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Use Case Scenarios for Classes, Courses, and Groups in Learning Management Systems (LMSs)

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By David Boggs, CEO of SyberWorks

Classes, courses, and groups may be used in many different ways to organize, manage, and track your training depending upon the internal organization and design of your Learning Management System (LMS). In some systems, creating an online class may be separate from a course. It all really depends on how the Learning Management System treats each of these distinctions. For example, a course may contain the content of an online-learning module that could include one or more lessons and possibly (but not necessarily) a test, to gauge knowledge gained and show mastery of the course material. Classes can be used to deliver the content to specific students at specific times according to the Learning Management System's internal organization and constraints.

In some systems, classes may be used to group individuals for many other business purposes, like enrollment. For example, a company may enroll all of its new hires in a New_Hire class for the month of August. Groups may then be assigned to the class, to allow its members to communicate with each other, and with the assigned “instructor” who will manage their new-hire orientation. New hires may have various types of course material that are used in their training. Some of those elements may be:

Two special enrollment methods deserve mention: e-Commerce and self-registration. E-Commerce functionality is normally used when you want class members (who are approved to take a course) to pay for its content. Self-registration functionality allows class members to sign up for course material at their discretion, and may or may not be used in concert with e-Commerce.

These enrollment methods are normally used to admit students to traditional online classes (or to physical instructor-led classes), and to collect payments for taking them. However, e-Commerce and self-registration functionality also may be used in other creative ways, such as, to automatically run and administer an online Company Store that sells useful materials and training to:

I have only briefly described a few ways that you can use classes, courses, and groups to further your company's business objectives. Hopefully, these ideas will inspire you to find other creative applications of the Learning Management System you use in your own organization!

About the Author:

Dave Boggs is the founder and CEO of SyberWorks, Inc (www.syberworks.com). He has been involved with computer-based and web-based training for more than twelve years. Before founding SyberWorks, Dave was the VP of Sales and Business Development for Relational Courseware. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Union College in Schenectady, NY, and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL.

The Boggs e-Learning Chronicle Blog & The Online Training Content Journal

Dave Boggs writes two web blogs: the Boggs e-Learning Chronicle RSS feed about Trends, Observations, and Information in e-Learning, which reports on trends, provides observations, and information about e-Learning and web-based training; and the Online Training Content Journal RSS feed about Trends, Observations, and Information in e-Learning which looks at best practices, techniques, and trends in online training development and e-Learning instructional design..

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