This is a detailed comparison between NEO and Otus, taking into consideration the features, functionality, and cost of each platform.
NEO is a world-class, award-winning learning management system (LMS) for schools and universities. NEO helps schools manage all classroom activities, such as creating and delivering educational content, assessing students, tracking their results, and promoting communication and collaboration between students and teachers/faculty.
Otus is a Student Performance Platform that is designed specifically for K-12 school systems. It offers three products for this sector Learning Management, Assessment Management, and Data Management.
NEO has an intuitive, responsive design, that looks sharp and automatically adjusts based on the type of device. The platform offers tile-based dashboards for teachers, students, administrators and parents, a graphical resources catalog, as well as a users catalog. NEO also has a unique “activity display” feature that indicates the level of activity within classes and groups using a pulsing indicator on their tiles together with real-time widgets that scroll through the latest activities.
Otus has a simple interface with a limited number of colors that can be changed by administrators. The design isn’t fully responsive since there are areas where the platform doesn’t adjust automatically based on the type of device. Otus doesn’t provide graphical dashboards and a course catalog. It is also missing a graphical resources catalog and uses a system of folders to organize files and other resources for each class.
In Otus, classes represent a group of students and teachers that can assign different lessons for each class. Lessons are the areas where the learning content is located. In the Lesson area, teachers can see the list of assigned and draft lessons but there is no tile-based view available.
The classes in Otus are displayed on the homepage in a simplistic tile-based view without the possibility to change the view. Administrators can organize classes into schools.
In NEO, it’s simple to navigate to the main areas of the site and easily perform tasks without having to leave the main dashboard. For example, to add a new group or class, the user can simply go to the left menu and click on the “Add” button. In Otus, you have to visit the specific area to add lessons and assign groups to users. For example, to assign a group, first you have to visit the Classes area, where the students are listed. There you have to select the class and then click the “Assign Groups” option to select/create a group and add the students using a people picker.
The NEO class layout is tile-based and users have the choice to switch to a row view. Class tiles show important information such as the number of students, a link to the class calendar, news area, and assignments to grade. Each lesson in a class shows the number of sections in the lessons, the badges and points awarded, and certificates associated with the lesson. Students can also easily see progress icons for each class and lesson, making it easy to know which lessons have to be started or resumed and which ones are completed.
In Otus, the Lesson area looks a bit outdated and the listing only shows limited information about the lessons, such as the title, the class where the lessons were assigned and the due date. When teachers visit a lesson, they can see the list of students, their progress and status.
When adding activities to lessons, teachers can choose from three options: directions, resources from the Bookshelf, and new resources. Teachers have to create content pages and assignments separately then they can add items to lessons. There is no drag and drop option, as a result, organizing materials can take more time.
NEO is more accessible to users, offering 40+ languages, including Right to Left languages. Otus provides only 5 languages. NEO has mobile apps for iOS and Android. There is also an option to customize apps for schools that want to have their own branded mobile apps. Otus has native apps for iOS and Android and no branded apps. The mobile apps offer just a limited set of functionalities.
Ease of use
NEO is very intuitive and easy to use. In addition, it includes an online help center with videos, getting started guides, and searchable help content. NEO also has a rapid response support forum where staff members typically respond to questions within 15-30 minutes during business hours 24/5.
Otus is easy to use and understand, includes an online help center, getting started guides for admins, teachers and students, and technical support.
NEO offers all the essential tools schools need to manage classroom activities, assess students, track progress, and promote collaboration between students, teachers, and parents. Many features can be enabled or disabled to suit young children through college students.
Otus is marketed to K-12 schools and its features are primarily geared towards this sector. For example, NEO allows all institutions to organize schools into districts through its Networking feature and create different university departments through the Organizations feature. In Otus, schools can be organized into a district, but not into university departments. NEO also has more options for content authoring, such as learning paths, and features that help teachers personalize classes such as automation, gamification, and adaptive learning. In addition, NEO includes more collaboration tools such as chats, teams, and wikis.
NEO provides different types of classes to suit all teaching styles, whether it’s instructor-led, blended, self-paced, or micro learning. Using the NEO authoring tool, teachers can record audio or video directly from their browser. Teachers can create learning paths to inspire students to achieve learning goals. Each goal in a path can represent a class or a certificate and students can be rewarded with points and badges as they complete goals.
Otus provides independent lessons that can be used to teach self-paced classes. The content authoring tool in Otus is easy to use but it has quite limited options and all the content pages have to be created via the Bookshelf area. The platform does not provide a learning paths feature.
