Learning Management System (LMS)

A learning management system (LMS), or learning platform, is a software system that defines and provides the interface between the trainer or lecturer, the institution and the student or employee.

Functionality depends on the specific configuration of the LMS. Typical functionalities include user, student and lecturer administration, course and grading administration, roles and rights definitions, communication platforms (chat and forums) and learning tools such as notepads or calendars. The LMS also provides the means to present the course content, learning objectives and media files.

LMSs are widely used in universities, training institutions, schools and companies. Most traditional learning management systems were developed around the year 2000 and have since been continually developed and improved incrementally. It is possible to roughly differentiate between open source solutions (Moodle, OLAT or ILIAS) and commercial vendors.

New technological possibilities have brought about the development of a new generation of learning platforms known as advanced learning management systems (ALMS), or learning management systems 4.0. These differ from traditional LMSs by placing emphasis on the user experience, having a modern document management system (DMS) and being cloud-based and compatible with multiple platforms and clouds.