LMS

learndash review

LearnDash Review 2023: LMS WordPress Plugin

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If you’re in search of a learning management system (LMS) plugin to streamline the administration of your courses, Learndash is definitely worth checking out.

With this plugin, managing your courses becomes a breeze – from creating and organizing course content to grading and evaluation.

Curious about the benefits and drawbacks of Learndash? Take a look at my review where I share my thoughts on this fantastic plugin. Let’s dive in!

You can read LifterLMS Vs LearnDash: Which Is The Best?

Overview Of LearnDash

LearnDash

LearnDash is a well-established and widely used LMS plugin for WordPress. Since its launch in 2012, it has been the go-to choice for many prestigious online institutions and universities.

In addition to its own features, LearnDash has also partnered with Astra, an open-source WordPress theme that can help you build a top-notch educational website.

With LearnDash, you can create courses, quizzes, and categories; track user progress; and reward learners with points, awards, and certificates.

Its convenience and functionality make it a popular choice for both large and small educational institutions and businesses.

This professional plugin allows you to schedule courses as you see fit. And if you opt for the pro version, you’ll receive all updates and support for one year.

LearnDash delivers the experience you expect from an LMS and integrates seamlessly with essential plugins like WooCommerce, Easy Digital Download, Buddypress, Stripe, Paypal, Mailchimp, and more.

LearnDash Review: Quick Core Features

For LearnersFocus mode, Video Progression, Automated notifications, Learning paths, Badges & certificates, Profile Dashboard
For Course CreatorsOnboarding wizard, Drag & drop course builder, Assignment management, Advanced quizzing, Flexible prerequisites, Dynamic content delivery.
For EcommerceOne-time purchases, Subscriptions, Payment gateways, Memberships, Course bundles, and Stripe integration.
For FlexibilityDrag and drop course builder, Extendible, Choose any themes, Use any media, Integrations, Marketplace.

Pros and Cons of LearnDash

LearnDash Pros

  • The User Interface is very simple
  • Gamification for an interactive reward system.
  • Compatible with SCORM
  • Multiple Add-ons increase functionality
  • Support is reliable with trusted users and developers to solve a problem. 

LearnDash Cons

  • Cost is much higher
  • It has a learning curve

Highlighted Features Of LearnDash

Content Creation And Management

LearnDash offers a unique course delivery system that allows courses to be delivered directly to students on a set date. As an LMS, you can integrate a variety of plugins and themes with this.

In addition, it features a minimalist user interface that you can access from the WordPress dashboard and is consistent with the default WordPress UI. The options are straightforward, but each function comes with its own tutorial.

On the left sidebar, you’ll find all the options. On the overview page, you’ll find tutorials for each setting. Once you complete the Bootcamp, you’ll have full control over the LearnDash LMS plugin.

LearnDash backend interface

Each setting has an associated video tutorial to help you understand its function as you work. And for easy access to all available options, they’re listed at the top. Plus, LearnDash offers a classic editor for your use.

LearnDash backend courses option

Advanced Quizzes 

Quizzes are a user-friendly feature for both developers and end-users. They’re a great way to make studying more engaging. Plus, the add-ons will enhance your website’s functionality with advanced features.

To create a quiz within a lesson, go to the LearnDash menu and click on Quizzes. Then click on Add New and give your quiz a title. Next, go to the Builder and start creating questions.

Advanced Quizzes 

Once you’ve finished a question, you can save it or continue editing. In the quiz option, you’ll find 8 different types of questions. The drag-and-drop editor lets you rearrange answers by dragging them up or down using the tiles icon.

After completing the quiz, you can add it using the shortcode or directly from the Courses option. You can insert the quiz into any section or lesson. The Quizzes option is located in the right-hand sidebar of the Course page in the Builder menu.

LearnDash Course Builder

LearnDash is fully compatible with Gutenberg right out of the box. With the Gutenberg editor at your fingertips, you can easily create a course from scratch. And with its many creative features, you’ll have everything you need to get started.

LearnDash Course Builder

Besides, Learndash works with many popular page builders as well.

While you can do some amazing things with any page builder, there may still be some limitations.

To build a course in LearnDash, go to the Courses tab on the LearnDash menu and click on Add New. Enter the title of your course and click on the Builder setting to add new lessons and courses.

