Apr 19, 2021
11 Best WordPress LMS Plugins for Your eLearning Site
Many people seek more interactive and practical ways to learn, be it learning how to play a musical instrument or mastering web development. This makes the learning management systems (LMS) consistently grow in demand as the LMS market worth is expected to reach over $12 billion by 2024.
This article will go over a selection of the best WordPress LMS plugins to help you get set up and running. It will also provide helpful tips on how to choose the best LMS plugin for your needs.
What Is an LMS Plugin and Why Do You Need One?
A learning management system plugin comes with features that allow you to easily create, host, and manage online classes and training programs. Many LMS WordPress plugins offer extensive tools, such as gamification, incentives, and forum integrations.
Installing an LMS plugin can turn your WordPress website into a functional eLearning platform. It provides an easy way to create and deliver engaging courses to your audience, which can vary from text-based material to interactive quizzes and videos.
Additionally, these plugins let you enroll students, track progress reports, and configure payment options from the admin dashboard.
It’s important to note that an LMS plugin is different from a membership plugin. Membership plugins focus on protecting and restricting access to your content, while LMS plugins provide the tools to create such content in the first place.
Now that we covered LMS plugins’ functions, let’s take a look at the 11 best WordPress LMS plugins on the market.
Top 6 Free LMS Plugins
The following are our favorite free learning management system plugins to help you get started on your online learning platform.
1. Namaste! LMS
- Downloads: 1,000+
- Rating: 4.6/5
- Pricing: freemium (premium version available from $67/license)
Namaste! LMS allows you to create unlimited courses, lessons, and assignments. It also allows you to define the various course and lesson access criteria based on completeness, test results, or manual approval.
This WordPress LMS plugin supports custom post types, making it possible to include a variety of different eLearning content on your website.
Teachers can also grade students’ performance by assigning points for achievements or using a grading system. Features like award badges and certificates are also available upon course completion.
Let’s take a look at some of the notable features, like:
- Payment gateways via Stripe and PayPal.
- A variety of categories for course types.
- Integration with BuddyPress for student discussions.
- Ability to manage and assign specific roles to multiple users.
To get advanced features, such as a leaderboard generator, content restriction, and gamification, upgrading to the premium version of Namaste! LMS might be a good solution. It costs $67/license and comes with one year of customer support and free upgrades.
2. Tutor LMS
- Downloads: 20,000+
- Rating: 4.7/5
- Pricing: freemium (premium version available from $149/year)
Tutor LMS is an LMS WordPress plugin that comes with plenty of features to optimize an eLearning site. This plugin’s free version provides lots of tools, including an intuitive drag-and-drop function, a lesson management system, and a front-end student dashboard.
Tutor LMS offers a quiz creator that supports more than 10 question styles, such as true or false, multiple choices, fill in the blank, and short answers. It also allows you to customize the timers or limit the attempts on specific questions to make the learning experience more fun and challenging.
Notable features of Tutor LMS are:
- Unlimited online courses and lessons.
- Q&A section for students to interact with each other and ask questions.
- Ability to manage student and instructor profiles from the admin panel.
- Beautiful, custom-designed certificates.
- Compatibility with Gutenberg, WooCommerce, and Easy Digital Downloads.
You can upgrade to Tutor LMS Pro starting from $149/year for a single license for additional benefits, such as content drip, multimedia attachments, and grading system.
- Downloads: 100,000+
- Rating: 4.4/5
- Pricing: free
LearnPress is a free WordPress site plugin with an easy-to-use user interface, similar to the WordPress dashboard. Its drag-and-drop builder allows you to create courses, lessons, and quizzes quickly and effortlessly.
To give you more functionality, LearnPress offers various free and premium add-ons. The free add-ons include wishlists, course reviews, and prerequisite courses. At the same time, LearnPress premium add-ons allow you to add a drip-feed feature and assign multiple instructors for a specific course.
