Online Learning Management Systems

Online Learning Management Systems

An online learning management system is a software system that allows students – and their parents – to access information related to their education, including grades, assignments, due dates, schedules of tests and quizzes and attendance records. Each student in a class can have his or her own homepage within a learning management system, a page that the student and his/her parents can examine at any time, as long as they have an Internet connection. So if students are absent from school one day, they can use an LMS to find out what they missed. And if parents have concerns about their kids’ rate of homework completion, they can access their children’s records to see if, in fact, they’ve missed any assignments in recent weeks. Many learning management systems also allow for secure communication between teachers and parents through such services as message boards and live chats.

Online learning management systems also provide a convenient way for school administrators to keep tabs on teachers and students: they can review test scores and overall student progress, ensure curriculum standards are being met by every educator, and even find out if a student has recently been cutting a certain class.

LMS’s can be used outside of academics, too – for sports and afterschool clubs. For instance, imagine a high school’s student government decided to utilize an online learning management system. Students who serve as elected representatives could then access their homepages to read itineraries for upcoming meetings, skim through minutes of past meetings, chart the progress of ongoing fundraisers, and so on. Likewise, a sports team could use an LMS to post game results, individual athlete statistics and workout plans.  

Online learning management systems allow schools to greatly reduce the amount of paper they use every year. It’s much more efficient to send messages to parents on an LMS than it is to print those messages out, distribute them to every student, and hope that they don’t get lost on school buses or inside backpacks. 

There are drawbacks to LMS’s, naturally. Some teachers might feel overwhelmed if parents contact them every time a student’s grade begins to dip over the course of a year, or if parents feel the need to offer input on individual lesson plans. And online learning management systems cannot precisely reflect how much effort students put into their schoolwork, nor can they measure the intangibles of student-teacher relationships.

Online learning market place

Apr 27, 2012