WordPress LMS

Woothemes.com is releasing a WordPress LMS known as Sensei in January 2013 and if it is anything like the simplicity of their WordPress Shopping Cart Woocommerce, it will be a winner.

If I were a betting man (which I am!), I’d put my chips on the table for this one.  The developers at Woothemes.com know their stuff when it comes to simplifying.  I’ve seen it first hand when they took the complexity of e-commerce shopping carts (which if you used Magento you would know what I mean) and simplified it into an intuitive interface that integrates with the most widely used content management system and blogging platform- WordPress.

 

lms4 Wordpress LMS

So what to expect?

  • Easy installation (as easy as installing WordPress and a theme)
  • Minimal server requirements (unless you plan on a big scale project)
  • Integration with Woocommerce (to take payments for online courses)
  • Deep integration with existing Woothemes.com themes and compatibility with other WordPress themes.
  • Simple interface for adding courses, quizzes, discussions.
  • Social media integration and WordPress rich interfaces.
  • An open marketplace where developers can write LMS extensions for this platform.
  • Issues, fixes, and many updates.
  • Good usage for smaller scale projects (at least initially)

What not to expect out of the gate:

  • SCORM support (it’s been well documented that this will not be happening in the early versions of Sensei WordPress LMS)
  • Large scale compatibility (Don’t expect to convince your school or organization that it’s time to ditch your existing LMS for this.  It’s going to take time before the grease is on the wheels and the bugs are worked out so that scalability can be reliable).
  • Compatibility with ERP systems (Most LMS systems have some compatibility with ERP systems that allow their LMS’s to communicate to the organizations Human Resources systems or in the case of education- an Admissions/Records Office) This I think will come soon in the form of an extension.

It’s something to be excited about.  If you look at Woothemes.com’s track record – it’s been good and solid.  When Woocommerce was opened up to the marketplace for developers to create extensions – it made Woocommerce that much more viable and it moved the product forward. The same I suspect will happen with the Sensei WordPress LMS.

Your comments? Thoughts?

5 Responses to “WordPress LMS”

  1. Tim Nash January 29, 2013 at 10:15 am // Reply

    While I don’t think Sensei is a game changer on its own, when you combine it with plugins like Your Members it makes a great foundation for building members only courses. To that end we built a dedicated integration for Your Members and Sensei which we are calling Dai-Sensei (great teacher) If you are interested you can find out more:

    http://blog.yourmembers.co.uk/2013/woothemes-sensei-integration/

    Disclaimer, I work for Your Members if it wasn’t already obvious!

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  2. Tim January 29, 2013 at 9:17 pm // Reply

    Hi Mr. Nash,

    The same can be achieved by using Justin Tadlock’s Member plugin. http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/members/

    It’s free, well tested and will work well with setting up roles for Sensei or any WordPress LMS.

    Thanks for your post.

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  3. Tim Nash January 29, 2013 at 9:45 pm // Reply

    Justin plugin is great for basic community features but its not a full membership solution and while it will work with Sensei it doesn’t have a custom integration to maximise Sensei features.

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  4. Tim January 29, 2013 at 10:53 pm // Reply

    I see. Well good luck with your plugin. I suspect Woothemes.com will be opening up a Sensei extensions marketplace soon if they haven’t already.

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  5. Tim Nash January 30, 2013 at 10:41 am // Reply

    We have been around for 5 years and I suspect we still be here long after Sensei is gone but will take all the luck we can get :)

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