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MIT Abandons Kuali Open-Source Software Project

MIT is pulling out of a major university-led effort to produce freely available open-source student-administration software, according to an announcement posted on its Web site. It’s the second university to defect from the project since February, when Florida State University also abandoned the effort because of budget cuts.

MIT signed on in 2007 as a partner in the venture, one of several higher-education software collaborations that fall under the umbrella of the nonprofit Kuali Foundation. As a partner institution, it committed to investing between $150,000 and $500,000 per year in the project to develop software for managing student admission, registration, and other tasks, according to the Kuali Web site.

Indiana University, a Kuali community founder, plans to expand its involvement to fill the void left by MIT in the student project, according to a press release.

In a statement e-mailed to Wired Campus, MIT didn’t directly say why it pulled out.

“Like other institutions, MIT must make difficult choices about allocation of its resources,” said Christine Fitzgerald, manager of communications for information services and technology. “We will focus on evolving our student systems by adding critical business functionality, enhancing the user experience for faculty, students and staff, and stabilizing the technical infrastructure.”

MIT will remain a member of the Kuali Foundation and continue to participate in one of its other projects, Kuali Coeus, which focuses on research-administration software.

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