Learning management systems or â€œlearning environmentsâ€ as John Baker (2012) called them seem to be an all-encompassing way to house various technologies so that students, parents,Â teachers and administrators can access them.Â At the start of this presentation I did not have an in-depth knowledge of learning management systems (LMS), what they encompassed or what they could be used for.Â After the presentation I saw a lot of potential from both an administrators and teachers point of view.Â Unfortunately I also see potential obstacles that schools may face trying to put an LMS into action effectively.
Â There are a number of issues that I see with the use of an LMS within a school.Â Obviously there would be the cost associated with the technology, not only with the software itself, but with possible infrastructure upgrades needed to host this technology.Â Bringing in a new initiative from my experience if not done properly with appropriate support can fall flat.Â With regards to that, there needs to be training and support for all users.Â From the teachers there would be a huge time commitment as they are the ones that are going to be responsible for producing the content and keeping it updated.Â Unless this initiative came from the bottom up, I believe that it would be a struggle to move forward successfully, especially with the amount of work that I perceive being part of this project.Â Â Another issue I see, is with the ability of an LMS to allow for necessary social contact.Â Dunlap & Lowenthal (2009) state that one of the components missing from LMSs is the social interaction that gives the perception of a more human contact.Â This social presence allows for connections to be made between students and faculty which leads to collaboration and allows for more purposeful communication.Â
Â I do believe that there could be a lot of potential for this type of a product both from a teachers and administrators point of view.Â As Dalsgaard (2006) points out, â€œuniversities primarily use LMS for administrative purposes, and that LMS so far have had limited impact on pedagogyâ€(Introduction, para. 1).Â The ability to drill down into the data and track students experiencing difficulties would be essential for administrators.Â With the ability to use the Analytics portion of this program, teachers and administrators can keep track of studentsâ€™ performance in order to put interventions in place before it is too late.Â As far as having a limited impact on pedagogy, I believe that a teacher would need to see how they could use an LMS system in order to improve their teaching.Â For example, as John Baker (2012) pointed out in his presentation, teachers have the ability to link outcomes to specific questions, assignments or test items.Â This would provide the teacher with a much more specific picture of how students are doing, where they require more support and what direction the teacher should be going in to help the students.Â This type of a product could allow teachers to better structure their lesson in order to meet the studentsâ€™ needs.Â Â
Â Baker, J. (2012, February).Â D2L story and overview.Â Speech presented for EDER 679.29 L06 Elluminate class, Calgary, Alberta
Â Dalsgaard, C. (2006). Social software: E-learning beyond learning management systems. Eurpean Journal of Open, Distance and E-Learning.
Â Dunlap, J. & Lowenthal, P. (2009). Tweeting the Night Away: Using Twitter to enhance social presence. Journal of Information Systems Education, 20(2), 129-135.