Other notable features of LearnPress include:
- Integration with BuddyPress and bbPress forum.
- Multiple payment gateway options, like PayPal, WooCommerce, and offline methods.
- Random quiz function on specific courses.
- Option to reward students with award certificates.
Although the plugin is free of charge, the one-off price for premium add-ons starts from $19.99 to $29.99. Also, LearnPress offers two theme bundle options starting from $249.99 for a one-time fee.
- Downloads: 10,000+
- Rating: 4/5
- Pricing: free
Sensei is a WordPress LMS plugin built by the same team behind the leading eCommerce plugin, WooCommerce.
It offers seamless integration with WooCommerce and gives you flexible monetization options for selling your online courses. This WordPress LMS plugin also works nicely with most WordPress themes, allowing you to turn your website into a fully functional online classroom with no coding required.
With Sensei, creating courses is as simple as creating posts or pages through the WordPress editor. There are options to attach videos, include quizzes, and manage students’ work using the provided grade book.
Other features offered by the Sensei LMS plugin include:
- User account dashboard allows students to sign up for a course and manage their progress easily.
- Built-in language localization system to provide courses in multiple languages.
- Course analytics to give you information on grades, course completion, and students registered.
Compared to other WordPress plugins, Sensei doesn’t include as much functionality unless you install additional extensions. The prices for the extensions range from being free to download to $129/year.
- Downloads: 10,000+
- Rating: 4.1/5
- Pricing: freemium (premium version available from $54.99/year)
In addition to producing various course content types, MasterStudy LMS also includes an option for creating trial courses. With its live streaming feature, you can even conduct real-time lectures and make your learning sessions more engaging.
The smooth integration with WooCommerce, PayPal, and Stripe gives you much more flexibility regarding payment gateways.
Furthermore, this LMS plugin works excellent with Elementor page builder and offers multiple design customizations. You can choose to present your content in a grid or carousel-style and display featured teachers, latest courses, and course categories.
Other notable features of MasterStudy include:
- A user-friendly WYSIWYG editor, which makes your course creation and management more efficient and comfortable.
- Incorporate videos, graphs, images, and other attachment files to make engaging lessons.
- A message board that provides a convenient way for students and teachers to communicate.
The premium version of this LMS plugin for WordPress provides more features, such as course bundles, a point reward system, and Zoom and Google Classroom integration.
MasterStudy Pro starts with a $54.99/year price for a single site and goes up to $149.99/year for 25 sites.
- Downloads: 10,000+
- Rating: 4.7/5
- Pricing: freemium (premium version available from $99/year)
LifterLMS is a freemium plugin that offers feature-rich tools to make your work a breeze. This WordPress LMS plugin works great with any WordPress theme and is also compatible with popular page builders, such as Beaver Builder, Divi, and Elementor.
LifterLMS comes with a Course Options meta-box that lets you manage additional properties, from the course length and difficulty to whether or not you want to display user reviews.
LifterLMS also provides a built-in shopping cart functionality, along with other features:
- Personalized emails to users based on their achievements.
- Ability to offer paid memberships.
- Restrict courses and create course prerequisites.
- Includes downloadable lessons and certificates.
For more functionality, browse through the plugin’s add-ons that include custom fields, private areas, and advanced videos. Since the free version already has a great set of tools for course creation, many users only install payment extensions that start from $99/year.
However, as your website grows, you might need to install multiple add-ons. For this reason, LifterLMS provides two premium bundle options that come with advanced LMS tools starting for $299/year.
Top 5 Premium LMS Plugins
For more advanced features and extensive functionality, take a look at our list of the best premium WordPress LMS plugins.
- Downloads: 20,000+
- Rating: 4.4/5
- Pricing: from $129/year to $199/year
WP Courseware is a premium WordPress LMS plugin that offers an easy-to-use interface, allowing you to create unlimited courses within minutes.
