Document management systems are integral to the success of any organization that needs to share and collaborate on documents online. They play an especially important role in learning programs. Whether they are fully online or are based on in-person interaction, education systems can make use of online document management software to improve their access to vital documents. Here are some reasons why document management is becoming an important facet of eLearning.
- High Volume of Documents
Educators and learners interact with a high number of documents over the time of a course or educational period. These include curricula, forms, records, and gradebooks in addition to course materials such as lesson plans, required readings and texts, assignments, essays, and projects. This amount of documents can be burdensome and wasteful to distribute physically, and even if shared digitally by email or downloaded from a hosting site, they can be hard to manage and track without a unified system.
A document management system can make it easier for instructors to assign documents quickly and efficiently. It’s the ideal solution for dealing with a high volume of documents. It’s also a good backup for physical documents if students lose them or can’t find them.
- Assigning Permissions
A document management system is superior to other methods of sharing documents because of how permissions can be given to access documents. Instructors can share documents that they want students to view at the time when they are assigned. Being able to choose to grant view, edit, comment, and sharing permissions also gives users a variety of options for collaborating. Use view-only permissions for lessons and reading assignments, but enable editing for group assignments, surveys, and other documents that need participation.
Permissions also keep unauthorized users from accessing documents, ensuring security and privacy. When students share documents, they can do so only with their instructor so no one else can see them. Instructors can assign documents to whole classes by creating groups.
- Collaboration between students
Group assignments and projects are very important in learning, but eLearning can sometimes make it hard for students to collaborate. Classes can feel like students can only interact with the teacher and don’t communicate with other students. Document management systems can make it possible for students to work on group projects by working together on the same document. With shared editing privileges, students can contribute to the same document at the same time and add comments to communicate with one another.
- Organization of course units and different types of documents
Students and instructors need to be able to find the most relevant documents easily. Organizing documents into folders is crucial for helping students find the right document. This is important for separating materials from different courses from one another, and separating administrative forms, schedules, and other documents from learning materials. Organizing documents into folders and subfolders for each part of a course can make it easier for students to figure out where their next assignment is.
- Quick grading and feedback from teachers
When submitting an assignment through a document management system, it’s as easy as sharing the document with the instructor. They can then grade it and give feedback through comments that the student will receive immediately. They can see from the document exactly what they did wrong, improving their learning in the future. They can also see their grades and get an idea of whether they need to work harder on other assignments to make up for bad scores.
- Standardized system for teachers and administrators
When an educational institution uses the same document management solution for all of their teachers, administration becomes smoother and more efficient. Administrators can integrate new teachers and courses into the system easily, and new teachers can take over existing courses using the same materials. Administrators can monitor teachers while teachers of the same subject can share resources and communicate with each other. Having a standardized system for sharing and editing documents makes a school staff or other learning team work more effectively.
Document management is a high priority for modern learning. Both physical and online classes benefit from giving teachers and students more resources to control and manage their educational materials.