Monday, April 19, 2010

How to Socialize Your Learning Management System with Lotus Connections

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When I first joined IBM 8 years ago, I was a developer for the IBM Lotus Learning Management System (LMS). As part of IBM's Workplace strategy, the product matured into IBM Workplace Collaborative Learning. Shortly thereafter, I left the development division of IBM and became a consultant. At that point most of my customer engagements where about planning, architecting, designing, deploying and integrating our LMS product with our customers' enterprise applications.

Then Lotus Connections showed up. Initially, I started looking for ways in which we could integrate LMS with Lotus Connections to create Social Learning. At the time, I believed ( and I still do ) that our LMS product is great for formal training. Lotus Connections on the other hand, is fantastic for informal learning. I thought: "what if we could integrate both to create Social Learning?".

I quickly made a list of all the integration points I thought would be valuable. Today, IBM is reselling the Saba Learning System, so you could consider this a "how to integrate Saba with Lotus Connections" list:

  • Add the person card to wherever a name shows up in Saba
  • Add 'My Courses' as a widget in the Lotus Connections Profiles
  • Add 'Courses I'm Taking' as a widget in the Lotus Connections Profiles
  • Add 'Courses I Want to Take' as a widget in the Lotus Connections Profiles
  • Add 'Recommended Courses' as a widget in the Lotus Connections Profiles
  • Attach one course to a community so users have a place to interact and talk to each other
  • Add 'tag this' capability (via Dogear) to LMS so students can tag pages/courses in Saba
  • Use Lotus Connections to generate a list of 'Related Courses' (based on tags) while browsing Saba courses

Enjoy!

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