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A learning management system (LMS) is an integrated software system. It is a web-based software which allows the users to adapt to a blended form of learning. Blended form of learning has 2 components:
- Traditional form of learning like classroom teaching
- Incorporation of software and e-learning tools
According to this survey, online learning is expected to reach $336.98 billion by 2026, hence making today the best time to review available learning management systems and deciding which is the best for your educational instituiton.
Any LMS system has two elements, one is a server which connects different software and performs different functions and another is user interface(UI). UI is the final application or the web page which is accessible to the users. They can be students, administration staff, employees or others. Keep in mind that the LMS will only allow you to manage and share your training material. You will still need an authoring tool like Eduflow to create the training content. Alternatively, you can choose off-the-shelf courses. There’s a wide variety of courses to choose from.
With an LMS, the learner has to just sit patiently and watch all the videos related to the course. It can also assist you with assessing the performance of the trainees, take quizzes, interact with your peers and make the learning process quick and efficient.
Basically, what an LMS does is, it provides the user a unique way to gather information,learn about the topic and later track the progress. It gives the student enough room to open discussions via video conferencing or forums.
Let’s dive into the top features to look for in LMS that are ideal for an academic environment:
1. Paving a clear learning path for the students
Learning path is a common feature of LMS but here the educators can organise their material for making the learnings clear and straightforward. The schools should choose a path that comes with performance tracking as this feature will let the educator know how far the students have come in their journey and what are the areas where they need more guidance and help.
2. Learnings through discussions and activities
Group learnings are always the best as they encourage speedy studying through interactive discussions and activities. The educators can engage the students in classroom sessions where group discussions take place or working on a common project can also help.
3. Content management
Content is the king. It is because of the content that the students are attracted towards the module and want to purchase it for enhancing their education. Hence, the catalogue should be drafted intellectually so that it delivers high quality learning material across all topics.
4. Help and Support
Any good software system offers help and support services. It can either be through online discussion boards or through panels created for answering questions. Sometimes a 24*7 support helpline number is also mentioned for quick redressal of their student’s problems. This makes the LMS responsive in nature and ideal for students to learn from.
5. Social media tabs
Many software systems nowadays have started keeping social tabs for their students and users for interaction with their peers. They can discuss their queries and share their learning experiences.
6. Dynamic design feature
Dynamic design feature is to make the software responsive in nature. It should be made in such a manner that it adapts to the user’s mode of assessing the software. For example: if a student wants to run the application on a mobile phone, it should automatically convert the interface to that of the phone.
7. LMS should have good Artificial Intelligence (AI)
An AI can help the LMS to integrate the suggestions and the formats of the users. Making it customer friendly and personalised. It can pick up topics from the subject matter which are done and completed and offer suitable suggestions for future learnings.
8. Parental Involvement
This feature is extremely important for young learners. It is like conducting a virtual parent-teacher conference. The parents can keep a track of their child’s performance, check their quiz results, look into their assignments and more. Through parental involvement the main idea of schools is to encourage parents to take active participation in their child’s education and be a part of their academic learning journey.
Building an educational platform takes time, effort and proper planning. So, make sure to conduct a deep study before choosing the right LMS for academic learning. It should be able to maintain the quality of the materials to self-serve the students as much as possible.