Advantages of a 'Mobile First' LMS

Posted on April 15, 2016

Learning Management Systems (LMSs) let you create, deliver, and manage courses and lessons. The courses are delivered electronically, usually either by computer or mobile device. Some LMS solutions deliver computer-only courses while others focus on mobile. What are the advantages of taking a mobile-first approach to an LMS?

It is first important to explore what is meant by “mobile first”. When people look at technology they often think of the delivery of that technology through desktop computers. That is not how many people access content, services, or products, however. People use their smartphones first. In fact, some people only ever access a service or product via a smartphone. Many leading brands recognized this many years ago and adopted a mobile-first approach to their content. Facebook is one of the most well-known examples – they give priority to developing the mobile version of their platform.

So, mobile first prioritizes thinking about the mobile users of your content, product, or service.

The Advantages of a Mobile-First LMS

Designed for mobile: Mobile versions of a course should not be an afterthought, particularly when most users will access the course on mobile. The mobile design of the course and system, including its features and tools, should be the top priority.

Seamless learning experience: Users are becoming increasingly device agnostic. Therefore they expect the learning experience to be seamless across all their devices. A mobile-first LMS can deliver this better than a platform that bolts mobile on after everything else is complete.

Media-handling capabilities: Video, audio, and images are a key part of most mobile learning courses. Mobile-first LMS solutions not only handle a variety of media types but are also optimized for user experience.

Social sharing: Mobile-first LMS solutions enable and encourage social sharing. Sharing in this manner is something that users do frequently using other applications on mobile devices, so it is natural for them to share results and progress on the mobile learning course.

Easy to use: People use computers and mobile devices in different ways. Courses that are designed specifically for mobile devices are therefore easier to use on mobile devices than courses that are designed for computers and later forced onto mobile.

Quick to create: A mobile-first LMS makes it quick and easy to create mobile courses. There is no need for technical or programming knowledge. This allows you to focus entirely on the content of the course.

Regular updates: Providing updates to a course is also quick and easy. Deployment of those updates is simple too, with changes being pushed directly to a user’s device with minimal input or fuss.

Improved completion results: Finally, learners complete mobile learning courses faster than those that are accessible via other methods of delivery, and they are more likely to retain the information. You therefore get better results from a mobile learning course.

Mobile should not be thought of as an additional platform, or an alternative learning experience. Most of your learners would choose mobile over other platforms if given the choice, so mobile should be central to your strategy. That’s why it is so important to use an LMS that puts mobile first.

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