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What is a LMS?

A comprehensive guide about Learning Management Systems.


As the name suggests, Learning Management Systems (LMSs) are specialist software applications designed to help make the delivery and management of education and training programmes much easier.

An LMS should have a measurable impact on an organisation’s performance – saving time, stress and costs by having all learning managed through one centralised dashboard. They are used by all types of organisation; public and private, large and small.

They can be used to simply distribute and record completion of online training or for delivering a blended college course over the internet, utilising video conferencing to encourage online collaboration.

There are well over 600 different LMSs available, though they are divided by three main characteristics. This guide aims to cover all of the functions you would expect an LMS to contain but also outlines some emerging themes in the market.

It draws upon the experience of developing Virtual College’s third generation LMS, Enable, and knowledge gained through 20 years of designing and delivering Virtual College’s online training.

Where relevant, examples from Enable are provided to illustrate various aspects of LMS functionality.

Learning Management System on a tablet

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