Regarding the pandemic situation, stationary education became difficult in any educational facility and any industry. Medical education differs from other faculties by its lack of opportunities to miss classes or skip the topic. The healthcare industry demands the highest quality of teaching and knowledge for future or current doctors. That’s why most medical facilities turned to online learning for their workers or students. There is a wide range of ready-made platforms that can be customized according to a particular course or establishment’s needs. However, many establishments are used by these platforms, and they can not cover all the required issues. The common problems that appear during online learning are:
- absence of a single database for students documents and all courses;
- there is no opportunity to gather students for practical pieces of training or lectures in the classroom, and it makes the studying process harder;
- poor knowledge verification;
- ready-made solutions are expensive for a vast number of medical workers or students.
Main features of Learning Management Systems
Learning management systems (LMS) have a basic range of features that are necessary for each e-learning platform. These platforms should be accessible for all members, simple to use, and suit the latest tech updates. Looking at the Capterra statistics below, you can see which healthcare facilities implement custom LMSs.
Medical, educational platforms differ a lot from simple educational services for schools or universities. Healthcare training is more complicated and has a comprehensive structure containing a lot of diverse modules and tests. Usually, the entire course is divided into several parts for qualifying the information. The topics’ logical organization creates a learning path that can contain learning videos and compendiums, a combination of several courses, quizzes, and tests to check the knowledge. Each module also has deadlines and specific criteria for marks. After finishing the learning path, students usually get certificates to prove their qualifications.
Due to the pandemic situation worldwide, webinars have become the most popular way of e-learning for many industries, and healthcare is not an exception. Even before the quarantine, the practice of hosting webinars for studying medical workers was successful. This type of e-learning is flexible and available to everyone. Students can listen and share videos, pictures, or presentations in real-time, interact with a tutor, and ask questions if something is unclear. If the future doctors can not attend a particular lecture, they can watch it on the record. 🔎E-LEARNINGCheck more articles about e-learning and the digital era of education on our blog.
Reporting and analytics
E-learning platforms not only provide online courses for employees but also track their attendance and progress. It is essential to know the level of competencies of the medical workers. LMS provides custom reports and analysis for each course participant. Usually, reports contain valuable information like:
- activities of all participants – their performance, grades, and tests completions; it also tracks time spent on learning and doing tests, the level of qualification, and the deadlines for finishing the course;
- availability of certificates and tracking compliance requirements;
- satisfaction with course – this option helps to improve or change the course or the learning system in case of need.
Flexibility in the learning process is not a wish but a noticeable feature. Medical students have the most complex and stressful studying program among all other faculties. Due to e-learning systems, the educational process can be flexible and available for everyone. Each student or employee can independently choose the time for learning and create their schedules. It is also an excellent option to synchronize the course with the web platform and accessible from any devices like tablets or smartphones. Moreover, such a feature can attract and involve students more as it is flexible and convenient to do some tests anywhere.
As the number of students for one system can be vast, a cloud-based solution is the best choice for developing a healthcare e-learning platform. It makes access more effortless as all users have to do is type the address in the browser. Cloud deployment also simplifies the process of system improvements and maintenance.
Healthcare e-learning is not just a simple language course. Medical learning platforms have to be highly qualified and professional systems that give the same knowledge level as a class studying. To make all these systems unified, there is a range of standards that should be considered during the development and implementation of such a platform.
- SCORM or Sharable Content Object Reference Model includes the range of technical requirement for e-learning platforms; it is a guide for developers on how to integrate a new system with the existing ones;
- xAPI – it helps to unite all information that will be available on the course and make it accessible for all users; it also provides sharing the data between different systems;
- LTI or Learning Tools Interoperability is an educational technology developed by the IMS Global Learning Consortium; it lets users host the course tools and content from external systems or websites.
Medical education is impossible without practice, so it means that online platforms for the healthcare industry are not enough. Some courses need offline learning, and Learning management systems has to support blended learning.Performance Management
The main aim of online continuing medical education is to keep a high level of studying performance and knowledge. The rank of management is beneficial for tutors and professionals who teach medical students or employees. LMS provides a set of needed features for the entire medical facility like:
- insert data for documentation for state officials;
- assigning additional training for employees with low qualification;
- automatic tracking the assessments.
Game elements are implemented to increase the motivation of students. It can be virtual awards and badges for completing the tests or course. Gamification shows the positive results in LMS as it involves the students more, and the learning process can bring more enjoyment as students have to complete the task to get a reward.
Why do you need to implement custom LMS?
The most compelling variant of implementing e-learning service is developing custom Learning Management Systems considering particular medical facilities’ needs. LMS or Learning Management System makes all learning, testing, and grading processes easier, accessible, and productive. It replaces the real-time educational process and provides the same level of quality of studying.
Custom LMS contains the range of functions that are obvious for your medical facility and fit its rank. All medical courses have to follow the standards of studying that we have counted above, but the content and information interpretation methods can differ. For example, each part of the information can be provided in diverse interactive ways to make it easier to learn and remember:
- text, video, and audio-based seminars;
- learning games;
- availability of online discussion and forums;
- different types of final tests or quizzes;
- availability of sharing the info between students and tutors.
Many medical centers want to turn their offline training online. The custom solution accurately matches all requirements with no excess functions for an e-learning platform. It also easily can be synchronized with other internal systems in a less expensive way and include as many users as it is needed.
