Elearning Lingo and Terms You Should Know

Designing Digitally


eLearning terms

This blog was updated on 11/10/20.

Every fraternity and sorority has its own code that members of the group abide by. The same goes for eLearning professionals, who have their own jargon that they cite on a regular basis. Knowing the terminology will help you to communicate better with your eLearning developer and ensure the two of you are on the same page when it comes to your training needs. The following acronyms and phrases are sure to pop up regularly while you deal with the eLearning needs of your organization.


Any training delivered digitally online is considered eLearning. Learners can utilize a computer, a tablet, or a smartphone to access information over the internet anytime, anywhere.

Instructional Design

Instructional design, in a layman’s term, means designing the mode and medium of instruction. It is the systematic procedure of developing, creating, and delivering eLearning content in a traditional or virtual environment. Instructional designers work closely with subject matter experts to create the course content. Instructional designing mostly pertains to working on the user interface and the learning experience.

Blended learning

This form of learning is a hybrid of face-to-face and online training. Blended learning allows learners to get the best of both worlds, by offering them experiential learning on both virtual and physical space.  Effectively, users can access their course content online and can also approach in-person facilitators in case of any doubts or in-depth knowledge sessions.

Authoring Tool

An authoring tool is a software that allows you to create eLearning content using its templates and asset libraries. You can add your creativity and use various templates to revise the course design. Authoring tools help you create courses in-house, organize and edit learning elements, and revamp the layout of the modules. These tools make it super easy to create rich and interactive learning. Special programming skills are not required. There are several options available; you need to choose the one that best suits your needs.

Elearning Localization

This term means converting the course content to deliver it based on the local geography. Localization doesn’t merely mean changing the language and font, adding translation or subtitles for the video lectures, and so on. In fact, it is a vital process that makes sure each aspect of the eLearning course (layout, images and so on) is acceptable to the target audience.

LMS: Learning Management System

An LMS is a platform that helps eLearning professionals schedule, plan, develop, and deploy e-learning course content. It allows you to track user progress, schedule learning activities, host virtual events and embed multimedia elements into the e-learning module. An LMS also works as a data repository as you can store all data, statistics, development paths, resources, and assessment results in it. This feature of the LMS helps in preserving data integrity and maintaining its security.  It is a great tool to do away with superfluous tasks that are complicated to handle. However, do not confuse it with a Learning Content Management System (LCMS) that is usually used for eLearning content creation.

GBL: Game-Based Learning

GBL refers to games developed with specific learning outcomes in mind, and can also be referred to as Serious Games. This learning approach combines fun and learning in a balanced way, immersing the learner in an engaging and entertaining learning experience.

Social Learning

Social learning recognizes that completing training and learning courses in a collaborative way, where ideas can be freely discussed and explored, creates much higher engagement and retention than more traditional learning methods.

Asynchronous Learning

Asynchronous learning offers users access and complete an online course at different times. This is a key concept in eLearning and computer-based training and allows a course to be delivered at a pace that suits learners individually. 

Synchronous Learning

Synchronous learning requires that users must access and complete an online course at the same time, regardless of the individual location. Synchronous learning offers real-time interaction between instructors and learners, which Asynchronous learning does not.


eLearning terms are very important when trying to determine the best delivery methods and approaches to learning. If you are interested in learning more about how online learning could be utilized in your business development plans, Designing Digitally would love to help. We create custom courses that are catered to your unique needs and goals and create positive changes and results. Contact our team to discuss your training needs today!