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What is an LMS?

07 / 02 / 2018 Abhishek Das

If you search LMS on Google, you would probably end up getting over 60 million results. It is the newest trend in the corporate world and a possible solution for providing education to all. While you would get some information from your Google search, most of it would be from a specific point of view and over half of it would be marketing an existing incomplete product. So we decided to write a blog that should answer all your questions once and for all.

What is an LMS?

LMS is an abbreviation for Learning Management System. If one were to describe an LMS in a single sentence then “a Learning Management System (LMS) is a tool for managing online learning”. But in recent years the description and capabilities of an LMS has evolved not only to support classroom teaching, but for creating online courses, corporate training and making distant learning easier too.

So now, keeping the newer trends in mind a proper definition of an LMS would be -

“An LMS is a web-based software application that enables organisations to create online reading material, administer courses, document and track learning, assess learning and provide training for the said courses and reporting. Through an LMS; higher education institutions and corporations alike, aim to enhance learning and identifying training gaps”

Who needs an LMS?

One would be wrong to assume that an LMS is only used by higher educational institutions. Although the first LMS was built for educational institutions, this tool has found its way into the corporate world as well. To negate the increasing training costs and to reach out to more students across the internet, below are the three types of organisations that would definitely need LMS features -.

  • Higher education institutions
  • Online and distance-learning platforms
  • Mid to large scale corporates

The scope of corporate LMS software is immense and with the rising training and monitoring costs it is time that more and more corporates would start adopting an LMS. The LMS market is ripe with competition. There are a number of open source LMS’s but the need of the hour is an LMS platform with an engaging User Interface. To match the changing user demands, the LMS should be able to evolve which is possible if the LMS platform is cloud-based.

Benefits of an LMS

Well, the reasons differ based on the kind of organisation you are. So we are going to look at the benefits of an LMS from the perspective of the three aforementioned organisations.

If you are a higher education institute, then the benefits of an LMS for you are -

  • It provides a platform for teachers to engage with students by incorporating blended learning
  • Teachers can share any form of document be it a reading material or YouTube videos.
  • Higher education institute can record lectures and share it with students for improved learning
  • When working in tandem with Student Information System, it can help administrators track document and monitor learning in students individually
  • Teachers can assess students using quizzes, assignments
  • Students can access the LMS through their mobile devices
  • It’s a one stop database for all programs and course related information
  • Its available 24x7 and can be accessed by students from their homes too
  • You can map the courses and lessons with outcomes to make your higher education accreditation compliant and implement Outcome-Based Education properly

If you are an online or a distance learning platform, you need an LMS because -

  • It helps you create course content and manage courses
  • It helps you reach out to students in different geographies
  • You can record lectures for your students
  • Your students can interact with you in real time just like a Facebook wall
  • It helps you assess their learnings better
  • It can integrate with a payment gateway to make the whole process seamless

If you are a corporate, then you need an LMS platform because-

  • It will reduce training and onboarding costs significantly
  • You can create role specific courses and training material for your employees
  • You can monitor employee learning progress and assign training programs
  • It will help you assess the requisite skills in your employees
  • Your organisation can meet regulatory compliance

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