“Following on from the recent article in Skills Portal regarding what is an LMS – Learner Management System and what is the difference between that and an LCMS we had a number of people who came back to us to ask what other initials stood for’ says David Meredith from Virtual-IT.

So we took the top four requested initials and decided to look into them and give a brief overview of what they stood for.

One of the top enquiries was “what is a BPM?? – well the initials stand for “Business Process Management’ and, I suppose there is an interest in them as a number of authors have suggested that there is a similarity between Business Process Management, and Electronic Learning or e-Learning.

There are those that submit that BPM?s link such things as technology, design and ideas with a view to increasing efficiency in a similar way that eLearning depends on Learning Management Software – LMS.

In essence Business Process Management is a methodology whereby management concentrates on organising all of the features that comprise their enterprise and linking those features with the demands and requirements of their customer base.

It is an all-inclusive tactic, focused on the corporation being effective and efficient at the same time as aiming to encourage improvement of ideas, whilst incorporating technology and being as flexible as possible within the frame work of the business focus.

PLE?s or Personal Learning Environments are structures that give learners the control and management of their own learning needs. These structures could include support for learners to;

  • fix their own learning objectives
  • manage their learning with control over the content and process
  • communicate with other learners and mentors in the process of learning thereby achieving their own learning goals by controlling their approach themselves.

On the other hand Personal Learning Networks comprises of associates that a learner works or interacts with and the knowledge gained within that community in a Personal Learning Environment.

Learners develop networks and build a grid of associates that contribute to the development of their skills and knowledge.

With the advent of social networks the learner does not have to even know the people in their network personally or ever have to meet them in person.

Also with access to the internet becoming easier, we have massive amounts of information at our fingertips these days which we can share with members of our network no matter their location or circumstances.

A Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is a system intended for maintaining, facilitating and learning in an educational environment, as opposed to Managed Learning Environment, (MLE) where the emphasis is on management.

VLE?s will usually be found working over the web and make available systems or functions such as those for assessment, mediums to host content, a conduit for the submission learners work, communication learner surveys, administration of learner clusters, measuring tools, gathering and consolidating learner assessments etc.

In today?s world VLE?s makes use of such facilities as RSS, wikis and blogs and when you realise that if Facebook was a country its “population’ would put it in the top three countries in the world ( based on population numbers) then the potential power of social networks is enormous.

If you would like any further information please contact our offices at info@virtual-it.co.za



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