Convert a Gitbook into an Edx course. It generates a file ready to be imported in Edx Studio.
Last updated 5 years ago by vzaccaria .
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$ cnpm install gitbook2edx 
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gitbook2edx NPM version

Convert a Gitbook into an Edx course. It generates a file ready to be imported in Edx Studio.

Install globally with npm:

npm i -g gitbook2edx

General help

gitbook2edx gen DIR [ -c CONFIG ]
gitbook2edx json DIR [ -c CONFIG ]
gitbook2edx info DIR [ -c CONFIG ]
gitbook2edx -h | --help

Options: -h, --help Just this help -c, --config CONFIG Filename of the YAML configuration of the course

Arguments: DIR Root directory of the Gitbook to be converted

Commands: gen Generate the course.tar.gz file for the gitbook in DIR.

Detailed help

Warning: This command assumes a Gitbook 1.5.0 (or lower) format for your book. I dont plan to follow strictly Gitbook releses, especially concerning exercise authoring.

This command generates an archive with all the XML/HTML files needed to bootstrap an Edx course based on a Gitbook. The following mappings are used

  • Gitbook section -> Edx Chapter
  • Gitbook subsection -> Edx Sequential (plus one Edx Vertical for the content)

At the moment, only HTML is included in course.xml. In the future we plan to convert also Gitbook exercises.

A part from course.xml, the archive will contain an about folder with the required overview.html and short_description.html. Static data, such as the course image and the js/css assets will be included in the static subfolder.


To generate the course archive (course.tar.gz), the following information is needed:

  • the root directory (DIR) of the Gitbook to be imported
  • the YAML configuration file (CONFIG) for the course. This one specifies the metadata information of the course such as start and end times, course description, teacher's bios. By default, this command looks for a config.yaml file in DIR. You can specify another value through the command line.
  • Optional: one js and one css file to be included as static assets in each vertical.


To generate course.tar.gz for a Gitbook in test/javascript-master (assuming the configuration is test/javascript-master/config.yaml):

gitbook2edx gen test/javascript-master

Configuration file

Here you can find the configuration file config.yaml that shows the mandatory information needed in the config.yaml file:

    name: 'Computer Science'
    number: '80169'

    # The following two get concatenated to obtain the url_name
    year: '2014'
    season: 'spring'

while all the available configuration options for the course are shown here:

    name: 'Computer Science'
    number: '80169'

    # The following two get concatenated to obtain the url_name
    year: '2014'
    season: 'spring'

    # Important dates (use JS's native Date parsing)
    start: 'March 1, 2015 8:00'
    end: 'June 3, 2015'

    enrollment_start: 'Feb 1, 2015'
    enrollment_end: 'Feb 1, 2015'

    # This is always relative to the 'DIR/_assets' directory
    image: 'course-image.jpg'


    # The following are always relative to the 'DIR/_assets' directory
    # They are included in each vertical.
    js: 'client.js'
    css: 'client.css'

    about: |
        You can use **markdown** here

    prerequisites: |
        You can use **markdown** here


      - name: 'John Doe'
        image: ''
        bio: 'xlkxz xz lxzlk'

      - question: 'Silly question?'
        answer: 'yes'

    150 characters of course description.  

How to write exercises for the book.

A programming exercise is defined directly in markdown by writing 4 simple parts between two ---- headers:

  • Exercise Message/Goals (in markdown/text)
  • Initial code to show to the user, providing a starting point
  • Solution code, being a correct solution to the exercise
  • Validation code that tests the correctness of the user's input



This is an octave exercise

``` octave
a = 2034547;
b = 1.567;
c = 6758.768;
d = 45084;
x =

``` octave
var a = 2034547;
var b = 1.567;
var c = 6758.768;
var d = 45084;

var x = ((a + b) / c) * d;

``` octave
assert(x == (((a + b) / c) * d));



For quizzes the parts change a bit:

  • Exercise Message/Goals (in markdown/text)
  • All options allowed in the quiz (on separate lines)
  • All options associated with the solution
  • Feedback when the user fails to answer



What is the value of variable `x`

``` quiz

``` quiz

``` quiz
`x` is the result of 3%2!


  • Vittorio Zaccaria


Copyright (c) 2016 Vittorio Zaccaria Released under the license

This file was generated by verb-cli on January 18, 2016.

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