An Enabler of Mobile Learning

A large number of teachers and learners across the Commonwealth and the globe still struggle in "unconnected" environments – unconnected to grid power or to the internet. Although innovations in open and distance learning continue to make education more accessible, a different approach is needed to extend them support.

Aptus is a mobile server with its own WiFi router that can be deployed in areas with no access to grid electricity or data connectivity. Using tablets, smart phones and laptops, users can access several thousand open educational resources of repute and quality, such as Wikipedia for Schools, Simple English Wikipedia and videos from Khan Academy, as well as Moodle 2.7 or the Drupal 7 content management system.

At a cost of as little as USD150, Aptus provides a low-cost, innovative solution to a global challenge.



COL’s initial idea of a "classroom without walls" imagined a situation where a learner in a typically unconnected environment can access a lesson in a learning management system (LMS) and complete an assignment with her/his credentials intact and available to the teacher. Learners would also be able to participate in a socializing process through visiting and commenting on a blog related to the learning materials and courses.

COL developed the original Aptus prototype by repurposing available commercial products to create a new learning concept. It was launched in September 2013 by HE Dr Kamalesh Sharma, then-Secretary General of the Commonwealth following a number of iterations. Since 2013, the design and functionality of Aptus continues to evolve based on research and testing and field trials and highly structured applied research have been conducted in 18 countries.

Collaboration and Deployment

COL has deployed Aptus in a number of countries, in collaboration with partners:

  1. India, Mann Deshi Foundation (2016)
  2. Samoa, National University Samoa (2016)
  3. Pakistan, Qatar Foundation/ROTA (2016)
  4. Fiji, Ministry of Education (2015)
  5. Vanuatu, Ministry of Education (2015)
  6. Kiribati, Ministry of Education (2015)

How can I get one?

To collaborate with COL in testing Aptus, we invite you to contact us.