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Your first step when getting started as a developer should be to look through our Developer Manual (download a pdf here: This book will give you all the information you need to get started as an OpenMRS developer in an easy to read and concise format. 
Once you've read through the book, here's a quick summary of things you can do to get started!

  1. If you don't have one, create an OpenMRS ID, which you can use to contribute to this Wiki, manage issues in JIRA, and more.
  2. To access the Wiki and JIRA, you can create a case at the OpenMRS Helpdesk stating that you'd like to contribute and would like access. 
  3. If you haven't already, create an account at
  4. Join the discussions at OpenMRS Talk. Be sure to add your GitHub username to your settings in Talk. Then introduce yourself to the community. You can learn more about how to use Talk by reading this introduction.
  5. Follow the Step-by-Step Installation for Developers and How-To Setup And Use Your IDE. The Developer's Manual also has a helpful chapter on Setting Up Your Development Environment.
  6. Watch some OpenMRS development screencasts on YouTube.
  7. Try out the OpenMRS SDK.
  8. Create your first OpenMRS module. The Developer's Manual features a chapter on how to create a Hello World Module.
  9. Find some introductory issues (also shown below) that have the "Ready for Work" status to work on, and assign them to yourself by clicking the Claim Issue button. (Ask for clarification on the issue if needed.) If you find yourself taking long (days) without making any progress, feel free to un-assign yourself from the issue and choose another.
  10. Meet some other developers through real-time chat in Telegram ( or IRC (
  11. Learn about OpenMRS Developer Stages, earn the /dev/null badge and, when you're ready, take the quiz to earn /dev/1.
  12. Try as much as you can to include unit tests for your changes. Remember to also do an "mvn clean install" to ensure that all existing unit tests and yours pass. Then create a pull request. If your changes affect the user interface, please run the web application to see the effects, and then attach a screenshot, before you commit. Remember to have a look at the Pull Request Tips.
  13. Log your time spent on that issue and click "Request Code Review" and a core developer will get you some feedback in short order
  14. Find another issue or choose a larger project to work on. See Unassigned Projects.
  15. If you join a sprint or choose to share your module (we hope you do), then you'll want to read about Using Git.
  16. When you no longer want to work on an issue that you have already assigned to yourself, please remember to un-assign yourself from it such that others can take it up. If you have any findings that you feel would be useful to whoever takes it up, please feel free to add a comment.
  17. Do some code reviews. Here is the list of pull requests that are waiting for review. Reviewing other people's work is one of the great ways of learning about OpenMRS. You can even review code for some one more experienced than you. Reviews can be as simple as checking to ensure that commits are squashed into one, adherence to our code conventions, spelling mistakes, missing javadoc comments, and more. More details about code reviews can be found at this wiki page.





New Developers

Please record your experiences (good or bad) on this child page.  We are always trying to find ways to improve where we can do better and reinforce things we are doing well, so getting input from your perspective is very helpful & appreciated.

Community Priorities

Here is a list of tickets prioritized by the community from the Community Priority Kanban:

Key Summary T Created Updated Due Assignee Reporter P Status Resolution
TRUNK-344 PersonName.getFullName() should use the configured nameLayout New Feature 2010-03-08 2017-03-20 Unassigned Darius Jazayeri Should Ready for Work Unresolved
RESTWS-644 ObsResource needs to support time zones and more date formats New Feature 2017-02-03 2017-02-28 Unassigned Wyclif Luyima Must Ready for Work Unresolved
IDGEN-42 web-services for idgen New Feature 2015-03-04 2017-02-23 Unassigned Shruthi Dipali Should Ready for Work Unresolved
RA-982 Support Coded Person Attributes in Reference Application Registration Story 2015-11-21 2017-03-08 Unassigned James Arbaugh Should Waiting for Dev Unresolved
RA-1001 Update all modules that use Transifex to support all languages we support Improvement 2016-01-28 2016-11-24 Unassigned Mark Goodrich TBD Waiting for Dev Unresolved
TRUNK-4821 Fix broken CI plan for OpenMRS on MariaDB Task 2016-02-01 2016-11-21 Unassigned Wyclif Luyima TBD Ready for Work Unresolved
TRUNK-4822 Fix broken CI plan for MariaDB Docker test Task 2016-02-01 2016-11-21 Unassigned Wyclif Luyima TBD Ready for Work Unresolved
STAND-85 Drastically improve documentation about building the Standalone Bug 2016-02-18 2016-11-21 Unassigned Darius Jazayeri TBD Ready for Work Unresolved
RESTWS-641 Support mime-type when posting complex obs Bug 2017-01-30 2017-04-17 Unassigned Rafal Korytkowski Should Ready for Work Unresolved
RESTWS-645 Default representation of the module resource should include version New Feature 2017-02-06 2017-03-28 Unassigned Darius Jazayeri TBD Ready for Work Unresolved
AM-185 Patients are given appointment slots with different providers in the overlapping time intervals Bug 2017-03-03 2017-03-03 Unassigned Shireesha Bongarala Should Ready for Work Unresolved
TRUNK-5093 AbstractHandler allows blind rewriting of existing complex obs file Bug 2017-03-06 2017-04-19 Unassigned Dimitri Renault Should Ready for Work Unresolved
RESTWS-655 Program Enrollment Resource should not return voided patient programs Bug 2017-03-30 2017-04-24 Unassigned Mark Goodrich Must Ready for Work Unresolved

Introductory Issues

The following issues are both "introductory" and also "curated", meaning that they have thorough descriptions of how to approach solving them:


If you aren't able to find an appropriate issue in the list above, you can take a look at the complete list of "introductory" issues, (not necessarily "curated").

Beyond Introductory Issues

You could also do code reviews for pull requests.

If you try out the sprint, code reviews, and still find it boring, please feel free to ask us on IRC or the developers mailing list.

Current Sprint Issues

We may have an ongoing Development Sprints. Feel free to ask on IRC or the development category of OpenMRS Talk.

Other Useful Resources


Code Review

Code Review Checklist

Simple Secure Coding Checklist

Newbie Guide to OpenMRS Development - by Sri Maurya Kummamuru

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  1. It would actually be good to have the green message directing them to the current sprint


    1. I fully agree with Wyclif. What do others think?

      1. How about both – i.e., refactor the tip to direct people to the current sprint or, if they don't have luck there, then to the community development swim lane?