The following are highlights from the iCohere profile in the Association Learning Management Systems report.
The social media revolution has learning management system providers across the e-learning industry scrambling to incorporate more social elements into their platforms. iCohere, however, was social before social was cool.
The company’s founders, Pascal and Soren Kaplan, built the iCohere platform specifically to support collaboration-driven learning communities. Among the organizations that have embraced this approach are the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers.
Not surprisingly, given the company’s emphasis on communities of practice and learning events, the iCohere platform environment feels less like a traditional learning management system, in which the presentation of content objects is the focus, and more like a grouping of related interactions.
- The iCohere system features integrated discussion boards, chat, announcements, learner blogs, and basic social networking tools that facilitate the learning community approach.
- The system also features an integrated Web/video conferencing system with voice-over-IP (VoIP), video, desktop sharing, closed captioning, and session recording. A standard license includes an unlimited-use 200-seat room.
- The system offers basic project management capabilities that allow teams to assign tasks and subtasks along with dependencies, responsibilities, and due dates.
- The company has an embedded video player option that allows for unlimited video uploads by users (additional fee applies).
- Included free with annual subscriptions, iCohere Mobile provides users with access to almost everything in an iCohere site through a normal phone Web browser.
- Currently iCohere lacks the full-fledged testing and tracking capabilities typically associated with an LMS, but the company has assessment and evaluation enhancements planned for release in 2011.
- The iCohere system is configurable in many ways although it does not allow for the same level of extensibility or brandability as most of the other systems included in this report.
As one company representative put it, “If you are not into collaborative learning, iCohere is not the right choice for you.” Until the company introduces more robust testing and tracking, organizations more focused on delivering on-demand content will be better served by one of the other systems in this report. But if your focus is on learning events and community, iCohere should be on your list to consider.
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- General Company Information
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- Integration and Interoperability
- Standards and Guidelines
- Interface Configuration
- Internationalization and Localization
- Search and Catalogs
- Authoring, Managing, and Displaying Learning Content
- In-person, Place-based Courses
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- Support for Multiple Sites
- Collaboration and Communication Tools
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