If you would have asked an elearning professional a few years ago whether they considered WordPress a viable option for an online learning program they probably would have asked you: “What’s WordPress?”
I know this to be true as I asked the question back in 2012 to one of my colleagues while working on an elearning implementation. We were researching possible learning management systems and got onto the discussion of open-source options. At that time, Moodle was the most popular option in that space.
My colleague had no idea what WordPress was at the time when I mentioned it. To be fair though, there also wasn’t any WordPress LMS available either so the most likely way they would know of it would be if they had a blog.
Not long after that conversation I started a blog to talk about and explore the concept further. I discovered that there was interest and not long after began creating LearnDash.
Fast-forward to today and the WordPress LMS landscape is a lot different. I have conversations on a regular basis with elearning professionals about using WordPress (and LearnDash) for their learning programs. The introduction of Tin Can API helped to remove the handcuffs of the traditional systems, making WordPress a viable option.
Now there are bloggers, businesses, marketers, non-profits, training organizations, and universities using WordPress to deliver some pretty robust online learning programs. Education is really a use-case where WordPress can flex its muscles. It is dynamic, attractive, scaleable, and doesn’t have a steep learning curve.
WordPress Being Recognized
Sure it’s all well and good that WordPress is being used across a variety of context for online learning, but what about the elearning industry? Do they recognize it as a true LMS option?
I suppose the answer to that question is a bit subjective, yet perhaps there is some evidence of industry acceptance taking place.
Just a few days ago LearnDash was recognized as a finalist for the “Best of ELearning 2016” awards by ELearning! Magazine.
It should go without saying that we are both honored and humbled to be included. But while this news is certainly exciting for LearnDash, my personal opinion is that this is even bigger news for WordPress.
The other LMS options included on that list are well-established, traditional solutions in the learning management field. Year after year they are included on lists like this. In all my years working in the elearning field, I have never seen a WordPress solution included. Ever.
Whether LearnDash is recognized further would just be icing at the cake at this point. The really great thing about this news is that WordPress as both a CMS and LMS is being viewed by the elearning industry as a respectable solution for elearning programs.