LMS Software Features & Functions Explained

3rd-party connectors
Built-in funcationality that allows the LMS to connect and communicate with other third-party products to provide extended functionality without additional coding needed.

API
Known as Application Programming Interface, a set coding protocols and tools for creating functionality or communicating with other software. Also see 3rd-party connectors.

Asynchronous Learning
Mode of learning that allows students to access learning materials at different times and different locations at their own individual pace.

Blended Learning
Combination of asynchronous and synchronous learning where various learning materials be accessible anytime while other materials are only accessible at set times with all students online at once.

Content Authoring
Built-in content authoring and editing tools used to create and modify learning materials materials.

Content Library
Built-in pre-authored learning modules that can be used as is for specific purposes, such as customer service or marketing.

eCommerce support
Built-in functionality that allows for the online sale of various pre-packaged learning modules.

Extended Enterprise
Learning materials that can be used outside the corporate network for training external partners, vendors, and customers.

Gamification
Learning materials that offer incentives to stay engaged such as points, badges, and other achievements. Also called game-based learning.

Gradebook
Feature that allows instructors to enter, store, and view student grades for a specific course.

Mobile Support
Allows students to access learning materials from any mobile device, with the ability to synchronize where they left off on a desktop computer or laptop.

Onboarding
Corporate training geared toward bringing a new employee up to speed with a company.

SCORM Compliant
Known as Shared Content Object Reference Model, SCORM is an established industry standard that allows LMS systems to easily import third-party content without duplication or recoding. Also see xAPI.

Skills Certification
LMS elements used to generate and manage student certificates after successfully completing a mandated course. Often used to satisfy industry compliance and auditing requirememnts.

Skills Tracking
Part of Testing/Assessment tools used to monitor and track student progress towards completion of training.

Social Learning
LMS elements that allow collaborative communications among students, such as real-time chat, forum boards, and other elements.

Synchronous Learning
Mode of learning that requires all students to access learning materials together at set times in real-time with an instructor online. Also called Virtual Classroom.

Student Portal
Also known as a dashboard, a student portal is the "home page" for a student to log-in, view notifications, featured courses, calendar of events, courses completed, and other information. Student portals can be branded and customized by the corporation or instructor.

Testing/Assessments
Tools such as quizzes and exams implemented into learning materials at set points. Analytical tools are also provided that guide the instructor or student in verifying proficiency or identifying learning gaps.

Video Conferencing
Ability to have live video streaming of class sessions and learning materials.

xAPI Compliant
Also known as Tin Can, xAPI is a newer industry standard that allows LMS systems to easily import third-party content without duplication or recoding. Also see SCORM.

Virtual Classroom
Another name for Synchronous Learning.