Having an LMS (Learning Management System) is important. However, this is only the beginning and just one of the components involved in a virtual training process.
A platform and a learning management system, (in English LMS that means Learning Management System), are the same. Both correspond to the necessary technological infrastructure in which the contents are housed (Virtual Learning Objects -VLO) and educational resources, among others), so that users can access them and from where the teacher or tutor can guide and do the monitoring of the training process.
Although this infrastructure is of great importance, it is not enough, given that the existing content, which we all know from the face-to-face world, needs special treatment and transformation to be adapted to the new virtual environment. The contents must be didactic, attractive and playful but, also, be designed so that users can access the information through all types of devices, whenever they want and from anywhere.
If the expert teacher is not in a physical space (classroom), then how do they interact?
The scenario to present the contents and to interact changes. This is why the interaction must also be designed. Which implies thinking about how to carry out the learning experience that is at a distance and that makes it essential to build effective and functional interaction routes that ensure the appropriation of the content.
What changes in communication if the same physical space is not shared?
One of the challenges of virtual education is to ensure that there is effective communication, now mediated by technology. That is why the message must be built from the area of knowledge, with the support of experts in grammar and proofreading, in such a way that the message is precise, clear and warm; three fundamental characteristics for a successful virtual training process.
Does virtuality exclude accompaniment and guidance in a training process?
The fact that there is talk of virtuality, more and more frequently, does not mean that users who come from the face-to-face world become overnight experts, autonomous and navigate with ease and property through the Virtual Learning Objects (VLO) . In this way, the accompaniment and guidance offered by the expert teacher is a crucial and differentiating factor when it comes to quality in training processes. Consequently, it is also necessary to design activities in real time (on-line) and independent activities (off-line) with their respective feedback.
Do we also have to design educational resources?
Yes, open educational resources (REA) such as videos, podcasts, pdfs, infographics, among others, are the vehicle to present content in a pertinent, educational and playful way. They can be part of a Virtual Learning Object (VLO), or they can be independent of the VLO. In any of the cases, educational resources must also be designed because they play a fundamental role in terms of understanding, participation and construction of knowledge. Each of them has a language (written, visual, sound, audiovisual) and a grammar that intersects with pedagogical needs; therefore, it is imperative to design flexible and reusable educational resources that clearly impact the appropriation of the content and the profitability of any project.
However, it is not necessary to produce all educational resources as there are hundreds of them free of copyright. So, the challenge is to take advantage of that existing content and subject it to updating, transformation and readaptation processes to solve a pedagogical need in training experiences. Likewise, this reduces costs, effort and time.
There are certainly more reasons to say that an LMS is not enough. Only the structural ones are presented here with the aim of inviting you to learn about the subject and consult with experts in design and content production for the virtual modality.
We welcome you.