LearnDash new course setting

You’ll find options for adding a New Section Heading and a New Lesson, as well as a quiz feature. The right-hand sidebar lets you add an existing quiz.

To add a new lesson, click on New Lesson, enter a title, and click Save. Then click Update to apply the change. Click Edit on the newly created lesson to open a lesson page where you can add content.

You can use either the WordPress editor or a page builder to add your content. You can add PDFs, videos, or text-based content according to your lesson plan.

Course Management

LearnDash offers you control of your courses. You can create courses and assign tutors to manage them. Creating groups and sub-groups and giving tutors the ability to manage their own courses within each one is a piece of cake for this plugin.

Tutors can assign tasks, award points, request comment approval, and provide feedback to specific students.

With LearnDash, you can tailor your curriculum template to meet your specific needs and manage the content you offer to students.

LearnDash course management

In the settings tab of the Courses menu, you can choose whether to make a course free or paid. Setting up a custom link for the course will also allow students to subscribe or enroll manually.

Focus Mode

One issue with front-end development on an LMS is that it can sometimes look unprofessional. When you’re trying to learn from a professional source, the last thing you want is an amateurish platform.

Learndash focus mode

Amateurish design can make a site look unappealing. For example, if you remove the widgets from the sidebar, the content may still be pushed to the left side of the page while the sidebar takes up the entire right side.

This isn’t a professional way to design an eLearning website. But thankfully, LearnDash has a solution: Focus Mode. To enable it, go to the Settings page and click on the General tab.

Once activated, Focus Mode automatically changes the interface of each course and lesson. Content is centered, with a course/lesson list on the left and a progress bar at the top.

Learndash focus mode setting

If you prefer, you can move the sidebar to the right and increase the content size to full width. With just one click, you can have a sleek and professional-looking eLearning website.

Learndash focus mode interface

Reusable Content

When building an educational or tutorial website, you may find yourself creating similar courses. For example, let’s say you’ve already created courses on Facebook and Twitter ads for your website.

Now you’re planning to offer a Complete Digital Marketing course. Do you want to create those courses all over again?

If the content is the same, you’ll probably want to reuse your previous courses. And LearnDash lets you do just that.

When creating a new course, you can use any of the content from your existing courses. All the items are available on the right sidebar under the course builder settings.

Automation Rules via Engagement Triggers

The best part about this plugin is that it automatically sends email notifications to users. Sometimes students start a lesson but don’t finish it.

However, by using the engagement trigger correctly, you can significantly increase the completion rate.

Learndash engagement triggers

I really like the “Enrolls in a course”, “Completes a course“, and “X days before the course expires” features. When students enroll in a course, you can give them course-related materials.

Also, when a student finishes a course, you can suggest another related course to encourage them to buy it. Plus, you can use the deadline trigger to boost engagement rates and as a call-to-action to increase course sales.

With the Zapier tool, you can put users into different sales funnels to sell more courses. It’s a handy multi-purpose feature for content marketing.

Memberships 

With LearnDash, you have the option to sell your courses as memberships. This means that instead of providing access to individual online courses, you can create a variety of subscription plans, each with its own selection of courses.

If a user purchases a membership plan, they will be automatically enrolled in all the courses included in that plan.

You have the flexibility to set a fixed price for the membership plan or make it a recurring purchase (such as $19 per month). You can also sell the membership through WooCommerce or Easy Digital Downloads

Payment Integration

People often prefer simple solutions that take less time and effort. LearnDash’s PayPal integration is quick, secure, and easy to use.

With WooCommerce, you can integrate PayPal, Stripe, 2Checkout, and many other payment providers. Plus, LearnDash works with Easy Digital Downloads (EDD), so you can use the systems you’re familiar with.

PayPal is already integrated into LearnDash, so you won’t have to search for it when setting up your site. You’ll just need to provide some payment and banking information, which only takes a few seconds.

And you won’t need to install any extra plugins or apps for the payment system.

LearnDash Certification

It’s easy to create a certificate with LearnDash. Just go to the LearnDash menu and select “Certificate“, enter a title, and add content.

You can use the “set featured image” feature to add graphics and make the certificate look nice. This will add a background to the certificate.

