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Graphy

Graphy (formerly Spayee) is an eLearning solution, which helps creators create and sell online courses by launching websites, mobile applications and video platforms. Graphy provides you with a white-labeled course website and m...Read more about Graphy

4.7 (155 reviews)

33 recommendations

Thinkific

Thinkific is a versatile and comprehensive online course platform designed for entrepreneurs and educators. It excels in offering an array of features for course creation, marketing, and sales. Users can build personalized, brande...Read more about Thinkific

4.4 (180 reviews)

21 recommendations

TalentLMS

TalentLMS is the LMS built for training success. Designed to get a yes from everyone, its where great teams, and companies, go to grow. With an experience thats fully customizable and easy to manage, teams embrace training while f...Read more about TalentLMS

4.7 (536 reviews)

17 recommendations

Docebo

The Docebo Learning Platform is designed to be intuitive for admins, engaging for learners, and transformative for businesses. With Docebo, organizations can deliver personalized learning experiences to multiple audiences, includ...Read more about Docebo

4.3 (194 reviews)

16 recommendations

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Tovuti

Designed as a people-centric LMS, Tovuti makes learning fun and management simple – boosting productivity for users and admins alike. Generate courses in seconds with AI. Increase learner engagement with interactive videos, memory...Read more about Tovuti

4.8 (98 reviews)

16 recommendations

Brightspace

D2L, the leading learning experience platform for companies and education, we help organizations around the world create experience-rich learning programs and drive business outcomes through learning. D2L has been delivering high-...Read more about Brightspace

4.3 (213 reviews)

4 recommendations

Paradiso LMS

Paradiso LMS from Paradiso Solutions is a learning management solution that helps corporations and educational facilities train their staff and students. The Paradiso Learning Management System provides multiple integrations with...Read more about Paradiso LMS

4.2 (10 reviews)

1 recommendations

GoTo Meeting

An industry leader in online video conferencing for companies around the world, GoTo Meeting now comes as part of GoTo Connect, the all-in-one communications software built for SMBs. The Meeting solution, available to buy standalo...Read more about GoTo Meeting

CANVAS

Canvas by Instructure is a cloud-based learning management system for every stage and style of education. Available to institutions of all sizes and types, from individual K-12 classrooms to universities to Training Organisations ...Read more about CANVAS

Moodle

Moodle is an open source, feature-rich, secure and scalable learning management system that integrates seamlessly with other platforms and can be customised for any teaching or training method you choose. With fresh and intuiti...Read more about Moodle

Google Classroom

Google Classroom is a cloud-based learning management system that is a part of Google Apps for Education. It is suitable for academic institutions only. Google Classroom enable students to access the platform from computers, ...Read more about Google Classroom

GoTo Webinar

As an online webinar solution that powers millions of webinars each year, GoTo Webinar now comes as part of GoTo Connect, an all-in-one communications software built for SMBs. GoTo Webinar offers scheduling, engagement and publis...Read more about GoTo Webinar

Zoho Meeting

Zoho Meeting is an online video conferencing solution suitable for single users as well as small to large-sized organizations. The solution can be used to host product launches, sales presentations, webinars, user education and on...Read more about Zoho Meeting

Adobe Connect

Adobe Connect is a web conferencing software solution used by companies for conducting online meetings, webinars and training sessions. The solution is for adhoc collaboration as well as planned online meetings. The solution enabl...Read more about Adobe Connect

Blackboard Learn

Help learners, instructors and institutions achieve their goals with Blackboard Learn by Anthology, a market-leading Learning Management System (LMS). Blackboard Learn runs from course development to assessments and integrates wit...Read more about Blackboard Learn

Blackboard Collaborate

Blackboard Collaborate is an online collaborative learning solution designed primarily for elementary and high schools, higher education and government facilities. Blackboard Collaborate offers a browser-based web conferencin...Read more about Blackboard Collaborate

Ventture

Ventture is a membership management software, which helps professional trainers build websites and offer online courses to members in a unified interface. The solution allows teams to create and edit content, attach files to the c...Read more about Ventture

BrainCert

Enterprise LMS and Training Software Solution With more than 8 years of experience in catering to the diverse requirements of the eLearning industry, we place ourselves before the eLearning industry as a comprehensive eLearning s...Read more about BrainCert

Remo

Remo is a cloud-based conferencing platform designed to help businesses create a virtual workspace for remote and distributed teams and organize video calls. Features include team collaboration, whiteboarding, email reminders, scr...Read more about Remo

Teachable

Teachable is a cloud-based learning management solution used by small and midsize businesses. The solution allows users to create and share online courses by adding audio, video, images, text and PDF files. Students can access the...Read more about Teachable

Buyers Guide

Last Updated: November 21, 2023

Distance learning courses are a long-established tradition in education and training. Indeed, the University of London established its international program in 1858, making it the world’s oldest provider of distance and flexible learning.

