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Write Code. Save Lives.


OpenMRS participated in its 5th year as a mentoring organization for Google Summer of Code™ in 2011. We enjoyed participating in this great program in the last 4 years and were even more excited about the projects and mentors we had available this year. Coding for OpenMRS is a great way to practice your coding skills and, at the same time, help benefit people in developing countries who are on the front lines of the battle against HIV/AIDS, TB, and Malaria.

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Accepted Students and Mentors


  1. If you don't have one yet, get an OpenMRS ID and create your user profile page. Upload an avatar photo. Make sure you are subscribed to the developer mailing list.
  2. If you haven't read it yet, read the GSoC Student Guide.
  3. Contact your mentor immediately and create a communication plan for now through the time of final evaluations. You should communicate once each week, if not more frequently. Determine the best way to communicate (e-mail, IRC, IM, Skype, telephone, etc.). Post the communication plan in your personal space on the OpenMRS wiki.
  4. Get OpenMRS installed and running. Read Developer Guide, Getting Started as a Developer, and ask others in the community if you have questions. If you ask questions the smart way, you'll get better responses.
  5. Get a development environment installed and running.
  6. Review our Conventions page. If you have quesitons about anything you read, contact your mentor or anyone the community.
  7. Set up a blog for GSoC. Send the URL to Michael Downey. If you don't have a blog yet, you can create one for free at or
  8. Browse the current OpenMRS code specific to your project. Browse other GSoC organizations and the pages they have for their students. We want to be the best!
  9. Review the requirements for your project together with your mentor and agree on the final list of requirements with your mentor.
  10. Submit a formal written proposal and project timeline to your mentor. Make sure your mentor agrees with both. Post them in your personal space on the OpenMRS wiki.


  • Become familiar with OpenMRS and your project before the start date.
  • Complete a short "progress report" each week to help stay on schedule.
  • Commit early. Commit often. This is an important value in our open source community - read why.
  • Join the interns mailing list. (We'll help you with this.)
  • You are now part of our developer community. We want you to feel like part of the team, so we hope you will:
    • Have technical discussions on IRC or on the developers mailing list.
    • Ask questions (the smart way) if you get stuck.
    • Participate in our Developers Forum (Inactive) via phone or Skype.
    • Give one or more project presentations during those weekly meetings so we can see the cool stuff you're making.



1st Presentation

2nd Presentation


9 June

28 July


23 June

11 August


14 July

25 August

Tips for applicants and accepted students


  1. Join our developers mailing list. Read its archive from recent weeks to learn about what's been going on lately in our developer community.
  2. To start, install OpenMRS (just like a user would) and learn a bit about how it works. If you have problems, write the developers mailing list and we'll help you work through them.
  3. Want to get more involved? Set up your development environment and fix some simple bugs listed on our Introductory Tickets list. Read Getting Started as a Developer for details on how to do this.
  4. Join our Developers Forum (Inactive) every Thursday to learn about the latest activities & work happening in our community. You can participate by telephone, Skype, or even just on IRC.
  5. Interact with our community. Continue to ask smart questions (what?) on our mailing list or hang out on IRC to ask and answer questions about being an OpenMRS developer, or about the potential projects listed above.


Helpful Community Resources

  • If possible, join the Developers Forum (Inactive) every Thursday. You can participate by telephone, Skype, or even just on IRC. The 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month will be dedicated to Summer of Code, so make every effort to attend to listen to your fellow students' presentations (see the next section for details).
  • We use JIRA as a tool for issue tracking and project management.
  • Tips for using e-mail:
    • If you have a highly specific question, contact your mentor.
    • Technical discussions, ideas, and requests for feedback should be sent to the entire community on the developers mailing list.
    • The Interns mailing list is for accepted students to discuss SoC administrative issues. This list should not be used for technical discussions.
  • IRC discussions in the #OpenMRS channel of freenode are always fun! Useful for shorter discussions or for large group discussions
  • Skype or telephone — sometimes a short discussion can get ideas across much more efficiently
  • Google Docs — an excellent tool for sharing and collaborating in real time on documents or spreadsheets
  • Use the OpenMRS wiki often:
    • Be sure to make a user profile page.
    • Every project should have a OpenMRS wiki page where you document your project, progress, technical details, show mock ups, etc.
  • Scheduling tools:
    • — to clarify/coordinate times around the world
    • — to coordinate meeting times for larger groups


  1. Who are you? What are you studying?
  2. Please provide the URL to your OpenMRS ID personal profile page. (If you don't have one yet, please create one.)
  3. Why are you the right person for this task?
  4. Do you have any other commitments we should know about?
  5. List your Java experience.
  6. List your web interface experience.
  7. List any previous experience working with open source projects. (This experience is not a requirement.)
  8. Please provide links to websites created by you and/or source code examples.
  9. Do you have experience with Spring/Hibernate/DWR/HL7/Tomcat/MySQL/AOP? (Experience with any/all is not a requirement.)
  10. What is your preferred method of contact and how should we reach you with it? (phone, email, Skype, IRC, IM, etc.)
  11. If you have visited our IRC channel, please include your IRC nickname in your application.
  12. If you have added any patches to tickets, please include the ticket numbers.