LMS Trends And How They Impact Key Players In The Ecosystem
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Ways LMS Trends Impact Key Players In The Ecosystem

Let's start with the basic. An LMS, in simple terms, is a web-based/software application that allows organizations and educational institutions in delivering content and resources to their learners.

Many industries use an LMS for compliance training, and educational institutions primarily use one to enhance their classroom teaching.

The Key Benefits Of Having An LMS

  1. Centralized learning
  2. Simplified learning process
  3. Tracking and reporting
  4. Real-time evaluation capabilities

Different Players In An LMS Ecosystem

  • Learner
    The user who logs in to the application to search, request and complete skill or competency-based training.
  • Manager
    The one identified with direct reports and who can monitor the progress of trainings to the direct reports.
  • Approver
    The one who is required to approve the training request based on the approval workflow set up in the system.
  • Instructor
    The one who can schedule, deliver and manage the roster for the scheduled, classroom-based session.
  • System Admin
    The one who will manage system configuration and security roles or permissions.
  • Learning Admin
    The one who will do the learning assignments to a group of users based on business/regional requirements.
  • Content Publisher
    The one who is responsible for creating online content and loading it into the system for learners to use.
  • Content Administrator
    The one who will set up the course metadata, availability in the system, and the one who is responsible to create a curriculum with the structure/rules applied.
  • Report Administrator
    The one who can create custom reports and share them with a business based on business requirements.

Key Upcoming LMS Trends And How They Are Going To Impact Key Players In The LMS Ecosystem

1. Gamification

  • Applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals.
  • It has proven to increase learning speed and retention.

How it is going to impact the key players in the LMS ecosystem:

  • Learner
    Scores will become secondary, and learners will be after points, badges, and trophies. It will create a competitive spirit among learners in terms of leaderboards. Overall, gamification will improve learners' ability to recall and master the topic with more involvement.
  • Instructor
    In addition to the scheduling, delivering and managing the roster, and going forward, they will be including game elements in the curriculum. They will gamify the learning process but not the outcome.
  • Content Publisher
    They will have to include game elements as part of the overall learning content.
  • Content Administrator
    They will be moderating the content to ensure that none of the game techniques and design is violating the organization standards or contains any sexual or abusive content.

2. Mobility-Enabled Learning

  • Mobile penetration continues to grow, and soon it will become a dominant medium for offering learning material.
  • It will help in delivering training anywhere and anytime.

How it is going to impact the key players in the LMS ecosystem:

  • Learner
    Everybody has at least one smartphone in their hands, and they will be completing their tests, reading their material, attending webinars and doing everything through their mobile phones. Statisticians already believe that mobile learning will increase the learning rate more than traditional learning did.
  • Instructor
    They will be reviewing, developing and approving the mobile-based content and would also be tracking the stats, the test-completion percentage and the content consumption from learners.
  • Content Publisher
    They must start adopting different methods to develop the content which will be suitable for mobile learning, so tests, for example, need to be mobile compatible with the ability to record completions and attendance. All the legacy courses need to be modified or updated to be mobile compatible, and here is an opportunity for everybody to review their existing content and put their nextgen mobile content together.
  • Content Administrator
    They will be moderating the mobile content to ensure that no part of the content is violating the organization standards or contains any sexual or abusive mobile learning content.

3. Self-Directed and Social Learning

  • The learning mechanism is now more self-directed, and the use of social tools for learning even greater.
  • The current generation is so tuned to social networks that it is pragmatic to get, share and learn information from them.

How it is going to impact the key players in the LMS ecosystem:

  • Learner
    Everybody is connected to social networks and, on average, people spend 2 hours on social networks. So as we move forward, they will be clarifying their queries and questions, sharing their knowledge with their social network friends. Creating debates or discussions and sharing insights on a particular topic will become as easy as posting a tweet with several likes and dislikes. The social conversation will ultimately lead to astute social learning for the learners.
  • Instructor
    They will be clarifying things, answering the learners' queries and, in some cases, moderating the content posted by the learners. They would be initiating the threads or discussions and they could be also sharing key information for the learners online.
  • Content Publisher
    Here, the learners themselves will be becoming the content publisher and would be able to tailor content according to their interest and perspective.
  • Content Administrator
    They will be moderating the social content to ensure that no part of the content is violating the organization standards or contains any sexual or abusive learning content. They will be playing the role of an administrator moderating the blog.

4. Augmented Learning

  • Augmented learning is an on-demand learning technique where the environment adapts to the learner.
  • Leveraging Augmented Reality for learning.

How it is going to impact the key players in the LMS ecosystem:

  • Learner
    A mechanic can experience fixing a car without actually getting inside it. The concept of 'practice makes perfect' will soon become easier with augmented learning where the learner can experience various scenarios; be it understanding different aspects of the pyramid of Giza or the length and breadth of the great wall of China.
  • Instructor
    They will be exhibiting the artifacts using this technology by taking the learner to the augmented learning space. Imagine the instructor explaining the various planets in space by taking you to the planet itself; be it Mars, Venus or Jupiter.
  • Content Publisher
    They must start adopting different methods to develop the content so that the augmented environment can be created for the learners and instructors. This technology is still in its nascent stages. The cost of the development is high though.
  • Content Administrator
    They will be moderating the augmented content to ensure that no part of it is violating the organization standards or contains any sexual or abusive learning content.

Conclusion

Many organizations have already implemented or have included these trends as part of their learning roadmap. The day when we will no longer have classroom sessions and every session is a webinar accessed through mobile, not even through a desktop or laptop, is not really far. The instructors will be explaining the nuances of the Pythagoras theorem using Augmented Learning, and the learners will be debating about it using their social networks while their instructors will be posting their fun facts as part of the debate discussion. These trends will revolutionize the way an organization takes its people through the learning journey. Take, for example, how it would be if a mechanic could access every relevant information through his/her mobile, 'having' a car close to him/her and presenting the ability to 'break it down' to its individual parts. At the same time, the mechanic would have the ability to discuss any problems that come up with his/her supervisor in such a simple way as he would do when chatting with a friend; just by using the social network, earning badges, trophies, and medals along the way. Overall, the change is upon us, and everybody in the learning ecosystem needs to embrace this change.

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