Saturday, March 07, 2015

Test Driving Weo.io: the "simple" LMS

On r/edtech last week, some developers wanted to get some people test driving their new LMS, Weo. Always a sucker for a good LMS, I decided to give it a spin.




Weo reminds me of Google Classroom in its initial layout. It generates a time line and teachers can add assignments or announcements for students. It has a bit (just a bit) more flexibility than Classroom  in the kinds of assignments that the teacher can make, but does not do the job of managing GAfE documents that Classroom handles effortlessly.

Setting up your account and login is simple. You can fill out the registration for or let your Google credentials take care of it. I was able to easily start an account with both a standard Gmail account and a GAfE account. Once the teacher is in, they can set up their own classes and send the students a code to join the class.



Once in the class the teacher can add content or questions. The content can be any number of questions (some of which, like multiple choice, will self grade), links, video, text blocks or images. You can add as many or as few of these items as you wish, as well as turn a discussion element on or off for the question.



When the student clicks the assignment, they are presented with the content and questions. They can answer or review the items and if questions are to be answered, the student will have a turn in button. If presented with a multiple choice question, it will be graded when the student turns it in. Others teachers may grade and assign a point value.

This is certainly, as it says on the label, a simple LMS. I have a feeling some people will love the simplicity and find this is all they want from an LMS. After experiencing the tight GAfE integration of Classroom, I miss that in Weo, but teachers not immersed in the GAfE ecosystem will not. I would think having no way to attach a document as a student is a glaring omission, but this may not be a design choice but something in the pipeline.

Weo is coming into a crowded market, but Weo could find its place. I believe with just a few minutes of test driving the platform, teachers hesitant to use an LMS could really find a comfortable fit with Weo. The old hands at the blended classroom are going to find the lack of features limiting, but with a few added features, Weo might possibly the simplest and most straight forward LMS on the market. That is going to appeal to a large number of teachers just beginning with a blended classroom model.

2 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for the write up. We're actually in the middle of figuring out the best way to integrate with GAfE and google docs right now. We'd love to hear how you think these features would best fit into our platform!

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  2. I am not sure what the special sauce would be for that. I know Classroom incorporates a lot of document handling stuff I don't know if it can be done from the outside with an API rather than in house. I think that if you had a place to upload local documents and maybe a "Submit link to document" form, you would be on the right track. The platform is definitely one I will be keeping my eye on and recommending.

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