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Learning Management Systems (LMS)

Best Learning Management Systems (LMS)

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Learning Management System (LMS) Overview

What is a Learning Management System?

A Learning Management System (LMS) is a platform that helps instructors manage and organize educational materials online and conduct online courses. Learning management systems help streamline the learning process by providing a central location for accessing material online and developing content. LMS software is used by K-12 schools, higher education institutions, school districts, etc.


This software benefits administrators, teachers, and students. Students and teachers can access and upload course material such as calendars, syllabi, assignments, and grades. LMS platforms also allow instructors and administrators to track student progress on an individual basis and at the aggregate level. This software also helps minimize the use of paper materials.

Corporate LMS and Learning Content Management Systems

Vendors typically offer either education-focused or corporate-focused LMS. However, some companies offer platforms that can be used for both purposes. Corporate learning management systems are commonly used internally for employee training and externally for customer training. Corporate LMS that are used for online employee training may also be called training management systems, or eTraining/ eLearning portals.


Both corporations and educators may use learning content management systems (LCMS) to organize and create content for learning or training purposes. LCMS software focuses on digital learning as the primary educational medium and allows the instructor to create new content. Alternatively, LMS platforms do not focus exclusively on digital learning, they also manage in-person and off-line learning.


LMS vs. eLearning Software

While there is some overlap between LMS platforms and eLearning software, there are a few key differences between the two.


ELearning content software offers the user access to a curated digital library that can include videos, ebooks, and online courses/lessons. The primary function of eLearning software is to provide the user with a large content library for self-guided learning or integration with an LMS platform.


LMS platforms, on the other hand, may not offer content libraries at all. Instead, they focus more on managing the learning process and storing and tracking individual/ aggregate progress. Most vendors offer eLearning software that can be integrated with an LMS platform.

Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)

The term ‘virtual learning environment’ (VLE) is often used synonymously with LMS. These two terms essentially refer to the same products, but emphasize different aspects of the software.


VLEs typically have a larger focus on the collaborative aspect of learning. Products that are marketed as a VLE may have stronger discussion, forum, or student collaboration features. On the other hand, LMS has traditionally referred to products with strong performance tracking and analysis capabilities.


Another difference between the two terms is that VLEs are exclusively used in the academic setting. Alternatively, LMS can be used for educational and corporate training purposes. This category comprises mostly academic LMS, and corporate-focused LMS can be found in the Corporate LMS category.


LMS Features & Capabilities

Most LMS platforms offer a basic set of features:
  • Content creation: Allows instructors to author content and use web tools to embed files from the web or their own files into lesson materials.

  • Content management: Allows instructors to share materials between courses and upload materials from the web or their own files.

  • Assessment creation: Ability to create new questions/ assessments - including support for various question types, randomization of MCQs, the ability to import third-party question banks etc..

  • Assessment management: This can include automatic updating of questions and automatic and manual marking.

  • Learning object repository (LOR): An online library for sharing, storing, searching, and managing learning objects (e.g. content, specific lessons etc..)

  • Grading and feedback tools: This can include the ability to annotate student submissions and create student reports.

  • Course management: This can include course catalogs, course registration management, calendars, gradebooks, and virtual classrooms.

  • Student and instructor portals: Individual portals for students/instructors to access course materials.

  • Collaboration tools: Ability to comment and share on the LMS interface through channels such as live chat, blog articles, and discussion boards/threads.

  • Progress data and analytics: Ability to track student progress against standards such as Common Core or NGSS, identify gaps in individual learning, and set customized learning objectives.

  • SCORM/ AICC/ Tin Can Compliant: Ability for an eLearning software and LMS to interact over a standard protocol.


Some vendors offer more advanced capabilities or features aimed more at corporate buyers rather than education institutions:


  • Social media support: Ability to integrate social learning tools and keep track of student engagement.

  • Mobile app: Allows students and instructors to connect to the LMS interface using a mobile application.

  • Blended learning support: Ability to record, share, and assess off-line learning events such as seminars, workshops, demonstrations etc…

  • Gamification tools: Using game-mechanics in order to boost user engagement - including things like badges, trophies, leaderboards, or points.

  • E-commerce support: Ability to sell educational materials and/or online courses, track purchases, and monitor the performance of marketing initiatives.

Factors to Consider when Selecting an LMS

Since the LMS will be widely used by students, instructors, administrators, and sometimes parents there are a few key things to consider when making a purchase:


  • Mobile app access and quality

  • Institution size / scalability

  • Ease of use

  • Flexibility, scalability and performance of an LMS

Pricing Information

There is a wide range of free or open source LMS software, for example Moodle, Canvas, and Google Classroom. However, these products can be costly to implement and customize, charge extra for non-basic features, and typically do not include support staff.


Commercial offerings such as Blackboard and McGraw-Hill's Connect are an alternative option. These LMS platforms have higher upfront costs (compared to the free versions), but also typically include a dedicated support staff and professional services.

