12th Symposium on Education


Implementing a Learning Management System in the National Weather Service

LeRoy Spayd Jr., NOAA/NWS, Silver Spring, MD

The NWS Training Program has greatly increased the number of training opportunities offered over the past few years. This training is offered not only via traditional in-residence classes, but also via such distance learning approaches as teletraining, webcasts, and web modules. With training now available via so many different media, it has become increasingly complex to schedule attendance and slot assignments for classes and teletraining sessions, and increasingly important for NWS to track and record training accomplishments by its staff. The scheduling, planning and tracking procedures are currently accomplished through a labor-intensive email, phone call and paper exchange process.

Software referred to as Learning Management System (LMS) is being procured through the Department of Transportation Virtual University using GeoLearning. The LMS will enable the NWS to track training accomplishments by its staff and facilitate scheduling of in-residence or distance learning training by all NWS employees. The LMS is combined with virtual university (e-learning) on-line courseware, and the NWS will be looking to expand the initial LMS system to include 1600 on-line courses offered by Skillsoft, Netg and other vendors.

LMS systems provide individuals the ability to keep track of their own training records, and allow local managers to track the training progress of staff at their office. LMS also provides a way to compile training evaluation and test results. Regional and Headquarters staff can review summaries of training. LMS provides varying levels of information access depending on need to know. LMS is intended as a productivity-enhancing record keeping tool. The NWS LMS will be deployed in October 2002. This paper will discuss the status and lessons learned from implementing a LMS within the NWS.

Poster Session 2, University and Professional Initiatives
Monday, 10 February 2003, 2:30 PM-2:30 PM

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