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The SIS & LMS: Why Your Institution’s Two Most Important Systems Should Communicate

By September 3, 2018 No Comments

Let’s start with the basics…

What is the difference between an SIS and an LMS?

A Student Information System (SIS) is the system that is primarily used to manage student information within a university or college. This could include information relating to basic demographics, admissions, enrollments, attendance, discipline, final grades/certifications, etc.

A Learning Management System (LMS) is the system that is primarily used for managing course resources and learning in and out of the classroom. It generally includes information on courses, enrollments, curriculum, attendance, gradebooks/grades (detailed and final), etc.

As you can see, there is some overlap in the data that is recorded in both systems. This is why it makes things much easier when both of these platforms are able to communicate and share information with one another. Thankfully, eThink specializes in real-time SIS integrations with the Moodle LMS, allowing for the seamless transfer of data between your institution’s two most important systems.

What are the advantages of this LMS integration, you ask?

Avoid duplicate data entry

If designed and set up properly, the duplication efforts can be minimized if not avoided entirely. Instead of having to manually enter information from one system into another, this process can be automated, saving teachers and administrators valuable time with this workflow improvement. eThink’s custom Moodle integration does just that by eliminating the need to enter the data into both the SIS and the LMS.

Through an LMS integration, the two systems are enabled to share information that will allow courses and enrollments to be created in the LMS without manual intervention, eliminating the need to enter courses and enrollments manually into both the SIS and then the LMS.

Once set up and configured, the integration can handle course creation, course adds/drops, instructor changes, etc. This integration also provides the ability to send certain data, like attendance and midterm/final grades, back to the SIS.

Eliminate wait time

Integrating the LMS and SIS means there is less wait time between when a student finishes the admission process and when they can access their courses. Although the custom integration does have an overnight process that will sync data between the SIS and the LMS, it also can be configured to sync courses and enrollments on a per user basis the moment a user logs into the LMS.

For example, if Sam just went to the registrar’s office to drop his onsite course and add the online version, he does not have to wait until tomorrow to access the course curriculum as he can immediately log into Moodle and the integration will update with his new enrollment information. Any remaining data that has not been synced immediately by a user logging in will be updated in the next overnight sync process.

Always have the most current data

Instructors can take unexpected leave and need to be replaced on a course. Scheduling conflicts might require courses to be combined. Students can change majors and need an update to their course selections. There are numerous reasons why information in the SIS will need to be updated and this information needs to make its way into the LMS.

When the SIS and LMS communicate, this data can be shared instantaneously, making managing changes to student, faculty, or course information that much easier.

All in all, enabling a real-time integration between your Student Information System and Learning Management System simply makes the transfer of data within your institution more efficient and who doesn’t love efficiency!

Interested in learning more about eThink’s SIS integration?

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