User-Generated Learning Content | pros & cons

User-Generated Content leverages Knowledge Management

User-generated learning content in companies can be a powerful tool for enhancing knowledge management. Employees share their expertise while also improving their own learning. However, its successful implementation necessitates a strategic approach, investment in technology and competencies, and a balanced focus on quality and quantity.

In this article, we explore the benefits, challenges, and considerations of integrating user-generated learning content into corporate knowledge management strategies.

Knowledge from the Source

In summary, knowledge management in companies is of crucial importance to remain competitive, foster innovation, and enhance efficiency. It is a continuous process that requires the integration of technology, cultural change, and strategic alignment. In this context, user-generated learning content is gaining significance as it provides a means to capture and share internal knowledge, thereby strengthening an organization's learning and innovation capabilities.


Knowledge Management

Knowledge management is a critical aspect for the success of companies, especially in a rapidly changing knowledge society. Here are some important considerations regarding the significance of knowledge management in companies:



  1. Knowledge as a Strategic Asset: In today's economy, companies heavily rely on knowledge. Knowledge about products, processes, customers, and markets is a strategic asset. Effective knowledge management helps in capturing, preserving, and utilizing this knowledge.
  2. Promotion of Innovation: Companies that manage their knowledge well are better positioned to drive innovation. By having access to internal and external knowledge, they can develop new ideas and adapt quickly to changing market conditions.
  3. Enhancement of Efficiency: Knowledge management contributes to avoiding redundancies and using information more efficiently. Employees can access relevant information more quickly and make decisions on a more informed basis.
  4. Learning Organizations: Companies practicing knowledge management are often referred to as "learning organizations." They promote continuous learning and knowledge exchange among employees at all levels.
  5. Risk Mitigation: A well-established knowledge management system helps minimize the risk of knowledge loss due to employee turnover or unexpected changes.
  6. Cultural Change: Implementing effective knowledge management often requires a cultural change within the company. This may involve promoting knowledge sharing and collaboration.
  7. Technology as a Tool: Technology plays a crucial role in knowledge management. Companies often use knowledge management software to organize, share, and search for content.


Effective knowledge management is crucial for addressing the challenges and opportunities of user-generated learning content. This includes:

1. Curation: The careful selection, review, and updating of content to ensure it is accurate, up-to-date, and of high quality.

2. Contextualization: Embedding user-generated content within the overall context of individual learning objectives. Features of Learning Experience Platforms can support this.

3. Accessibility: Ensuring that created content can be easily found and used, regardless of the authoring tools used. A flexible Learning Management System for administration and a learning platform for publishing are essential for this purpose.

pros & cons


  1. Diversity: User-generated content covers a wide range of topics and perspectives, resulting in a diverse and comprehensive knowledge base.
  2. Actuality: Since learners and educators can constantly share new information, user-generated content is often more up-to-date than traditional teaching materials.
  3. Engagement: Involving learners in content creation enhances engagement and motivation.


  1. Quality: The quality of user-generated content can vary significantly, posing a risk of misinformation and inaccurate representations.
  2. Curation Expense: Ensuring that user-generated content is of high quality and up-to-date requires careful curation, including content review, correction, and updates.
  3. Copyright Issues: The use of user-generated content can raise copyright issues if not properly addressed and attributed.




The creation of user-generated learning content requires some basic prerequisites:

  1. Access to technology: Learners and educators must have access to the necessary technical infrastructure to create and share content. This includes computers, internet access, and software tools.
  2. Digital competence: The ability to use digital tools and create content online is crucial. This requires training and support for those who may not have advanced technical skills.
  3. Collaborative platforms: Platforms and tools that facilitate collaboration and the exchange of learning content are essential. These could take the form of social media, e-learning platforms, or other online communities.



The availability of technology is a crucial factor in the creation and management of user-generated learning content. Here are some additional aspects to consider:

  1. Content Creation Tools: User-friendly content creation tools and platforms empower learners and educators to generate and share content easily. These tools can range from simple text editors to sophisticated multimedia authoring software.

  2. Collaboration Features: Technology can facilitate collaboration among learners and educators in content creation. Features such as real-time editing, commenting, and version control can enhance the collaborative process.

