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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Test LMS

In the past, I've had a few posts around how you can test your courses under an LMS:
One of the problems cited was the lack of available LMS test environments. Recently I've seen two possible approaches that seem quite interesting - although we've not yet tried them (so I would love to get feedback).

One is a Moodle installation that allows teachers to get up and going cheaply. You can use a free-trial and then test.

Probably the most interesting is: Open Source CMS - a site that has a whole bunch of open source tools installed so that you can play around with them. The site is reset periodically and has a count down timer. Anything you do will get lost after that timer. But still it's a great way to show people the basics of what an LMS does. And I believe you could then get your courses tested.

The eLearning software I saw was:
  • ATutor
  • Claroline
  • Docebo suite
  • Dokeos
  • DrupalEd
  • Interact
  • Moodle
  • SyndeoCMS
It also has a bunch of content management systems, a CRM (SugarCRM) and others ...
  • Wikis:
    • BoltWire
    • DokuWiki
    • MediaWiki
    • PmWiki
    • WikkaWiki
  • Blogs:
    • Dotclear
    • Eggblog
    • FlatPress
    • Globber
    • LifeType
    • Loudblog
    • Nucleus CMS
    • Serendipity
    • SimplePHPBlog
    • Textpattern
    • WikyBlog
    • WordPress
    • Zomplog
I hope someone will play around a bit and let me know how this works out for them.


Dave said...

Another great option is go with a cheap hosting provider such as Dreamhost who for $99 a year allows you to do automatically have them install moodle for you, and update it when new updates come out. At Articulate we use that pretty extensively for testing.

I have to check out the other suggestions.


Dave said...

Ok, just tried testing some content in about half of them, and not one of the ones I tried could I actually take a SCORM course that I tried to upload. I either couldn't figure out how to upload, got errors that prevented me from uploading, or would be logged out for no apparent reason (using IE7).

The problem with Learning Management Systems in general is that they are a complete PITA to figure out how to use. There is a real shortage of usability experts in the LMS field.

The only Learning Management Systems (or LMS like) I actually have found pretty easy to use are Moodle, and Articulate Online, with Moodle being a distant second behind Articulate Online.

I might sound like a homer trying to sell our product, but really every time I try out a new LMS it reminds me of why we built Articulate Online the way that we did, and why it has become successful.

Well, anyway, thanks for posting this Tony.