Even so, seemingly unavoidable disadvantages have typically resulted in lower completion rates for distance learning than for in-person classes. Until the 21st century, there was no way to avoid the lack of direct interaction between student and teacher or the demoralizing effects of student isolation. Today, however, software has made it possible for distance learning to be conducted in real time and with a much more personal quality.

This guide will help prospective buyers learn more about virtual classroom software. In it, we’ll cover:

What is virtual classroom software?

Common features of virtual classroom software

Benefits of virtual classroom software

What type of buyer are you?

Recent developments you should know about

What is virtual classroom software?

Virtual classroom technology is part of the broader learning management (LMS) software category. It provides individuals and organizations with conferencing and collaboration capabilities necessary for virtual training or online learning. As a result, instructors can directly interact with learners anywhere in the world with an Internet connection, while maximizing both time and location flexibility.

Common features of virtual classroom software

Virtual classroom software can be used by educators as well as trainers at organizations with a large geographical reach, in order to bring the learning experience to students wherever they are located while reducing travel costs to zero. Buyers should expect to find the following functionality in their new system:

Audio-video streaming

Instructors can interact directly, in real time, with groups of learners or individuals via streaming audio and video.

Interactive whiteboard

Virtual whiteboards allow instructors to share information with students, and include the ability to add real-time annotations, text and highlighting. Learners can also be given access, so they can share their video stream or desktop with the class.

Chat

Learners and instructors can interact via personal or group chat, rather than sit passively listening to lectures. Questions can be addressed directly in real time, and instructors can conduct quick tests.

Recording

Instructors can record classes for playback by absent students. They can also use the audio-video recording functionality to prepare introductions to lessons.

Breakout rooms

Instructors can break classes into smaller groups via virtual breakout rooms, where learners can collaborate to solve problems. Breakout rooms have their own chat, virtual whiteboard, and document-sharing capabilities.

Media streaming

Enables instructors to play audio/video files using a built-in media player.

Attendance reporting

Instructors can monitor attendance and send out notifications about upcoming classes to learners.

Polling

Enables instructors to conduct quizzes and surveys during class, then assess learner comprehension by viewing the results in chart form.

File and screen sharing

Instructors can share their desktop as well as multiple file types (PDFs, Word documents, etc.) with learners during class.

Benefits of virtual classroom software

Organizations that use a virtual classroom solution are able to:

  • Provide students with the flexibility of following and completing courses at their own pace.

  • Deliver education and training to students who are currently employed or whose scheduling commitments prevent them from attending in-person classes.

  • Expand the reach of their education to anywhere on the globe—so long as students have access to the Internet, they can attend an online class.

  • Reduce travel costs for instructors and learners to zero.

What type of buyer are you?

Virtual classroom technology can be used by individual tutors and organizations alike. Although marketing materials are often aimed at educational institutions, any organization with a large and dispersed workforce can benefit from using this technology for internal new-hire and personal development courses, as it eliminates the need for employees to travel for training.

That said, some solutions do cater specifically to higher or secondary ed, while others predominantly serve the corporate world. Meanwhile, some vendors offer different, specialized products for different types of buyers, while some products can be leveraged equally effectively by any type of organization.

What's most important when choosing a virtual classroom tool is finding a product with the features and functionality you need, regardless of the type of buyer it's marketed to most heavily.

Recent developments you should know about

Although some instructors still harbor doubts about remote learning and virtual classroom tools, they are becoming increasingly commonplace due to the many benefits they offer. Indeed, prestigious educational organizations are now using these tools.

For example, in August 2015, Harvard Business School demonstrated its confidence in virtual classroom technology by launching HBX Live: a virtual classroom capable of “seating” 60 students simultaneously. With this, students from around the world are able to log in and interact directly with faculty members teaching courses. Participants are displayed on individual screens, replicating the effect of sitting in a traditional classroom, while others can "audit" classes via an observer model.