The Top 3 LearnDash Updates of 2017

As is often the case, this year feels like it has flown by!

I am sure you hear it every year around this time…

“Wow, I can’t believe it’s already December!”

Well, today’s post is no different. 🙂

This year saw a lot happen with regards to updates for LearnDash and our add-ons, and while not every update can make a “splash”, there are some that certainly were very well received by the LearnDash community.

Below is a quick summary of the top three LearnDash updates, but before getting into them let’s start with an honorable mention…

Honorable Mention: ProPanel Front-End Reporting

ProPanel often lives in the shadow of the core LearnDash software, but not on this day! We made a conscience effort to consolidate all the feedback we received over the years relating to ProPanel so that we could bring you additional reports and the often requested front-end reporting capabilities.

Behind the scenes our team has seen a significant decrease in support tickets related ProPanel – which is great because it means that all the hard work we put into optimizing the reports (and providing the data you need) has paid off.

ProPanel is still very much part of our 2018 plans, so look out for continued enhancements!

#3: Course Points and Flexible Learning Paths

This was a fun project for us to work on because it opened up so many possibilities for creating dynamic learning paths and pre-requisites.

It also is in line with the trend of online learning: freedom of choice.

Linear prerequisite paths are quickly becoming a thing of the past. This update was designed so that you could guide your learners in a particular direction but still give them the ability to choose their path.

#2: Guided Video Progression

You all loved this update, and so do we! The video progression feature is a great way to provide your learners with a hands-free, guided learning experience from lesson to lesson.

Our initial release supported videos hosted on your WordPress site, YouTube, and Vimeo. After reviewing your feedback we soon added support for Amazon S3 and Wistia. We may add more but so far have found that these platforms are what the majority of you all use.

Here is something that you may not know: this update is actually a preparation item for something exciting we have in store for LearnDash 3.0 (scheduled for next year).

#1: LearnDash Course Builder

At the risk of stating the obvious, the LearnDash Course Builder was the #1 update of 2017. The update itself took us nearly six months to develop and test. It was essentially a complete re-write of our course creation and reporting logic. There was so much at stake, especially with regards to reporting. But while it was a tough journey, it has certainly proved to be well worth it!

As many of you have said it is a game-changer in the WordPress LMS space. Using lessons, topics, and even quizzes across multiple courses without having to create copies or clones wasn’t possible before this update. Gone are the days of content clutter. You can spin-up courses with ease and speed!

We are pleased with how smoothly this update went. Making big changes is always somewhat scary. It is why we did a ton of testing. It paid off as we haven’t had any major issues reported.

Now that the infrastructure is in place, we are finding ways we can incorporate this new building philosophy in other parts of LearnDash. Stay tuned! 😉

Looking Ahead to 2018

I first want to thank all of you who have trusted LearnDash to run your learning programs, and to those of you who provide recommendations and suggestions on functionality. You have helped shape LearnDash LMS to what it is today!

Over the course of 2017 we have rolled out 15 updates to our core, three for ProPanel, and numerous others across our various add-ons.

This year has set us up nicely for some of the major developments we have in place for 2018. If you thought this year was a big one then you will be in for quite the surprise!

Author

Justin Ferriman is the co-founder and CEO of LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses.

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