Open Source Learning Management Systems
5 Key Benefits of Open Source Learning Management Systems
Whether you choose a proprietary or open-source learning management system depends on the needs of your business. However, there are 5 key benefits of an open source LMS that will boost your educational system and give you the best bang for your buck.
But first – what’s the difference?
Open source learning management systems are often termed synonymous with “free” LMS, but this is not always the case (and not just because you “never get anything for free”). An open source learning management system simply denotes a software eLearning company where the code, training, and branding are able to be modified freely – not necessarily “free,” but freely.
In opposition to an open source learning management system is the proprietary LMS. This is software that a company purchases and owns as their own system. It can be web-based, but often a proprietary system deals with hardware or downloadable software.
You can compare it to buying a piece of art. A proprietary LMS is like purchasing a painting – it gives you what you need but it’s static. An open source learning management system is like purchasing the frame – anyone who wants to use that frame can customize what goes inside to be most relevant or current.
The 5 key benefits of an open source learning management system:
An open-source LMS platform provides the freedom to change the eLearning template to meet your business’ needs. You can often use your own brand logo and create and deliver courses on the platform within minutes. Customization demonstrates to employees that your company cares about their education and development.
Along with the freedom of customization comes the freedom of the market. With an open-source LMS, you aren’t stuck to one platform because you are web-based and “open”. You do not want to get locked to one vendor, since your LMS needs may be different down the line. Transferring from a proprietary LMS to a new company is often complex and costly – and sometimes impossible.
As you grow, your platform should grow with you. Similarly, an open-source learning management system means that your vendor needs to continuously fight for your business – which should give you the best service for the best price. The freedom to leave often makes your LMS platform work harder to get you to stay.
In this same vein, open-source learning management systems are constantly undergoing development, which means you should have the best system at any given time. Because they tend to be web-based with a significant team of developer backers, the LMS is consistently getting tweaked, upgraded, and perfected to best suit the needs of the client.
Open-source systems tend to have fewer bugs because they are not dealing with glitchy hardware or putting the pressure on a single IT person. It is a common misconception that open-source LMS is unsecured because “open” should mean open to hackers.
This is false, since the software’s company and developers are consistently watching the system, so it is less likely to see any problems. A propriety LMS, however, often holds a lot of personal data that, if not properly watched, can have crucial security breaches.
You are also less likely to get hacked because you have a large community of online developers behind you. Open-source platforms benefit from a large support system and network of other users, which means that you not only get answers and help from the software developers—but from other clients like you!
Open source learning management systems leave you free to customize, upgrade, and choose how you want to run your education and development program. Take back your company’s learning and make your LMS yours!
Resources – Additional information?
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