More Resources

Learning Management Products

Listings (51-75 of 82)

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GyrusAim is a Learning Management System (LMS). It provides training solutions for instructor-led training, eLearning /online learning, and blended learning. It also allows for training administration, maintenance, and customization.

We don't have enough ratings and reviews to provide an overall score.

Everwise provides a corporate learning management solution.

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Geenio is a learning management tool from the company of the same name headquartered in Palo Alto, California.

We don't have enough ratings and reviews to provide an overall score.

Spanish company Floqq offers their eponymous learning platform.

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iversity.org is an education technology company that partners with academic institutions and knowledge-based companies to offer high-quality academic and professional development courses online. Individuals as well as corporate clients and their employees can choose between MOOCs and online profe...

5 Ratings

Fuse is a Learning Solutions Company with a mission to democratise learning and empower individuals to reach their full potential by using the Fuse technology to transform knowledge into engaging and effective social learning experiences. Fuse has designed online learning and knowledge s...

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When employees need answers, they don't read a manual or click through a course. They search the web, or ask someone. In that moment, they need a resource not a course. Looop is the only tool that helps you rapidly deliver context-rich resources on demand so that employees can apply their learnin...

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Thought Industries provides a learning management solution. Founded in 2012, Thought Industries is headquartered in Boston, MA.

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Certica Solutions offers ItemLogic, a learning management system that enables assessment content providers to bring engaging content to the K-12 market with enterprise-class infrastructure to support large-scale item creation, content collection management, and item and assessment delivery.

We don't have enough ratings and reviews to provide an overall score.

Shezartech is an edtech company that has grown rapidly to a complete digital technology capability team. The company provides Nucleus, a web-based LMS and Brainmint, a mobile learning LMS app. Shezartech says their sharp focus on e-learning content development function has enhanced their progres...

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Knewton is a learning management system that provides digital course materials that dynamically adapt to each student’s unique needs.

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MindScroll provides learning management solutions geared toward small and mid-sized businesses.

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CYPHER LEARNING is a company that specializes in providing learning platforms for individuals, schools, businesses, and organizations around the world. CYPHER LEARNING has three products: NEO an LMS for schools and universities, MATRIX an LMS for businesses, and INDIE an LMS for individuals. CYPH...

We don't have enough ratings and reviews to provide an overall score.

Udutu Course Authoring tool helps you create engaging course content. The tool is free, and can be used with no training or programming skills. Components include: > Free cloud-based Course Authoring Tool > Infinitely Scalable Learning Management System > PowerPoint to SCORM Conve...

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itslearning, a Norwegian company, offers their learning management system (LMS) to educators in K-12 and higher education seeking a management console for curriculum and course content, customizable content delivery, in-built collaboration tools, and a wide array of possible integrations.

We don't have enough ratings and reviews to provide an overall score.

Eurekos is headquartered in Copenhagen with offices throughout Europe. As a learning technology company, their flagship product is the Eurekos Learning Management System, which is the first of its kind to help clients and partners create impactful learning content and repurpose old content, at re...

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Thousands of healthcare providers, including half of U.S. hospitals, have chosen HealthStream (Nasdaq: HSTM) as their partner for improving clinical and business outcomes. In this new era of healthcare reform, meaningful use, and value-based purchasing, hundreds of leading organizations each year...

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Configio, a Community Brands company, offers a scaling event registration platform that at higher pricing tiers includes contact and member management related features and a learning management system (LMS) for delivering and optionally selling online courses and training modules.

We don't have enough ratings and reviews to provide an overall score.

Collaborative and open Skills Management SkillsBoard is a predictive and collaborative Skills Management Solution connecting Companies, Employees and Evaluators for a new Employee Experience. According to the vendor, innovation comes from the collaborative process that involves Employees and Thir...

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Indecomm Global Services headquartered in New Jersey offers the Yellow Platter Learning Suite, a configurable learning management system supporting content authoring and review, publishing content, and learning aid apps.

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The Brainier LMS is a capable and adaptive platform for any sized organization’s learning needs. The reporting wizard generates useful data of learner and trainer analytics. The sophisticated database design will accommodate any combination of user groups and sub-groups.Core functionalities inclu...

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Northpass is building a new category of learning management system (LMS). Our platform gives managers a better way to train teams, customers and partners on their brand, product and best practices. We’ve built a feature suite that enables business professionals with no e-learning expertise, to ea...

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CorePartners, Inc. (CPI) is a high-technology computer engineering company that has built a reputation for excellence in custom software development and IT consulting. CPI was founded in 1998, and incorporated in 2003 in the state of Maryland.Over the years, CPI has delivered advanced technologie...

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BeED is a Learning Management System & Experiential Learning platform. The vendor says that it is a one-stop-shop in school and professional education. Ecosystem was created by OÜ SchoolOS.eu (Tallinn, Estonia) and BeED Adventures (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) to satisfy all curricular and educati...