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What is Totara? A Beginner’s Guide to Totara Learn LMS

Posted by: Arun
Category: Totara

Totara Learn is a dynamic and adaptable learning management system (LMS) offering a range of tools and features to facilitate effective training and development programs within organizations.

The role of LMS in corporate training has become increasingly vital. LMS platforms like Totara Learn enable organizations to deliver targeted, efficient, and engaging training essential for continuous skill development and compliance in a fast-paced business world.

In this article, we will explore the intricacies of Totara Learn, delving into its features, benefits, and the impact it can have on corporate training and employee development. Join us as we uncover how Totara Learn is shaping the future of corporate learning.

What Is Totara Learn?

Totara Learn, formerly known as Totara LMS, is a comprehensive learning management system tailored for corporate training. It offers customizable training modules, personalized learning plans, robust content management, and assessment and reporting tools. Totara Learn is designed to support both online and blended learning, and it facilitates efficient skill development and compliance management, making it a versatile tool for businesses focused on continuous learning and staff development. As well as being a platform to host all your elearning content on, it has a host of features that make it the quickest, easiest and most reliable way to train staff.

What are the main features of Totara Learn?

In the following section, we delve into the diverse and powerful features of Totara Learn, a comprehensive LMS designed for modern organizations.


With Totara’s Hierarchies you can set up any number of frameworks that best represent the structure of your business.

You can create the specific structures and relationships of job positions and different sections within your organisation.

Learning can then be mapped to individual job roles, management levels, departments, teams and groups.

Learning Plans

Totara Learn enables staff to complete their certifications online or even at home. This allows staff to complete compliance training and certification in their own time.

It will also prompt them when they need to complete specific courses as their certifications expire.

Team Management

Regular team performance check-ins help keep your teams working well. The competencies, goals and objectives features within Totara Learn enable you to plan development across your team.

This makes sure that individual development plans and learning objectives fit with the goals of the wider team and the organisation, and that everyone is heading in the right direction.

Content Management

Totara Learn has a wide range of content authoring and management features, allowing you to create courses with a variety of learning content and activities.

Whether you’re adding your own content directly, uploading SCORM or IMS-based courseware or importing content from an external repository, with Totara Learn you have the control.

Offline and Blended Learning

Totara Learn allows you to manage a range of face-to-face learning events from internal classroom sessions to external workshops or small conferences.

Assessment and Achievement

Totara Learn has a range of assessment options from a powerful inbuilt quiz engine to more formal assignment submissions.


All of this is tied together with full graphical reporting allowing you to view almost any statistic you need. From completion rates and audience data through to evaluation responses.

All the reports are exportable and the report builder will help you fetch the data you need.

Performance Management

Staff evaluations can also be completed in Totara, giving your employees a simple way to self evaluate their performance with managers able to view this and add their own feedback.

Audience Management

Using Totara’s audiences system, you can arrange staff into groups based on department or job role. This means you can create training courses for each audience. Then, members of that audience will be automatically assigned in that training.

Compliance Management

Totara Learn offers a range of tools to assign the right learning programs to the right people, automate recertification reminders and generate comprehensive reports on completions and non-compliance.

Benefits of Using Totara Learn

Totara Learn is a versatile Learning Management System (LMS) offering numerous benefits to enhance organizational learning and development. Below are the key advantages of using Totara Learn.

Engaged Learners

Totara Learn excels in creating an engaging learning environment. It allows easy access to many learning materials, including videos, SCORM/AICC e-learning packages, webcasts, PDFs, and question banks. This accessibility, combined with the provision for instructor-led training, facilitates powerful blended learning experiences. This variety caters to different learning styles and ensures that learners remain engaged and motivated.

Shared Knowledge

The platform fosters a culture of shared knowledge and collaborative learning. It supports informal learning through interactive tools like chat, wikis, and forums. This interactive feature is further enhanced by Totara Social, which allows learners to share knowledge collaboratively and curate content. This aspect of Totara Learn is particularly beneficial for creating a learning community within the organization, encouraging continuous learning and knowledge sharing.

Open Platform

One of the standout features of Totara Learn is its open-source nature. This means that there are no software license fees, providing cost-effective scalability. Users have full access to the source code, allowing them to customize and adapt the LMS to meet their specific organizational needs. This flexibility is a significant advantage for organizations looking for a tailored learning solution rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.

Innovation Network

Totara Learn users benefit from access to the global Totara Partner network. This network is a rich resource of expertise and value-added services, ensuring organizations can find partners that align with their specific needs and goals. This access to a diverse range of experts and resources ensures that organizations can maximize the effectiveness and efficiency of their learning technology investment.

10 Totara Learn Tips

1. Develop an attractive theme

It’s worth investing additional time and effort in producing an interface design that is clear and simple to use, and is engaging enough to really “wow” your learners.

2. Assign positions correctly

Totara hierarchies are highly configurable to provide the structures which facilitate position and organization specific learning plans, competency evaluation and management.

3. Use the ‘bulk assign’ tool

The Bulk Assign tool enables you to assign positions/organizations and managers easily from a CSV spreadsheet.

4. Test your SCORM content

Rather than forcing your learners to repeat tests, you can test for SCORM compatibility using a free tool.

5. Know the limitations

It’s worth involving your IT team at an early stage in the process. If you’re migrating from a legacy platform you’ll need to produce a comprehensive technical specification to ensure that legacy data won’t be lost.

6. Be careful with video!

You should create some form of benchmarking to ensure the system’s infrastructure will cater for the software requirements.

7. Use programme management

Program management allows you to enroll learners by organization, position, management hierarchy, cohort or individually, saving you time.

8. Test the learning journey using ‘user roaming’

It’s simple to do. Just log into Totara as the administrator, once you have done this you can click on a user and roam freely to see how the platform looks through their eyes.

9. Check automated emails are running on time

You need to ensure that email invites are sent at the correct times. Especially if you are running any classroom training using the face-to-face booking module/ or any live online sessions.

10. Seek professional support

It may be stating the obvious, but it’s sensible to enlist professional support at the outset of your journey.

Totara partners play a key role in developing the platform, and helping with the vision for the future of the system. As a Platinum Totara Partner, Webanywhere can provide a fully comprehensive Totara solution.

Totara Learn 101

Totara has features like customizable training modules, personalized learning plans, robust content management, and support for both online and blended learning. This versatility makes it an ideal solution for businesses fostering continuous learning and staff development. Key functionalities of Totara Learn include organizing learning hierarchically to match business structures, creating tailored learning plans linked to specific job roles, managing team performance, and authoring a diverse range of content.

Totara Learn also offers comprehensive assessment options, detailed reporting capabilities, efficient performance evaluations, audience-specific training configurations, and sophisticated compliance management tools. These features collectively ensure a holistic approach to corporate training. The benefits of using Totara Learn extend to engaging blended learning experiences, support for informal learning through social tools, the flexibility of an open platform, and access to a global network of expert partners.

Book a free demo and learn how Webanywhere can implement tailor made LMS solution for your organization.