Organisations make a huge investment in buying an LMS. It might be a little intimidating to choose the perfect LMS as there are hundreds of options available in the market. Many students receive their education fully or partially online and due to the onset of a pandemic, it has become impossible to avoid online learning. Therefore, it is important for schools to be able to choose the best LMS or find a better alternative to an already used software.
What is LMS from Educational Perspective?
LMS is a software that helps in online course integration, manage, track and deliver knowledge and information to the students. There are some learning management systems that provide the facility of online teaching through mobile, while some do not. Some let you create content while some focus on delivering already prepared content.
How to Choose the Best LMS?
Every stakeholder would have different preferences and look for different features in an LMS. Students would prefer an LMS software that will help them in accessing education easily via mobile phones, desktops and laptops, integration of social networks and communication facilities. Teachers would prefer an LMS system that assists them in tracking students records, automated attendance, etc. Parents would look for features that help them to keep track of their child’s performance. So, while choosing an LMS, you need to consider the requirements of all the stakeholders and certain other features such as:
- What is the age group of your learners?
- What skills do your learners already possess and what do you teach?
- Is it necessary for you to train your learners about the use of LMS?
If your learners are kids then you might need to consider connecting with their parents and ask them to help their children out. If your learners are young, you might consider training them if required which completely depends on their skills.
2. Check for the Pricing Structure
Depending on the model, features and other factors, every LMS are available at different rates. Some providers might have hidden prices and might reveal it too late. So, it is always a good idea to research thoroughly about the pricing structure.
There are different kinds of pricing models available:
- Lifetime Licensing
- Pre-user Pricing
- Annual or Monthly Subscription
- Batch Discounts
However, remember that it is not a good idea to only look at the licensing and pricing model of the LMS platforms because there are numerous factors that lie behind the pricing model such as features provided.
3. Mobile-friendly Design
Always look for a mobile-friendly design. This is because people use their mobile phones the most and it becomes easier to reach your target audience as they will be able to learn from anywhere and at any time without having to consider looking for a proper place to sit and learn. Check for the mobile interface of the LMS platform before investing in one.
Before buying an LMS software, list down the questions that you would ask the representative to find out if it fulfils your requirement. Ask them to show a demo. There are many LMS platforms that provide free trials for a week or a month, look for those features so that you have a better idea about the LMS portals and whether to invest in it or not.
As a new buyer, look for the following features:
- The course registration process
- The interface
- Does it ease my work?
Whether you are buying an LMS system for the first time or looking for a replacement, consider the points mentioned above and make the best choice for you, your school and your learners.