The Evolution of Learning Platforms

ICOG - 01-Sep-2022

eLearning in Corporations

Online learning has been prevalent since the advent of the internet, but the term was mostly used in the context of college and university learning. However, in 1999, Elliot Masie, an educational technology expert used the term eLearning with regards to learning in a professional environment. 

Corporations were beginning to understand that they could go beyond their traditional training methods and take advantage of the various benefits of eLearning:


  • doesn’t cost as much
  • allows access to a vast variety of content
  • more flexibility for the learner as well as the trainer
  • does not require complicated infrastructure to set up

The Advent of Learning Platforms

The title of the first extensive computer-based learning platform can be awarded to PLATO (Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations). It was created at the University of Illinois in 1960, and provided students access to 15,000 hours of course materials from their computer lab. 

This paved the way forward which has led to the creation of the robust and comprehensive learning platforms we see today. In the early 2000s, these platforms were called LMS (Learning Management Systems) and many platforms still continue to identify themselves as such. In fact, the first real LMS, FirstClass which was released by SoftArc in 1990, is still in use.  

However, about a decade ago, the term LXP (Learning Experience Platform) came about to describe a new category of platforms. These terms are sometimes used interchangeably but that would be incorrect to do so. While the terms themselves explain how they may differ, one focusing on management while the other on experience, there are a few distinct differences between the two.





For organizations to administer training

For employees to self-select content

Provides learning in a confined, defined environment with selected courses

Provides open-ended discovery learning with access to external content libraries

Focuses on administration, assessment, certification, control

Focuses on content creation, flexibility, personalization, variety of content

Designed to guide employees in a linear learning path

Learning is collaborative and social in nature

To summarize, an LMS helps an organization ensure compliance and assess employee performance in designated courses. An LXP focuses on employees improving their skills and learning content in areas of their own interest while providing the organization with insights on the same.


Next generation of learning

It should come as no surprise that LXPs are not the end of the road in the evolution of learning platforms. We would like to introduce the next generation of learning platforms, what we like to call Learning Transformation Platforms. A learning transformation platform (LTP) combines the benefits of the traditional LMS with the capabilities and flexibility of an LXP. 

This allows steering talent transformation in an organization in a strategic manner. Organizations can administer their own courses and training while also empowering employees to learn content that interests them. The management also gains insights and an understanding of each employee’s interests which enables them to chart a learning journey that aligns the organization’s goals and the employee’s goals in a meaningful way.


Why do companies need LTPs?

With today’s work landscape becoming highly remote and hybrid, it is paramount that organizations are able to understand the goals and aspirations of their employees and utilize that information to achieve business objectives. A learning transformation platform like ICOG allows the organization to be constantly aware of employees’ interests by studying their learning paths on the platform. Such data can provide a buffer from the negative effects of future economic events similar to the Great Resignation, which was largely caused by the feeling of disconnect between employees and the organization, and high rates of employee dissatisfaction with their work.


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