NEO provides 15 assignment types, including essay, survey, discussion, team, debate, Dropbox, SCORM, attendance. Teachers can also create a quiz assignment with 7 question types, including arithmetic questions.
Otus offers 4 main types of assignments: simple, advanced, rubric, and bubblesheet. The assessments can be built using more than 65 item types and pre-built items.
NEO provides support for competency-based learning that allows teachers to track how well students are understanding the taught concepts based on their mastery of skills or subjects. Measuring student performance is easy and teachers can get instant insights using extensive analytics, built-in reports, and custom reports.
Otus has a feature that allows teachers to use standards-based teaching and they can run reports to evaluate the mastery level but there is no option to trigger actions when students achieve certain mastery levels or drop below a threshold for a competency.
Otus has built-in reports on attendance, recognitions, participation, blog, assessments, and standards but offers less options compared to NEO and it’s missing the Ad-hoc reporting feature. Otus has an option to add 3rd party analytics resources.
Communication and collaboration
NEO offers a complete set of communication and collaboration tools for all users such as built-in messaging with bidirectional email integration, chat, social networking, blogs, forums, groups, and teams.
Otus provides a smaller set of features and there are no teams, chats, wikis, social networking, and class forums.
Personalization and engagement
NEO helps teachers save time through automation, which allows them to set up actions that should be performed when students complete tasks. Rules can be added in many areas of the platform such as classes, learning paths, groups, accounts, and mastery. Adaptive learning allows you to personalize what content students see in classes and learning paths based on rule actions.
Otus doesn’t provide an automation feature and teachers can’t add actions that are triggered based on certain events and user behaviour. The platform only has a setting that requires students to take the modules in a lesson one by one. It also has a copy and share function for lessons that can help teachers save time on teaching activities.
NEO has a powerful gamification feature, through which students earn points and badges, and they can also see a leaderboard with their results and ranking.
Otus does not have a gamification feature and teachers can’t create and award badges based on student actions. Instead, they can assign recognitions to groups and individual students. There are two types of recognitions, district and teacher recognition which can be positive or negative.
In NEO, schools can customize many aspects of the platform including its color scheme, fonts, terminology, and more. They can also create a visitor portal with their own logo, portal images, panels, carousel, custom HTML, and more.
Otus has a standard interface with a set of colors that can be changed by the site administrator.
Here is a list of features included in NEO that Otus does not support:
- 100% mobile responsive design
- Customizable visitor portal
- Support for more than 40 languages
- Customizable terminology
- Automatic language translation of messages and forum posts
- Branded mobile apps
- Activity display
- Content sync
- Learning paths
- Adaptive learning
- Micro learning
- Drip content
- Class ratings and reviews
- Prerequisite certificates
- Graphical badge gallery
- Offline mode
Assessment and analytics
- Personalized assignments
- Curriculum coverage analysis
- Scheduled reports
- Custom reports
- Debate, team, offline, SCORM and attendance assignments
- Comprehensive set of built-in reports
- Custom report widgets
- Public profiles
- Integration with your own email server
- Integration with 1,500+ apps via Zapier
- MS Immersive Reader
- MS OneNote
- Safe Exam Browser
- PayU Latam
- Google Meet
- MS Teams
- Built-in student help desk
- Monitor and teaching assistant account types
- Policy documents
- SEO features
- Purchase orders
NEO has a Free plan with a comprehensive set of essential LMS features and a Premium plan for schools that need more powerful functionality. There are no setup fees, cancellation fees, storage fees, bandwidth fees, support fees, or other hidden costs.
Otus has a free plan for teachers, and a paid plan for schools and districts. There is no free version that includes administration features which are generally required when using an LMS for an entire school. Based on the number of student accounts, an Otus paid plan is about $8 to $10 per student per year, with a $600 setup fee, and $1000 training cost for the staff.
This was a comparison of the most important feature differences between NEO and Otus.
NEO is a more attractive and easier to use LMS than Otus. NEO is easier to customize and offers more features at a better value, which makes NEO more suitable for both K-12 and Higher Ed institutions.
If you require additional information on NEO, please contact us.
This comparison paper was written in August 2020 based on publicly available documentation on both vendors' sites. It was prepared as a guide and is not intended to be exhaustive. The comparison information is for guidance only and does not constitute any contractual representation, warranty or obligation on our part. Liability for errors, omissions or consequential loss is expressly disclaimed.
Since pricing and features can change rapidly, we do not represent that this information is up-to-date, and we encourage you to get the latest information directly from the vendor's web site. If you find any information in this comparison guide to be inaccurate, please contact us with details and we will correct the information within 72hrs.