Virtual Learning Environments

Virtual Learning Environments

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Term2.png Virtual Learning Environments
An integrated set of tools that support online learning. A virtual learning environment (VLE) usually includes the following components:

  1. a mechanism to deliver learning material
  2. access to learning resources
  3. tools to enable communication, discussion and collaboration amongst learners and with the instructor
  4. assessment tools
  5. a student tracking system

These could either be individual tools that are programmed to function in an integrated manner or they can be facilities provided by a single product. Users in a VLE are assigned roles of a student, a teacher and an administrator. Each role comes with rights, which follow a hierarchy.

Two other popular terms that are used to refer to these environments are: Content Management System (CMS) and Learning Management System (LMS). The difference between these terms is often debated and there does not seem to be much of a consensus amongst learning professionals on the exact distinction between them.[1]

See also: A.D.D.I.E Model, Authoring Tools


  1. (2 November 2009) (2 November 2009) (2 November 2009) (2 November 2009),,sid9_gci866691,00.html (2 November 2009)