Aside from the intuitive drag-and-drop builder, WP Courseware also comes with these great features:
- Automated notifications and quiz grading to reduce extra work on the administrative end.
- Drip content based on dates or specified intervals.
- A wide selection of training resources to help you with course creation.
- Built-in shopping cart functionality that integrates with Stripe and PayPal.
WP Courseware allows you to modify various elements of the course. These options range from setting up welcome messages and configuring permissions to selecting instructors and sending custom emails.
The feature-rich quiz and survey builder lets you create advanced question types and set timers or retake limits.
For more functionality, WP Courseware offers seamless integrations with multiple WordPress plugins and page builders, such as WooCommerce, BuddyPress, and WPBakery.
This WordPress LMS plugin comes with three pricing plans:
- Teacher plan costs $129/year and can be added to two websites.
- Professor plan costs $149/year and can be added to 10 sites.
- Guru plan costs $199/year and can be added to up to 25 sites.
- Downloads: 10,000+
- Rating: 4.6/5
- Pricing: from $159/year to $329/year
LearnDash is trusted by many Fortune 500 companies and popular learning platforms, including Yoast Academy and WPElevation. This makes it clear why LearnDash is well-known as one of the best LMS plugins for WordPress.
LearnDash offers a plethora of features to turn your WordPress site into a functional online learning platform. These features include:
- Hassle-free online course creation with advanced drag-and-drop functionality.
- Interactive quizzes with up to eight question types, custom messages, and question banks.
- Customizable prerequisites for accessing the courses, lessons, and quizzes.
- Support of any type of media file, ranging from images and videos to SWF files and HTML5.
- Display rankings and awards on an interactive leaderboard.
- Provide detailed records to keep track of enrollment reports, student progress, and performance.
On top of that, LearnDash gives you the flexibility to sell your online courses as bundles, licenses, subscriptions, or memberships. This plugin also integrates with PayPal, Stripe, and 2Checkout, making the payment process a breeze.
If you need help using LearnDash, you can get reliable support from its official Facebook and YouTube channels. Moreover, there is extensive documentation and a FAQ page available to help you get started.
The price for LearnDash starts from $159/year for one site license, $189/year for ten site licenses, and $329/year for up to 25 site licenses. All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Downloads: 400+
- Rating: 4/5
- Pricing: $59/year
CoursePress Pro is a premium WordPress LMS plugin packed with user-friendly features allowing you to create and sell courses, tutorials, documentation, and training videos.
There is a robust admin dashboard to manage student grades and performance, as well as assignments and automatic emails. This WordPress LMS plugin offers an interactive method to deliver your content through its live chat integration and discussion board.
CoursePress doesn’t limit how many students can be a part of your online course on top of providing unlimited courses. If the number of students is too large for one teacher, you can add multiple instructors to help with the management process.
Here are more features that CoursePress Pro offers:
- More than 13 payment gateways are available for more accessible and more effective monetization.
- A unique and modern interface to improve user experience.
- Provide multiple quiz options, including multiple choices, true or false, long answer, and file upload.
- Create teasers and promotional videos to entice potential students.
The CoursePress Pro plugin comes in a bundle with EducationPress – a WordPress education theme designed to improve the LMS systems’ overall performance. This bundle costs $59/year.
4. Good LMS
- Downloads: 1,000+
- Rating: 4/5
- Pricing: $32/license
Good LMS is one of the best WordPress LMS plugins for fast and easy course creation. It comes with an easy-to-use course builder that lets you create online courses as quickly as WordPress blog posts.
This online course plugin allows you to build quizzes and customize certificates directly from your WordPress dashboard. It can provide course ratings and commission rates to turn your WordPress site into a library of paid courses.
Other features that Good LMS includes are:
- Ability to create courses and modify settings through the WordPress interface.
- Customize quiz-taking settings and enable multiple opportunities for retakes.
- Coupon codes to invite more students.
- Allow students to track their scores earning badges and certificates through the student backend.
