Content management governance policies
Content can be defined as the core of an LMS or, in simpler terms, it is the product (learning) through which users access the Learning Management System. There are different types of content, such as eLearning, videos, PDFs, Word documents, presentations, brainstorming, webinars, podcasts, case studies, simulations, and instructor-led trainings.
Managing content effectively is extremely essential as it provides multiple benefits for the organization and users (managers, instructors, administrators, and students). The highlights of having an efficient governance mechanism for content management are detailed below:
- Improved user experience: easy to use catalog, search and access to content
- Learning Management Settings – Ensures effective content delivery
- Facilitates monitoring and reporting (i.e. timely and accurate information)
- Easier access and more efficient administration.
The following section discusses the key governance policies for "content" within an LMS in 4 key areas: naming conventions, content creation template, business assessment and curriculum, source code repository, and auditing.
1. Naming conventions
For any content management system within an organization, consistency of naming conventions is central. Naming standards must be defined and documented for business implementation. Adhering to clear naming conventions, structure, and standards ensures that learning objects, various types of courses, and materials are easily and efficiently identified as it will provide consistent access to the correct materials and courses for students.
It should be understood that developing a company-wide naming convention for use within an LMS requires a shared acceptance and commitment from business stakeholders, who drive the creation of learning content, as well as the administrator, manager and LMS administrator others.
Best practice within the naming convention involves having a descriptive and user-friendly title; It is recommended to avoid abbreviations, symbols and acronyms. Each "learning content" must have version history, date, an audience for which it was created, and the owner of the content. In summary, content should follow a uniform naming pattern across the organization with the inclusion of business units.
2. Content creation template
The consistency of the metadata fields, which affects student search and reporting, must be provided by business units requesting the creation of training content so that we can have an optimized search and a well-maintained catalog. Creating a consistent content creation template is recommended and should be accessible across the enterprise.
The course creation template can be a web form so that stakeholders can provide all the necessary details of the learning content required in the LMS and the learning catalog. The content creation template should have the following fields captured: title, description, duration, business domain, learning audience availability, course owner, business owner, course code, notification details, keywords, vendor / vendor , test or evaluation and commercial approval.
The process for making a course available to students must go through several stages:
- Business unit requesting the course
- Business unit completing the course creation template
- Administrative learning team that receives and reviews the application
- Learning management team that validates course content in a quality control environment
- Administrative learning team that asks the business owner to validate the course in quality control and give their approval
- Business owner who validates and provides approval
- The administrative learning team loads the content into production and makes it available to students
In summary, a well-defined content creation template will support searching, accessing, controlling consumption and reporting information about each learning object / course.
3. Study plan and business evaluation
In general, users are required to take a combination of courses, apprenticeships, and trainings to become certified; These become the business study plans for an organization. When defining governance around the business curriculum, it is essential to include and document all learning objects, prerequisites, post-requisites, equivalences, the time period to complete, expiration and renewal dates, business rules, credits, notifications, public availability, and providers.
Business units must create a request to the learning management team to build these business curricula and must go through the validation process on QA business approvals before moving on to the production environment.
Any learning must have an evaluation process to measure the effectiveness and impact of the training material. Governance needs to be established to measure how learners received the training as it can be used to improve content, venue, presentation and material for future events and training.
In summary, when it comes to online learning, we must assess the value of the training content and the impact on students; And, if it is instructor led, then we must focus on the value of the training content, the impact on the students, the presentation of the instructors and the quality of the venue.
4. Source code repository and audit
There should be a central repository for a learning source file, as well as the completed "gold" packages. This will decrease the risk of data loss and content integrity, as well as provide a well-preserved and curated content library.
With a central repository, business stakeholders are protected from loss of data and content if a personal computer or share becomes inaccessible. This lowers the risk and also provides competent access for legal requests in case of litigation.
Once the course is in production, it is important that business stakeholders and content owners edit and review its content annually or periodically. The audit review process becomes imperative as it affects the integrity of the content. Governance must be established in the frequency of the audit process. Remove any content that is outdated and no longer needs to be available to students after utilization review / content access.
In summary, a well-defined audit process will ensure version control, removal, and a clean content repository along with the golden copy of the content.
Content within an LMS is not only the responsibility of content developers or creators, it is also the responsibility of the learning administrative team, business stakeholders, managers, and evaluators as government policies revolve around everyone. ; everyone in the learning chain must take steps for well-defined operational content management within a Learning Management System. In summary, governance around content begins with content name and ends with content audit, as the palindrome word "civic" begins with a C and ends with C; It's about content.