Ah, a relatively common question for us… People come to us asking for recommendations on content and LMS’s with some regularity. I theorize that it’s for one of two reasons…

  1. They think we’re the governing body for SCORM.
  2. They know we aren’t the governing body, but that we have expertise in the subject and have seen a bunch of LMS’s.

To the first group… Sorry, that’s not us. ADL is the governing body for SCORM at this point. They’ve shepherded it to this point and have stood up the Co-Labs and still manage the evolution of SCORM 2004. For what it’s worth, they wouldn’t be able to provide this sort of guidance either.

To the second group… you’re right, we’ve seen a bunch of content and LMS’s. On certain topics, we might even have useful insight for you. Our problem is this: we want no part of a conflict of interest. If we were to recommend an LMS, we would be choosing amongst our customers and our prospective customers. Each of my daughters does certain things better than her sisters, but I don’t choose one of them to love more either. It just wouldn’t be right.

So, we’ve elected to remain agnostic on the subject. I don’t have a favorite LMS… in truth, I know a limited amount about each of them… our purview is really limited to the SCORM aspects of these systems.

If you are looking for an LMS, though, I would say this. Make absolutely certain that it is SCORM conformant, and not just a little bit. Lip service simply isn’t enough to prove that a system really is conformant. I would look for further indication. Ask your sales person to import a course or two that you provide. Challenge the LMS provider on which versions of SCORM they support. If that vendor indicates they support some SCORM elements, but not all of them, ask them if they’re crazy… [This topic, partial SCORM support, is a hot button for me. I promise I’ll write about it another time. In fact, in an homage to Alton Brown’s frequent “that’s another show” references, I will begin tagging posts like this as “that’s another post”. None of you will find that tag particularly useful, but I certainly will when I need some new material.]

There are bunches of good LMS’s out there. Many of them have great SCORM support. A good portion of those do so by implementing the SCORM Engine, and I’m more than happy to tell you if that potential LMS purchase is one of them.

Tim is the chief innovation and product officer with our parent company LTG, though he used to be CEO here at Rustici Software. If you’re looking for a plainspoken answer to a standards-based question, or to just play an inane game, Tim is your person.