  3. Content Sharing Platforms: Learning management systems (LMS), content management systems (CMS), and online learning platforms play a pivotal role in hosting, organizing, and distributing user-generated content. These platforms should offer seamless integration with content creation tools.

  4. Data Analytics: Technology enables the collection and analysis of data related to user-generated content. This data can be used to assess content quality, learner engagement, and the impact of user-generated materials on learning outcomes.

  5. Security and Privacy: Protecting user-generated content and user data is paramount. Robust security measures and privacy controls are necessary to safeguard both the content and the individuals involved in its creation.

  6. Scalability: Technology should support the scalability of user-generated content initiatives, allowing for the growth of content libraries and user participation without significant technical constraints.

  7. Training and Support: Providing training and technical support for learners and educators using content creation tools and platforms is essential to maximize the benefits of user-generated content.

  8. Feedback Mechanisms: Technology can facilitate feedback loops, enabling users to provide input on content quality and relevance, leading to continuous improvement.

  9. Content Moderation: Implementing moderation mechanisms for user-generated content can help filter out inappropriate or low-quality materials, maintaining a positive learning environment.

Incorporating technology effectively into the process of creating, managing, and using user-generated learning content can greatly enhance the educational experience and the overall quality of the content itself.


knowledge management

Formats of User-Generated Learning Content

User-generated content can be created in various formats, with the level of effort involved varying accordingly.

  1. Text: This includes blogs, forums, wikis, and eBooks. Text-based content is easily accessible and straightforward to create.
  2. Audio: Podcasts and audio courses are gaining popularity as they make learning content accessible to those who prefer listening over reading.
  3. Video: Platforms like YouTube are rich in user-generated video content. Persons create tutorials, explanatory videos, and lectures. It has to be decided, whether a general publication makes sense or the content should be shared exclusively on the corporation's learning platform.
  4. Images and Infographics: Visual representations can simplify complex concepts and promote visual learning.

Digital & Didactic Competencies:

The creation of user-generated learning content requires a set of digital and didactic competencies, which, in combination with subject matter expertise, enable successful implementation. Here are some of the essential skills and knowledge required:

Digital Competencies:

  1. Media Literacy: The ability to understand, select, and effectively use various media formats to convey information. This includes text, images, videos, and audio.

  2. Technical Skills: Mastery of the necessary technologies and tools for creating digital content, including software applications, content management systems, and multimedia editors.

  3. Multimedia Production Knowledge: The ability to create multimedia elements such as graphics, animations, and videos and integrate them into learning materials.

  4. Online Communication: The ability to communicate online and collaborate on projects, whether in social media, e-learning platforms, or other digital environments.

  5. Information Management: The ability to research, organize, and evaluate information to create high-quality learning content.

Didactic Competencies:

  1. Formulation of Learning Objectives: The ability to define clear and achievable learning objectives that align with the needs of the learners.

  2. Curriculum Design: Understanding how learning content can be integrated into a broader curriculum to create coherent learning pathways.

  3. Teaching Methods: Knowledge of various teaching and learning methods to deliver content in an engaging and effective manner.

  4. Evaluation and Feedback: The ability to monitor learning progress, conduct evaluations, and adjust learning materials based on feedback.

  5. Adaptability: Willingness to adapt to different learning styles and needs and customize learning content accordingly.

  6. Pedagogical Theories: An understanding of pedagogical theories and models that can be considered when designing learning content.

It is important to emphasize that digital and didactic competencies, combined with subject matter expertise, play a key role in the creation of user-generated learning content. Only when these various skills and knowledge areas merge can learning materials be created that are informative, effective, and engaging for learners. Therefore, a holistic approach that combines technical knowledge with pedagogical expertise is crucial for success in creating user-generated learning content.

Companies that wish to promote the creation of user-generated learning content are well advised to support employees in developing these competencies.


Why Companies hesitate

There are several reasons why companies may hesitate or decide against allowing users of a Learning Management System (LMS) to create and distribute their own learning content through the LMS:

  1. Quality Control: Companies often want to ensure that the provided learning content is of high quality and accuracy. Allowing users to create unverified content can pose the risk of disseminating erroneous or unauthorized information.