To preview your certificate, you’ll need to add a quiz and assign it to the quiz. Then open the quiz in a new tab and answer the questions correctly. If you pass, you can download your certificate as a PDF file.

By downloading the PDF file, you can quickly see what your certificate will look like in LearnDash.

  • Documentation and after-sales support is really important when buying a product.
  • Documentation and user guides can solve 80% of problems, but you’ll need some guidance for the remaining 20%.

LearnDash Gamification

Gamification is a great way to boost course completion and engagement rates. As humans, we don’t like hard work, but rewards motivate us to keep going. That’s why we love games – each level has a reward.

LearnDash has features like course points, leaderboards, badges, certificates, and more. And if you want to enhance the certification aspect even further, you can use additional add-ons.

LearnDash Documentation and Support

LearnDash plugin documentation

LearnDash provides all its documentation and support links right on the overview page. You can check them out to learn how to use the features.

The documentation pages have gifs, videos, screenshots, and text explanations. It’s organized so you won’t feel overwhelmed.

Also, Learndash’s customer support is highly honored by its users. They’re quick to respond to your concerns.

LearnDash offers support in these methods:

  • Email/Help Desk
  • FAQs/Forum
  • Knowledge Base
  • Phone Support.

LearnDash also has a trusted user community that can help you solve any problems if you can’t find a tutorial. You can ask for help from their Facebook community or YouTube channel. Support is available through these channels.

LearnDash Pricing Plans

LearnDash is a premium plugin and doesn’t offer a free trial. You’ll need a premium license to build your eLearning website.

LearnDash Pricing plans

The pricing is competitive with other plugins and includes everything you need. The Basic Package starts at $199/year for a single site with all the premium features.

You can buy either a Plus or Pro plan for a multisite license.

  • The Plus plan costs $399 a year, and you can use it on up to 10 sites.
  • The Pro plan is for unlimited sites and costs $799 per year.

Who Can Use LearnDash?

LearnDash is an excellent solution for businesses, solo course creators, and anyone who wants to provide training or online courses.

You can use it to create and deliver free or paid course content, monetize your site with online courses, and track your employees’ progress in training courses.

FAQs Related to LearnDash Plugin

  1. Is LearnDash free?

    LearnDash is a premium plugin and doesn’t have a free trial or free version. But they do offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, which I think you won’t need. In the meantime, you can try out the tool to see if it’s right for you.

  2. Does LearnDash have any live training features?

    Even though live training is a popular feature these days, it’s not part of Learndash’s core functionality. But since LearnDash supports Zapier Apps, you don’t have to worry too much – you can use any add-on you want.

  3. Will Learndash work with my theme?

    The plugin works with all modern WordPress themes. You shouldn’t have any problems unless you’re using a custom-coded theme that has issues with LearnDash.

  4. Is LearnDash suitable for academic institutions?

    Yes, LearnDash is designed to work well for academic institutions, including features like SCORM and Tin Can API (xAPI) support for heavy-duty implementations and the ProPanel feature for managing assignments and getting detailed learner information and analytics.

  5. Is LearnDash a good investment?

    Yes, LearnDash is a good investment. It is well-designed, well-documented, and well-supported, and scales well. The LearnDash package is easy to use for complicated needs, making it a complete package.

  6. Can LearnDash be integrated with other software?

    Yes, LearnDash is compatible with several other software, including WooCommerce, EDD, Stripe, SamCart, Course Grid, Zapier, BuddyPress, bbPress, Gravity Forms, Badge OS, GamiPress, Event Espresso, 2Checkout, Mailchimp, and many more. 

Conclusion of LearnDash

LearnDash is a great LMS plugin for serious course creators and institutions. While many online gurus offer their courses on platforms like Udemy, Linda, and Skillshare, but you can go the extra mile and build your own online platform with LearnDash.

Institutions with both local and international students can use this plugin to share their knowledge. It makes it much easier to create, manage, and sell courses and manage students.

Overall, Learndash is the perfect choice if you are looking to build an online learning platform using WordPress.

Author

  • Palash Talukder

    Palash Talukdar is a digital marketer & the founder of WP Basic Pro. He has been building and managing WordPress websites for 5+ years. He loves to write about WordPress, SEO, marketing, productivity, and web performance.

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