LMS + Facebook = Social LMS?

I was toying with the idea of a mash up platform of a LMS and Social Network like Facebook.

The reason: Create a best of both world system for students to learn and play. The school LMS and Facebook are two of the top websites students visit everyday, however for different purposes. The LMS is somehow controlled, structured, formal and disengaging to a certain extent. While the latter, addictive, fun, informal and engaging. I guess it would be interesting to have a one-stop system to create a self-directed and collaborative learning environment.

Ning comes pretty close.  Sclipo looks interesting.

What do you guys think?



  1. ashleytan

    Mashing up those polar opposites is going to be quite a challenge. LMS are designed for control and are generally fenced up. Social networks are designed for interaction and are generally open.

    So here are my thoughts: It is easier to put restrictions on an open space than to open up a tightly closed space. In other words, take the social networking route. Also consider why Martin Weller of Open University UK said that LMS was dead (http://nogoodreason.typepad.co.uk/no_good_reason/2007/11/the-vlelms-is-d.html).

    A social network also opens students up to audiences beyond their perceived boundaries. They can interact with experts and learners in other countries, and with guidance, learn to be technologically, socially and information literate.

    Just my two cents, with GST. 🙂

  2. Jeremy Friedman

    I enjoyed your post. My company, Schoology, has developed a platform that I believe addresses the themes you mention.

    Ashleytan is entirely correct that you often run into difficulties trying to open up an LMS. Unlike traditional systems, we first built a social network and then incorporated the essential course management features. Feel free to check out our site (www.schoology.com).

    If you ever want to chat, my email is listed on our website.

  3. tucksoon

    Hi Dr Ashley,

    Thanks for your recommendations. One trend I noticed with my upper primary pupils is their gradual lost of interest in the school LMS. Hence I have been thinking of ways to rekindle their interest. Social network comes to my mind almost immediately.

    I also heard of cLc (Connected Learning Communities) by SingTel and UniServity. The platform looks very promising. However the cost per child is not very affordable.

    Link: http://bit.ly/3r0Xt3

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