  2. Compliance and Legal Considerations: Certain industries and companies are subject to stringent legal regulations and compliance requirements. User-generated content could potentially violate these regulations and create legal risks for the company.

  3. Consistency in Training Material: Companies often place a high value on consistent training materials to ensure that all employees receive the same information. User-generated content might compromise uniformity and lead to confusion.

  4. Confidentiality and Security: Companies may have concerns regarding the security and confidentiality of corporate data and information. Allowing user-generated content could jeopardize sensitive information.

  5. Lack of Expertise: Not all users possess the necessary expertise to create high-quality and effective learning content. Poorly designed or pedagogically unsound content could adversely affect the learning experience.

  6. Administrative and Maintenance Overhead: Managing and maintaining user-generated content can entail additional administrative work. Companies may need to allocate resources for reviewing, updating, and archiving content.

  7. Focus on Core Content: Companies often prefer to concentrate on their core competencies and content rather than taking on the creation and management of a wide array of user-generated content.

  8. Quality Assurance and Training: Companies often rely on specially trained or certified trainers to ensure that training content meets standards and achieves desired learning objectives. User-generated content may not necessarily meet these standards.

It's important to note that the decision of whether to allow users to create and distribute content or not is made by companies based on their specific requirements and goals. In some cases, it may make sense to provide users with this opportunity, while in others, strict controls and restrictions may be necessary.


Learning Management System as a Center

A Learning Management System (LMS) alone cannot fully address the challenges of user-generated learning content. Authoring tools integrated into LMS typically offer only a limited range of media and learning formats that can be created.

Of course, it is advantageous if simple learning content and tests can be quickly and easily created using the LMS. However, for multimedia, pedagogically sophisticated content, the use of professional authoring tools is recommended.

More importantly, the implemented LMS should be capable of managing and delivering content from various authoring tools seamlessly. This allows for greater flexibility and diversity in the creation and management of learning materials.


Software Products for user-generated Content

There are many software products that offer opportunities for creating user-generated learning content in companies. The choice should depend on the specific requirements and goals of the company.

In addition to the suitability of the content creation features, integration into the learning landscape (specifically the Learning Management System, learning portals, and learning platforms) is a crucial selection criterion.

Examples include:

  • Wikis: Wiki software such as MediaWiki or Confluence can be used to build collaborative knowledge databases where employees can create and edit content.

  • E-Learning Authoring Tools: Tools like Articulate Storyline, Adobe Captivate, and Camtasia enable the creation of interactive e-learning courses and the integration of user-generated content.

  • Learning Management Systems (LMS): Platforms like TCmanager® LMS allow companies to create their own learning modules that users can access and, if necessary, add their own content.

  • Social Media Platforms: Platforms like Yammer, Slack, or Teams facilitate not only collaboration but also knowledge sharing and the creation of learning resources.

  • Collaboration Tools: Tools like Google Docs, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox Paper, or Notion simplify collaboration on documents and enable employees to work together on training materials.

  • Interactive Online Platforms: Platforms like Kahoot! or Quizlet enable the creation of interactive quizzes and learning games that make learning engaging.

  • Crowdsourcing Platforms: Companies can use platforms like IdeaScale to collect and evaluate ideas and suggestions from employees for training content.

These software products offer diverse possibilities for creating and managing user-generated learning content in companies, with the choice depending on the specific requirements and goals of the company.


Conclusion: User-Generated Learning Content

The creation of user-generated learning content in companies is a logical idea to promote knowledge management. On the one hand, it enables employee participation, allowing them to share their expertise while enhancing their own learning. This strengthens knowledge exchange and internal expertise.

On the other hand, this initiative requires technological platforms and the development of competencies in content creation and management. Resources must be allocated to establish the technology infrastructure and provide training.

However, companies should carefully consider whether implementation makes sense for them. It requires a clear strategy and an appropriate budget. Overemphasizing user-generated content can compromise the quality of learning materials, while too little emphasis may miss opportunities for knowledge dissemination.

Overall, user-generated learning content creation offers the potential to promote knowledge management but requires a balanced investment in technology and competencies for successful implementation.


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