An LMS is a software that is used for planning, creating, delivering, assessing and tracking eLearning courses, their applications and outcomes.
Typically, an LMS provides instructors with ways for
- creating and delivering content,
- monitoring the participation of students, and
- assessing how students perform.
The LMS may also offer higher level of interactivity in eLearning, like
- video conferencing,
- threaded discussions, and
- discussion forums.
Sponsored by the US Department of Defense, the Advanced Learning Distance group has come up with a set of specifications referred to as SCORM, or Shareable Content Object Reference Model, in order to promote the standardization of the Learning Management System. This is too allow eLearning courses to be integrated with any number of LMS.
At the very base, an LMS should have these features:
- Centralized and automated administration;
- Self-guided services;
- Compile and deliver learning content quickly;
- Consolidate initiatives for training on a scalable platform for web use;
- Support standards and portability (SCORM);
- Customize content and enable the reuse of knowledge; and
- Deliver webinars and training sessions online.
Most people and employees today spend most of their time on the computer connected to the Internet. So why not take advantage of that connectivity to broaden how the education system can reach anyone who wants to learn. By making learning more accessible, learning becomes easier.
An LMS is usually a web-based software. This allows for learning to expand beyond the four walls of a classroom, making it possible for distance learning to be enjoyed by as many people as possible. This also eliminates the need for physical books and classrooms with you can host supporting learning materials and discussion online.