WalkMe for LMS

Using WalkMe for LMS (learning management systems) enhancement is pretty much like using milk to enhance cookies. Despite them being separate things in origin both in time and place, they just seem inarguably made for each other nonetheless. Well, at least it seems that way once you try it. You wonder how you got on without coupling these technologies together previously.

But, what does using WalkMe for LMS enhancement actually accomplish, oh skeptical readers? That leaves me with quite a bit to say, so let me get right down to it, first by addressing what WalkMe is at its heart.

For those who don’t know WalkMe is a tutorial creation program designed with web interfaces and SaaS in mind. Powered by AJAX and HTML5, it provides a rich, interactive interface within browsers that can do a lot of very cool things. The biggest feature, and one of its first, is a guidance system.

This guidance system basically can highlight various web elements in a specific order, with customized notification balloons and a strong level of control over the host interface. Through this, it can be scripted to watch the user’s progress through any given digital interface, and stop them, prompt them for the next step, and continue. This is set up remarkably easy, with a point and click design and scripting system that doesn’t require any programming experience or knowledge, only a good sense of the intrinsic logic needed.

It can do more than this, if you’re slick with it, even automating lengthy, complex processes in forms, learning user patterns to report issues or to grade progress of training, any number of things of this sort. With its level of control, it can hold a user’s hand through using the actual software they are learning, without the danger of disastrous amateur mistakes, permitting learning by doing where it once could not be done.

All of that is great, but how does this enhance any given LMS? Well, given that first of all, most competent LMS designs are SaaS-based, making them web interfaces, that means WalkMe can easily couple with them. In fact, it has plugins for one of the best of these, Moodle.

So, what do you get out of this integration? Well, in truth, that depends entirely on how creative and innovative you are as a teacher. You can go the most obvious and simple route, using WalkMe to create dynamic quizzes, exercises and tests. In fact, that’s a good idea either way, but there’s much more you can do with it.

You can use it for group projects, interactive demonstrations of software as part of courses (or heck, interactive demonstrations that visualize abstract concepts being taught as well). Really, with this kind of scriptable, smart extension easily integrated into any learning management framework, you can get just about any depth of multimedia, interactive learning experience you want, finally without the need to forsake the comforts and conveniences of a dedicated training platform like Moodle or Wikispaces or any LMS of your choosing.

But, the one use of WalkMe for LMS enhancement that I think will win you over immediately (though the others will keep you hooked), is the fact that WalkMe can teach the students and teachers how to use the LMS itself. The need to learn how to use the learning system is the paradoxical issue that the systems currently have, after all, and a quick solution to that conundrum is in itself worth a billion dollars if you ask most modern-minded educators.

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Jason Silberman
Jason is the former Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog
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