Introducing the New Learner Experience


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Introducing the New Learner Experience

We would like to announce the next evolution of Absorb LMS - it's our most personal, intelligent, and engaging experience ever, and is launching on November 26, 2017. While our current learner interface is nearly five years old, and remains one of the best learning management systems in the industry, we wanted to make it even better. 

Our new learner interface is based on years' worth of client feedback, our own experiences, and modern, social learning functionality. With greater control for admins, an intuitive design for learners, and social engagement tools to invoke interest and improve learning momentum, we're once again setting the bar on what an LMS should be.



New & Changed Functionality

The Public Dashboard

  • The public dashboard allows users to see billboards, news, FAQs, and courses from the catalog before logging in
  • Allowing users to see content before logging in gives Admins the ability to introduce the LMS through instructions and context for those who may need a bit of assistance before they get started
  • The public dashboard gives organizations the tools and space to use the dashboard as promotional space, as well as allowing users to begin shopping from the first page they land on
  • The Featured Courses area allows Admins to select specific course content to showcase to existing and potential learners


Responsive Design

  • The New Learner Experience leverages a responsive interface design which we have paired with usage across modern browsers and devices
  • The flexible layout of content and images makes your portal feel like a made-to-measure experience
  • Learners have a number of appearance choices available to them when viewing courses and the catalog, giving them control over the amount of information they see on the page
  • The result is a design that will look great on anything from a phone, to an HD boardroom TV


Social & Engagement

  • Leaderboards* are a new addition to Absorb's Mercury module, and provide competition for your learners, letting them determine how they compare to their colleagues
  • Individual rankings can be compared to other learners within their own department, or across the entire organization


  • Communication is encouraged through threaded comments


  • Star ratings for learning content also provide valuable feedback for your business 


  • Course content is easily shared in a click through auto-generated links
  • Pins let learners save something they found in Absorb for later, adding it to a dedicated space on their dashboard
  • Tailored recommendations are provided to learners, based on content they are already interested in, helping maintain learning momentum


Industry Leading Search

  • The built-in search tool analyzes your portal's content to provide results based on specific search terms
  • In-line filters provide a way to further refine what kind of content you're looking for, from courses to polls and surveys
  • The option of searching by course rating is also an option, quickly providing learners context and narrowing down the kind of content they're after


Course & Catalog Views

Learners have four options when viewing their courses or the catalog:

  • Card view provides a more visual look of all the content available, showcasing the artwork you have added to your courses


  • Detail view gives learners a full look at artwork, descriptions, ratings, and any tags or competencies


  • List view provides only the course name, type and rating


  • Calendar view provides an overview of ILCs for the entire month, and below the calendar is a list of all upcoming events


  • The On Login Course functionality (similar to what was previously known as "Mandatory Course" functionality) will allow Admins to require a learner to complete a course on their first login to the portal.

My Activity

  • The "My Activity" area in the user profile provides an Activity Feed for learners to see exactly what they were last up to
  • This assists learners to jump back in where they left off, and makes it easy to continue learning 
  • Enrollments, comments, completions, and certificates earned will be displayed in chronological order any time they want to check back on their learning history



Updated FAQs & News Articles

  • Adding content to FAQs and News Articles has been streamlined by retiring the option of adding short answers for FAQs, and captions for News Articles
  • In their place, Absorb automatically previews the full text of both, immediately allowing learners a peek without getting overloaded with content
  • Viewing the full answer (or news article) is only one click away, and learners aren't forced to navigate away from the current page


Thumbnail & Image Artwork

  • Focus has been pulled onto artwork for courses, curricula, news articles, and more
  • Thumbnails have been retired as Absorb will automatically use the full sized image as needed, depending on where and how it is being used
  • If you have multiple images in your course settings, learners will see them in the integrated poster carousel


Themes & Branding

  • System Administrators are empowered with the ability to customize icons, colors, course banners, position of tiles, and to shake up featured courses at a moment's notice


  • Putting admins in the driver seat allows organizations to change and offer content that makes sense for their business



  • The Messages area has been divided into two main areas using a built-in filter: Priority Messages, and System Messages
  • Priority Messages will only show direct messages, or messages that require a call to action where the user is expected to respond (e.g., enrollment updates, reminders, etc.)
  • System Messages focus on system messages that are automated, and record activity (e.g., enrollments, completions, etc.)


Coming Soon

Some functionality will not be available at the launch of the New Learner Experience, but will be down the road:

  • Record Other Training functionality to allow users to submit training taken outside of the LMS
  • Additional task types will join the Simple Task option when setting up lessons

Retired Functionality

Prerequisite Groups

  • This very minor change was made to facilitate a logical and clearly defined learner experience, rather than require a high degree of complexity on the learner's part
  • Due to this complexity, different types of prerequisites cannot be combined to form prerequisite groups, however simple prerequisites may still be used
  • Availability rules, or curricula continue to be available to admins for complex course requirements as functional alternatives to prerequisite groups


  • Due to the high administrative burden, very low overall usage, and lack of effective learner engagement, contests have been retired in the New Learner Experience
  • New engagement tools have been introduced with leaderboards, a more flexible dashboard, and improvements to comments to enhance the way Admins can encourage competition and collaboration
  • While contests will not be available in the New Learner Experience, they will continue to work and be available in the previous learner interface

Internet Explorer 9 & 10

  • Support for Internet Explorer 9 and 10 has been discontinued in the New Learner Experience
  • Browser support continues for Internet Explorer 11, and the latest versions of Edge, Firefox, Chrome, Safari where users will be able to see and use the New Learner Experience


  • Support for LDAP SSO has been discontinued in the New Learner Experience, however Absorb LMS will continue to support Absorb and SAML SSO

Upgrading to the New Learner Experience

  • Absorb will be proactively reaching out to, and working with clients successively to make the New Learner Experience available to those interested once we're ready to roll it out
  • To ensure a smooth upgrade, we will be working on portal branding and checking that existing portal settings are correctly inherited prior to reaching out, making it as easy as flipping a switch for your System Admin


  • Once available, a we will reach out to System Admins with what happens next, and instructions on how they will be able to see and test the New Learner Experience within their own production portal


  • You can upgrade at any time once happy with how everything looks! We have ensured that the process is seamless, and that System Admins have full control before your learners are introduced to anything new.

We will be making the New Learner Experience available first to those who are interested in upgrading their portal's Learner User Interface to the New Learner Experience. If this sounds like you, please let us know by clicking this link to express your interest.


Disclaimer: The New Learner Experience may vary from pictures shown due to product enhancement prior to the official launch on November 26, 2017. *Leaderboards are part of the optional Mercury Module add-on.

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  • 1
    Daniel Andres

    This looks incredible and is a complete game changer!... been waiting for an update like this for some time. The course card view, course artwork, and overall new design is a great improvement creating a more modern looking UI. Also, really excited about system admins being able to edit the course tiles, branding, icons, etc. Can't wait for this to get rolled out. 

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