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What is an ELMS and How Can it Benefit an Experiential Learning & Education Program?
An Experiential Learning Management System, or ELMS, is a software application used by Higher Educational Institutions' experiential learning departments to manage the experiential education component of a program's curriculum (experiential learning, experiential education & service learning). ELMS platforms offer an innovative, comprehensive and efficient approach to operational management and include tools to meet all of an Experiential Learning departments needs. Simply stated, an ELMS automates the scheduling, daily tasks, administration and reporting of all required experiential education functions. Comprehensive ELMS software should include many the unique features that are imperative to meet the requirements of dynamic experiential education departments.
An effective ELMS should provide the following benefits:
1) Operational Efficiency
An effective ELMS should save the experiential/externship department time and money by increasing operational efficiencies (extern scheduling, reporting, communication, data management, etc). Depending on the size and complexity of the department, a robust ELMS should save 0.5 to 3 FTEs.
2) Compliance & Accreditation Accountability
An effective ELMS should help the school avoid accreditation, compliance, and LDA issues by efficiently managing critical data associated with experiential education (student hours worked, immunizations, background checks, student competencies, student evaluations, site contracts, etc).
An effective ELMS should enable efficient, three-way communication between the three account types: Department Administrators, Students, and Preceptors/Sites in the field.
4) Department Turnover
An effective ELMS should provide a standard platform for operational/process standardization, document management, and succession planning for inevitable staff turnover within the department.
5) School Image
An state-of-the-art ELMS should foster an image of "efficiency and innovation" to the school's preceptors (many of which are potential employers and alumni).
A comprehensive ELMS should include:
Experiential learning nomenclature for preceptors, externships, and specific processes within a particular program are diverse. Examples include: intern scheduling systems; resident management software; Cooperative Teacher scheduling; externship site coordinator; Cooperative Teacher management; clerkship management tools; PLE rotation scheduling software; Clinical Coordinator and clinicals scheduling; Site Coordinator internship and sponsor scheduling solutions; advanced rotation scheduling system; student internship management; clerkship management software; externship organization tool.
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