Is There A Difference Between eLearning and an LMS?

The difference between eLearning and a learning management system (LMS) is subtle, but key.

What is eLearning?

The term eLearning is a broad concept—electronic learning—that describes learning material delivered online. It has a ton of benefits.

eLearning is a time and cost-effective way for organizations to keep learners up-to-date on new techniques and important information. Training consistency is easier to handle when the training content is delivered online. And housing the learning material online makes it easy for learners to access it when and where they need it.

Any educational material consumed online—K-12 courses to or the Khan Academy, to higher education, like edX, or YouTube tutorials—is eLearning. Most people have used eLearning informally at some point in their lives, even if they didn’t know it was eLearning at the time.

Of course, when you’re running Learning and Development for an organization or business it doesn’t make much sense just to put learning material online and tell employees to go complete it. You need a way to create the content itself, send it out to learners, track completions, and build a community around the content. This is where an LMS comes in.

What is an LMS?

An LMS is a software platform for delivering learning material online. In addition, it gives you tools to manage training and development, increase learner engagement, and build a sense of community.

You can assign content to specific groups of learners in an LMS. The system has tools that let you track how users move through the eLearning content. It also has tools that let learners interact with the content and each other—which is key. Most learning takes place outside formal educational spaces, where people talk to each other and get a chance to try out knowledge and skills themselves.

Essentially, all LMS learning is actually eLearning, but not all eLearning is done in an LMS.


Who uses the Wisetail LMS?

Organizations of all types who want to grow their passionate workforce through online learning and development.

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