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How to Design Your LMS Features to Support Distance Learning?

By Shrikant Srivastava
December 29, 2020 4. min read
Last update on: February 3, 2021

The pandemic has jump-started the transformation of an educational system that has been known to be too slow to evolve, historically. With COVID-19 shutting down schools, over 1.2 billion children were forced out of their classrooms. While their homes become classrooms, their parents became both tech support agents and co-teachers, and the internet became their single source of learning. 

While the education domain had been grappling with doing something different for a very long time, the pandemic forced them to transform and explore robust LMS platforms. With coronavirus mutating to its more deadly self, remote learning platforms are preparing to stay for the long haul. 

At a time like this, educators need to ask: Is the LMS I am using prepared for the changing demands in the education sector? Are the features of LMS platforms ready for the distance? 

Here, we will be discussing the remote learning enabling features that should be present in all the online learning platforms as we enter 2021 and prepare to make your LMS system for online teaching to join the sector’s growth statistics. 

global learning management system market

As we enter a new year, it is important to understand what didn’t work for a majority of the online learning platforms in 2020, so that the same mistakes are not repeated in the year to come. 

What Didn’t Work for Learning Management System for Schools in 2020

One issue that I can presume to be the biggest factor behind criticisms from digital learning platforms in 2020 was the learnability curve. Both instructors and students were very new to the idea of online learning, which made the adoption of LMS distance learning a challenge for the industry as a whole. The fact that teachers and students were extremely habitual to the traditional learning structure kept them from realizing the true benefits of distance learning with LMS platforms. 

As we enter 2021, we will have to note that the best LMS systems will be the ones that are easy to operate and is scalable enough to support x number of students and study material. Educators will also have to look into a change in the way they deliver classes and course material – switching from reading material to visual or integrating immersive technologies like AR/VR in course delivery. 

Besides these, let us look into some of the top reasons why educators asked for an LMS software switch. These reasons, on many grounds, also act as the key factors why education startups fail.

Top reasons for LMS software switch

These pointers, irrespective of the percentage count of people having issues with them are a good place for educators to start when designing LMS platforms. So the next time you connect with an elearning app development company, ask them their plans around handling these challenges to get an idea of how prepared they are to handle your projects surrounding learning management systems in higher education or online learning platforms for businesses. 

Now that we have peeked into the issues that made educators ask for an LMS switch, let us look into the features that would help you biome one of the Best online learning platforms in 2021. 

Remote Learning Friendly Features That Would Define The Best elearning Platforms in 2021

factors in lms purchase decisions

1.  Considerate of different network conditions

The difference in network conditions is one of the biggest issues attached to the mass adoption of LMS solutions. Even amidst the pandemic world when instructors and students were forced to use an LMS, low internet connectivity issues are what is keeping them from having seamless learning and teaching experience. 

To solve the crippling issue, educational app developers will have to concentrate their efforts on native software development and other offline-friendly technologies like progressive web applications. On the other hand, the system will have to be developed with a hybrid approach in mind – some features (like document creation, modification) should be available on an offline mode while others must be online only (like test and assessment).

2.  High concurrency friendly 

One of the ways you can make your LMS solution a profitable business model is making it high concurrency friendly. By enabling all your students and teachers to be active on the platform at once while performing the usual session tasks like video conferencing, documents upload and download, report management, etc. you will be able to create a seamless experience, one which is glitch-free. 

The only way you’ll be able to do it is through the creation of a high-concurrency friendly LMS software. 

3. Presence of content development tools 

If we enlist the top functionalities of an LMS software, the one that would top the series in every educational software development services list, it’s the presence of content creation tools. 

While for the students, the content that they’ll generally have to create would be text, voice, and image-based; teachers or instructors will have to work around the creation of interactive content like videos, quizzes, assessments, etc. 

The best online learning platforms will be ones that enable the stakeholders to create the content within the application and thus save the complexity and time it takes to upload the content from another platform. 

4.  Cross-platform integration

Gone are the days when online-learning-centric students used to study on one LMS. In order to keep today’s students and instructors engaged, you will have to give them cross-platform capabilities. They will want to be reminded of when the homework is due on their Alexa device and have an immersive learning session on a VR device. 

For an education app development company, there’s no exciting time for the domain as now. Partner with an agency that holds expertise in technologies that create a seamless omni-channel learning experience

5.  Extension and scalability friendly 

The requirement around extensibility and scalability are two-sided. While on one hand, the LMS software must be designed to fit in extensive courses and assessment – one that would grow from class to class, on the other hand, it should be made to fit the technicality level of the system in place in schools. 

What LMS providers will have to consider in 2021 that unlike 2020, where the entire year ended with students being at home, there’s a high probability that they will return to schools. So, it’s important that the data which went into the LMS have a way to be synced with the traditional software in schools. 

While here were the features that instructors and students will be expecting as advantages of learning platforms, which a mobile learning app development company will be able to help with, there are other things YOU – the LMS brand owner will have to note. 

Here are some pointers that were noted by a Bay View Analytics survey which carried information on what faculties felt to be the most helpful functionality for them when conducting classes online – 

what assistance would be more helpful

All the features that we covered in the article have been hand-picked by our in-house e learning app development experts. We believe that these features when integrated with other key features of a successful LMS software, can help make your product one that is best suited for scalable distance-learning LMS needs. 

In case you have another idea you wish to discuss with us, get in touch with our eLearning software development team.

Shrikant Srivastava
Shrikant Srivastava
Director - Presales
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