

    No. All open-source tools developed under the NTER program are free to use.

  12. What platforms do the authoring tools run on?

    Windows and Linux

  13. Do I need to install any software to use the authoring tools?

    No. These tools run in commonly available browsers.  It is recommended that authors note on their front course page the browser that supports their course materials best.

  14. What technology is used for 3D simulation?

    3D scenarios are developed using Kuda tools for WebGL technology. Running these scenarios requires no plugin; students can access 3D scenarios from their browser.

  15. WebGL is not supported by Internet Explorer yet. How does a student use IE for running 3D scenarios?

    Students can add Google Chrome frame to enable IE for WebGL. If you have difficulties setting up WebGL, please visit our Kuda website at: http://code.google.com/p/kuda/wiki/TroubleshootWebGL

  16. Who is using the NTER platform?

    NTER is used by more than 128 organizations in various workforce technologies.

  17. Can I incorporate images and videos into a test?

    Yes!  When drafting questions, certain question types (e.g., multiple choice) you can upload images in the "Answers" section of the test item creation forms. Simply browse for images and upload. Download our Creating a Test Participant Guide for more information on developing and delivering on-line tests.

  18. Once I've delivered a test, what data are available to me for test analysis?

    Data available for test analysis are: rank of participant, test results in points and percentages, time spent working on the test, which questions users got right and wrong, and which answers users selected for each question. This data can be viewed directly on the platform or exported as a spreadsheet.

  19. Are the responses to the knowledge checks available for analyzing?

    No.  The knowledge checks are intended for students' personal prompts and aren't collected as part of the course data. This makes it all the more important to build-in learning moments when writing the messages to be displayed when students answer questions correctly, AND incorrectly. 

  20. If I include a knowledge check within a course, is that question available in my Question Pool?

    No.  Currently the questions built directly into the course content (knowledge checks) are not tied to the Question Pool functionality. This is by design.

  21. Once I've delivered a test, what data are available to me for test analysis?

    Rank of participant, test results in points and percentage, time spent working on the test, which questions they got right and wrong, and which answers they selected for each question. All this can be viewed directly on the platform or exported as a spreadsheet.

  22. Can I access and edit the course content material for my own course(s)?

    Yes. You will need to review the Common Core License details for the course.

  23. As a content creator, is there a library of "assets" I can access?

    Yes. Please see the "Creating a Media Pool" section of the Authoring Course Participant Guide.