In an exchange of authentication and authorization data, an identity provider securely asserts the identity and access rights of a set of users. Your implementation of the Open edX platform is the service provider that allows the users access on the basis of credentials sent by an identity provider.
For example, your Open edX installation hosts the courses of three different institutions. When you configure the open edX installation to be a service provider, and configure each of the three institutions to be identity providers, you permit learners who have valid user credentials at any of those institutions to access the Open edX site.
You can enable third party authentication between your Open edX system and identity providers that use the SAML 2.0 (Security Assertion Markup Language, version 2.0) standard for authentication. For more information, see Integrating with a SAML Identity Provider.
At an Open edX installation, you begin by enabling the third party authentication feature for your installation.
At an institution that has a partner membership with edX, you can enable third party authentication between your institutional authentication systems and the edX Edge site.
If you are using edX as an LTI tool provider to a external learning management system or application, you can set up an authentication workflow between your Open edX system and the system that is the LTI tool consumer. For more information, see Options for LTI Authentication and User Provisioning and Configuring Open edX User Authentication for LTI.