Victoria – Sales manager
Basic functionality for custom LMS
When you come up with the development of a custom Learning Management Systems, it is vital to reveal the weak sides of the existing learning system or accurately define the main objectives for a new solution for your medical facility. Each LMS contains a standard set of critical features. However, along with the required options, you can add any function you think is needed for your custom solution.
We want to bring to your attention the basic functionality for the development of LMS.
This function lets you set the responsible persons for definite courses or organizational tasks. Administrators usually have full access to all data and can add course information, change or delete it. They also create and add quizzes for each course, set hours and deadlines, upload required video, audio, or text documents for the learning process.
Range of courses
Each LMS provides a full cycle of education for different groups of medical workers or medical students. It consists of a fundamental and obligator program that has to be completed by each student. The programs usually contain several main courses with a final test for every course. You can also put additional courses that all workers or students should complete during the year.
As admins are responsible for the flow of the educational process, they have to provide reports for the headers of each student’s medical facilities and certificates for governmental establishment. The number of medical workers can reach several thousand. Is it possible to handle all the data manually? The answer is clear – no. The probability of mistakes and mix-ups is huge, but admins have no right to errors in documents and certificates.
Learning Management Systems generates custom reports and certificates automatically and accurately for each course or student.
Absence of skipping
This function is critical for healthcare e-learning systems. The students have to go through all learning stages, watch all videos, read all documents, and listen to all lectures or seminars. There should be no availability to skip any part of the course, including tests or quizzes in the end.
Healthcare educational programs contain a lot of specific terms and titles. It is essential to make e-learning available for all students and workers and the process as simple as possible. The multi-language function is required to make the learning process highly qualified and clear for all participants.
All medical students and workers who complete a definite course need to be notified about any updates or changes like test results, grades, upcoming lectures, or quizzes. Due to many people, the notifications should be set and sent automatically via email or internal system between medical workers.
How to develop a custom LMS?
The development of custom solutions has a stable workflow and main stages. Among them, we would like to define:
- building a business plan considering customer`s need and aims
- writing specifications of the project
- creating the design
- writing the code
- testing the systems
- release and maintenance
For building own Learning Management Systems from scratch, you need to find and hire a dedicated team of developers with experience in developing and implementing LMSs. Each phase of development involves a particular specialist. Each stage’s time and cost depend on the set of functions required for your custom LMS, including the number of potential students, various courses, grade system, etc.
For starting developing a custom LMS, you will need a full team of DevOps to build and successfully implement the new system to the medical facility:
- Business Analyst – a key person who helps to reveal the objections that will be resolved with the solution thanks to marketing research in the industry and build the strategy of reaching the goals to boost the productivity of healthcare e-learning;
- Scrum master – a specialist, is responsible for constant communication with customers to keep them up to date on the progress of development and organization of the workflow of DevOps;
- Designer – this specialist aims to make your system interface user-friendly, creative and recognizable simultaneously;
- HTML\CSS, PHP backend – these developers are responsible for writing clean code for the solution;
- Manual QA – testing is a crucial part before the releases, as QA specialists make stress tests for the solution to reveal any error or bug during the usage.
We want to bring to your attention an MVP estimation of developing an LMS system with basic functionality mane by our team of developers. The total cost and hours for each developer can vary depending on your custom solution’s specifications and aims. The approximate total cost of development of an LMS is $53730.
We also would like to say a few words about the importance of your system maintenance.
Once you have decided to build and integrate your internal system with a custom solution, the development process doesn’t stop at the phase of release. A custom system needs constant support from developers if needed for updates, changes, or widening the platform. Our developers’ team is also available for maintaining your project after the release stage and usually picks the suitable package with different conditions for your needs.
The price depends on the number of specialists involved in your solution:
Basic – It involves a Business Analyst, a Scrum master, Backend developers, and QA. The cost is $1740 and can vary depending on the required hours of work.
Optimal – This package engages Business Analyst, Scrum master, Frontend developer and tech lead, QA specialist. The average price is $3232, and it is not fixed as it depends on the duration of work.
Advanced – This maintenance package involves the same specialists as the optimal, but it provides more hours spent on your solution and more options as a support team. The price is about $14400.
📌Why is custom LMS better than ready-made system?
Learning Management Systems should respond to all needs of your medical facility and be synched with the existing internal systems accurately. There is a huge risk that ready-made would not fit all your requirements. Moreover, custom LMS is less expensive as you invest in the development and maintenance despite the number of workers and amount of data. Ready-made solutions are not scalable and very expensive for a vast number of students.
📌How much does custom LMS cost?
We provided a detailed MVP estimation of custom LMS for medical training in our article. The average price of the development process is $53730.
📌Does the level of students` engagement stay the same?
Medical e-learning is more complicated than studying in other faculties. The educational system should convenient and accessible to all students. That’s why each medical student should have access to courses from any device and any place. there is also a need for adding game elements to studying courses to make it more involving and attractive.
All in all
The need for custom educational internal systems is urgent for most medical facilities and faculties. All of them want to achieve the same online education level as it was at the stationary variant. Ready-made healthcare e-learning can not cover all specifications of this type of education as Learning Management Systems must be accessible for each medical worker.
Supporting many users and huge amounts of data and information is a complicated and expensive task. Usually, ready-made LMSs provide learning for a small group of people and demand a month or year subscription paying for each member of a system. Instead of coping with these complexities, we recommend building and integrating your own custom LMS considering the medical facility’s specifics, its audience, directions of learning, and methods on how to reach the qualification goals with online education.