The price of this WordPress plugin starts from $32/license and includes six months of support.
5. Academy LMS
- Downloads: 3,000+
- Rating: 4.8/5
- Pricing: from $55/year to $550/year
Academy LMS is a premium WordPress LMS plugin that is designed for professional course content creation. The plugin provides advanced features for admins, students, and instructors to ensure that every party using this learning management system (LMS) gets the best experience.
Students can browse through the course portal and filter courses based on specific criteria, then add the chosen courses into a wishlist. There is also a course follow-up for students to track their progress and give a rating after completing a course.
Instructors get a dedicated dashboard to manage courses and view their payment status. As for the administrator features, there is a course dashboard to watch the list of enrolled students, organize course categories, and approve pending courses from instructors.
Here are other great features Academy LMS includes:
- Multiple lesson type files, ranging from videos and images to PDF and DOC files.
- An interactive messaging system for convenient communication between students and instructors.
- Quizzes with unlimited questions and answer types.
- Built-in shopping cart functionality to add multiple courses and purchase them at the same time.
The price for Academy LMS regular license is $55/year, which is ideal for personal projects.
However, if you want to use the plugin for a commercial project, you’ll have to go with the extended license for $550/year.
How to Choose the Right LMS Plugin?
Now that we looked over our list of the best WordPress LMS plugins, it’s time for you to choose and install plugin that will be perfect for your website. To help you with this matter, we listed some essential features to keep in mind when making your choice:
- Course builder. A tool required to create interactive courses for your site. It is also important to make sure your plugin allows you to include a variety of file types, such as PDFs, links, images, or videos.
- Quizzes and assignments. Including short quizzes or tests can be an excellent way to evaluate your students’ progress. The best WordPress LMS plugins usually offer features, such as Q&A, quiz builder, or grading, to let you do just that.
- Student management. This feature makes it easy for you to track how many students are enrolling in your online courses. It also lets you manage attendance reports, memberships, payments, and registrations.
- Content dripping. The content drip functionality allows you to restrict certain courses and release them according to scheduled times and dates. This feature can be used instead of an additional membership plugin.
- Certificates. Providing course completion certificates is a great way to show appreciation for your students and to keep them engaged with your courses. The best WordPress LMS plugins come with a feature to customize certificates for every course.
- Payment gateways. Implementing various payment options will offer flexibility for your customers.
Benefits of Selling Online Courses
With more and more people accessing online courses every day, Global Market Insights reports that the global eLearning market size is expected to surpass $300 billion by 2025.
Aside from the promising statistics above, here are some other benefits you can get from selling online courses:
- Recurring income. You can get a stable recurring income by offering a membership model with a monthly or yearly fee for your courses.
- Flexible. There is no limitation to what courses you can offer. Ranging from academic to self-development skills, you can create courses based on your expertise or interests.
- Scalable. Having your own eLearning site allows you to take action and scale up the business. For example, you can offer discount coupons or send promotional emails to reach a wider audience.
- Cost-effective. Digital products usually require a smaller investment compared to physical products.
- Building a community. An eLearning site not only provides a great way to learn online, but it can also be a place for the audience to interact and engage with each other.
There you have it – we have covered the best WordPress LMS plugins that offer great tools and functionality to turn your WordPress website into an interactive learning platform.
Be sure to define your needs before going over the features and benefits. Determining your budget is also an important step when making your choice.
To summarize, here are our top three free WordPress LMS plugins:
All of these free plugins come with plenty of features to make your eLearning platform look professional and work smoothly. In case you need additional features, you can upgrade each one of these plugins to their premium versions.
Furthermore, our top three recommendations from the premium WordPress LMS plugins list are:
In case you want to avoid a potential lack of functionality, you can invest in a premium plugin right away. These three options are some of the best-rated by the users and come with an extensive list of LMS functions that can improve your eLearning site.
We hope this list will help you find the perfect plugin for your site. Good luck!