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Learning Management System (LMS): sub-module 1 of 15 of learning online: online classes category

A Learning Management System (or LMS) is like a website version of your courses. It is where you will retrieve and submit assignments, view course content, participate in group discussions, take tests and exams, and receive other information from your instructors and peers. In addition to an LMS, you might have other software or hardware requirements for your course or program.


About your college LMS

There are a few different LMS, but two common ones are Blackboard and Brightspace (otherwise known as Desire2Learn or D2L). Check to see which LMS you are using at your college.

If you need help using one of these LMS, or you have questions about how to do certain things, explore the following support pages:

Below are some videos to help you navigate your courses in your LMS.

Blackboard Introduction to the Original Course View for Students

BrightSpace Navigate Brightspace Learning Environment - Content

Ensure you have the software and hardware


  • As a college student, you may be eligible for software provided at your college, such as Microsoft Office or Adobe products. Check with your ITS department.
  • Individual courses may have additional software requirements, such as programs for playing audio or video, or a specific software application. In some instances, it may be necessary to upgrade your version of the application to meet course requirements.
  • Some applications may require you to install a student Virtual Private Network (VPN) to access licensed software. Check what is required to ensure you have VPN access.
  • Your faculty may use online teaching tools that you may have to download and install. Review your course page and read the course outline or syllabus.


The following are typical hardware requirements and recommendations for college students who are studying online:

  • Regular access to a reliable computer that runs on Windows 10 or the latest Mac OSX (i.e. Catalina) and has up to date virus protection software.
  • The latest web browser. It may be necessary to upgrade your web browser. Websites such as can tell you if you are using the latest version of a browser.
  • Reliable high-speed broadband access (Cable or DSL) (highly recommended.)
  • More advanced systems if required by your program or course. Refer to your program page for information on any specialized requirements.
  • Headphones or speakers and a microphone to use for classes with synchronous activities
  • A webcam (may be a specific requirement for courses in your program)