Learning management system
A Learning Management System (sometimes also called "Course Management System", "Pedagogical Platform", "E-Learning Platform") is a software system that delivers courseware plus e-tutoring over the Internet.
LMS should not be your starting point. Typically, when decision makers talk about E-Learning they want to know what system to install. First of all, so called LMS are not the only answer, you also can implement E-Learning with other tools (e.g. groupware, content management systems or even a wiki or other hypertext system, often in combination with a forum. Second, in any case you should start by thinking about an appropriate instructional design that uses appropriate teaching strategies for various learning types.
““LMS” is a catchall term in SCORM. It refers to a suite of functionalities designed to deliver, track, report on and manage learning content, learner progress and learner interactions. “LMS” can apply to very simple course management systems, or highly complex enterprise-wide, distributed environments.” (SCORM 2004 3rd Edition Overview Version 1.0)
- LAMS A good learning design system that we can recommend (for people with serious activity-based e-learning in mind)
- Rapid elearning (for mostly simple facts & skills training needs)
- LCMS (Learning content management systems)
- Student management system
Components of an LMS
Feature lists are getting quite long and it is not easy to decide which features are the most important unless you have a good background in various areas like instructional design, ergonomics and systems management.
Typical features are:
- Course Management, e.g. lists of courses, registration, credit information and syllabus, pre-requisites
- Teaching Materials, i.e. courseware
- Self-assessment quizzes
- Lessons tools: Authoring for contents (structured XML or HTML) and quizzing/testing (e.g. Java Script generators) or alternatively ability to import standard IMS or SCORM packages developed with an external tool (e.g. Dreamweaver).
- Asynchronous Communication: email, forums
- Synchronous Communication: chat, whiteboard, teleconferencing,
- Student tools: Home page, self tests, bookmarks, progress tracking, ....
- Student Management Tools: progress tracking, on-line grading (assessment), ....
- Learner feedback: course evaluation surveys, test evaluation surveys etc.
Usually LMS are closed circuit platforms (logins, restricted access to classes), so the idea of sharing contents and reusing products generated during classes does not exist in the world of "LMSs" (main-stream e-learning).
List of software
These lists needs updating, therefore, before looking our lists please check the links section at the end of this page. Others do a much better job than we do - Daniel K. Schneider 14:23, 20 November 2012 (CET)
Free / Open Sourcource Portalware
Software to install on your own server,
- Amadeus (the Brazilian Federal Government public software LMS)
- ATutor (used at TECFA our student's to play with)
- chamilo (made by people who left the Dokeos development)
- Dokeos (popular in french and spanish speaking countries)
- e-Learning XHTML Editor (contents can then be imported to most LMSs).
- eFrontLearning (fairly user friendly, not tested)
- Fle3 (research system, maybe dead)
- interact (Dead link)
- KEWL.Nextgen (Dead link)
- Moodle (used at TECFA for several courses)
- OpenUSS and sourceforge site
- Sakai, “a community source software development effort to design, build and deploy a new Collaboration and Learning Environment (CLE) for higher education.”
- Segue (dead project)
- Stud.IP (Studienbegleitender Internetsupport von Präsenzlehre). More like a portal, made for German higher education.
- WordPress LMS (since summer 2012).
You can try out some of these system at http://www.opensourcecms.com/ (in addition to many other portalware). You will have full administrator rights (all systems will be refreshed every hour).
(Most are commercial, basic services may be free)
- Haiku LMS
- Canevas, a popular recent cloud-based system. As of 2013, many sites seem to migrate from Blackboard to this. It does have a Auth2 / https / JSON based API. Single teachers can sign up for free.
- FeatherCap (trial version available)
- ProProfs (free version available)
- Blackboard Vista (former WebCT)
- Halogen eLearning Manager
- TopYX, a service-based social LMS
- Rapid Intake (several tools, both for corporate and school environments).
See also rapid elearning, more popular in industry (low-level) training
There are many sites that will give you advice on how to choose a standard, main-stream E-Learning System:
- List of learning management systems (300+) at elearningindustry.com
- Course Management Systems (formerly Landonline).
- Probably the best site out there, if you are interested in criteria-based selection of an LMS
- This site was built to assist higher education in using a more rational decision making process to review the many options for a course management system.
- LMS Talk List of products, forum, etc.
- Elearning Platforms (Learning Management Systems) by EduTech, the technological support for the Swiss Virtual Campus project. Much shorter list, but enough for most of us ....
- LernmanagementSysteme.DE German blog about LMS, includes a large comparative table of LMS's (added oct. 2011).
- Wikipedia also has a list under the misleading Virtual learning environment title. A VLE should IMHO reproduce a social environment, LMSs don't do that.
- The Re.ViCa wiki has been set up to provide an inventory and to show the results of a systematic review of Virtual Campus initiatives of the past decade within higher education throughout the world.
- List of learning management systems (Wikipedia)
- What is an LMS Free educational resource site with comprehensive articles explaining the different aspects of Learning Management Systems: features checklists, cost comparisons, support & technology, enterprise LMS checklists, LMS vendor comparisons, LMS & LCMS comparisons, proprietary/open source & SaaS LMS comparisons and many more.