SCD/Resources, Documentation and Downloads/Advantages of a shared LMS

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An LMS can be used either by a single institution/school or shared among many institutions/schools.

The advantages and disavantages of sharing a single LMS between more than one school are outlined below.


  • The potential number of LMS users is very large.  This means that it is possible for collaborative activities between LMS participants to scale well and reach critical mass.  This is a very significant point.  Experience shows that many online environments, forums etc need large numbers of participants to operate successfully.  For example, teachers will be able to easily share and co-construct programmes of learning for their learners.
  • Shared classes composed of learners and teachers in different schools are possible.  This promotes better learning by: encouraging professional reflection by teachers and widening the ability profile of the cohort of learners.
  • Financial benefits by sharing the cost of hosting across multiple school.
  • Teachers become part of a large community of practice of LMS users and are able to access professional development easily.
  • The expertise and workload of admiistering the LMS can be shared among a group of individuals in different schools.  This also makes the administration more resilient to change.
  • In a shared LMS, school branding is less obvious.  This is an advanatge where public access to non-quality assured teaching materials is possible.
  • Individual schools do not need to devote much administration time to operating the shared LMS.
  • The role of the learner is promoted above the identity of the institution.  This is significant in terms of 21st Century learning and personalising learning.


  • Technically more difficult to administer, bleeding edge developments are less likely to be adopted quickly
  • Schools have a shared, not sole responsibility for developing the LMS (could be an advantage)
  • Customisations to suit individual schools could be more difficult.
  • LMS is likely to be seen as a teaching space only and not part of a larger school brand (could be an advantage