What is the difference between a Learning Management System and a
Learning Content Management System?
Learning Management Systems - LMS are reporting systems and generally do not include ways to
create new content or to deliver small packets of learning.
LMS were created for:
; tracking registration
; class lists
; test results
; class scheduling
; other administrative requirements of schools and instructor-led classes
An LMS helps in running a learning organisation.
It does not help create or deploy content.
It does not track students through a particular course.
It does not enable Tutors to communicate with the
Learning Content Management Systems
The need for companies to be able to create their own SCORM compliant learning objects drove the
development of the LCMS.
Business on the internet is in real time, therefore content development and knowledge access must also be
in real time.
An LCMS provides authoring, sequencing, and aggregation tools that structure content to
facilitate the learning process. The IDC whitepaper, "Learning Content Management
Systems: Comparative Analysis of Emerging Technologies," identifies the
components of an LCMS as:
; an authoring application,
; templates and storyboarding capabilities, and may be used to
convert existing content.
; a data repository,
; uses meta data to store and manage individual learning objects.
; a delivery interface,
; dynamically serves content that can be modified to reflect a
certain look or feel, such as organizational branding.
; administration tools.
; manage learner profiles, course catalogues, offer collaboration
tools, including chat, integrated email, and threaded discussion
groups.and so forth.
"An organisation has training content such as Word files, PowerPoint presentations,
Flash animations, and assessment spread throughout its departments. Using an LCMS,
an organisation can aggregate content in a single system, then manipulate it and apply
structure to create and deliver courses," explains Guillermo Leija, product manager for
Global Knowledge's LCMS Knowledge Pathways. "In essence, an LCMS lets an
organisation take control of content," he says. Ryann K. Ellis
LCMS can help organisations to aggregate their existing content into component parts in a single system; imagine a lego system of knowledge blocks.
Companies have the ability to take these knowledge blocks and assemble them anyway the user wants. A LCMS will manage the workflow of the content. Real time business means a continuous flow of information and this needs to be managed. In particular the LCMS gets the right content to the right people and at the right time.
These versioning capabilities of a LCMS are essential to communicate between authors, collate from remote sites (update, review status), and track the information by date.
A quality LCMS adheres to industry standards such as
IMS (Instructional Management System) and ADL’s
SCORM (Sharable Courseware Object Reference
It supports and manages internally and externally (third
party) created learning content, and thus preserves the
investment companies are making in learning content.
The Learning System must be dynamic.
To be a learning content management system, the content should also be aware of learners. At a minimum, learning content should recognise who the learner is and record information about the learner's experience. When the learner logs on to the system and launches the content, they should be taken straight back to where they last left off. And so their experience continues....
As the learners interact with the content, results are passed back to the system. The system can also change its behaviour based on real time student interaction. This would be based on test scores, learning style preferences, skills, communication abilities, organisational roles or any other relevant data. Refer to diagram below.