Looking for an online learning platform to manage your courses can be daunting. With so many options, deciding which will meet your needs is tough.
Two of the most popular Learning Management Systems (LMS) are Thinkific and Canvas. While both offer an intuitive and user-friendly platform to host and manage your e-learning content, they have unique features that set them apart.
In this article, we’ll compare Thinkific and Canvas LMS, highlighting the similarities and differences between the two platforms to help you choose the right one for your needs. By the end of this article, you’ll better understand which platform will work best for your e-learning needs, whether you’re an educator, a coach, or a business owner.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Features and Functionality
Regarding features and functionality, Thinkific and Canvas offer a range of tools and capabilities to create and manage online courses.
Thinkific’s features include:
- Course Creation: Thinkific offers a variety of course creation tools, including multimedia support, customizable templates, and the ability to add quizzes, surveys, and assignments.
- Marketing and Sales: Thinkific offers built-in marketing tools, like creating coupons, promotions, and discounts. It also integrates with popular payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe.
- Student Management: Thinkific provides various features to manage student data, including the ability to create student groups, manage enrollments, and access data and insights.
- Integrations: Thinkific integrates with various third-party tools, including email marketing services, analytics tools, and customer relationship management software.
On the other hand, Canvas’s features include:
- Course Creation: Canvas offers a range of course creation tools, including multimedia support, course templates, and the ability to create assignments, quizzes, and discussions.
- Collaborative Tools: Canvas offers a range of tools for students and instructors to collaborate and engage with each other, including real-time chat, discussion boards, and video conferencing.
- Gradebook: Canvas provides a comprehensive grade book for instructors to track and manage student grades, assignments, and assessments.
- Integrations: Canvas offers integrations with third-party tools, including plagiarism detection software, lecture capture tools, and web conferencing platforms.
While both platforms offer similar features, there are some differences in how they implement them. For example, Thinkific is more geared toward course creation and marketing, while Canvas emphasizes collaboration and assessment.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Ease of Use
Thinkific has a clean and intuitive user interface, making it easy for instructors to create and manage courses. The platform offers drag-and-drop functionality and an easy-to-use course builder that allows instructors to add various course elements like videos, quizzes, and surveys. The interface is also customizable, enabling users to tailor the look and feel of their course to suit their brand.
On the other hand, Canvas has a more complex interface due to its range of tools and functionalities. It may take new users some time to get used to the navigation system and determine the features’ location. However, once users are familiar with the platform, it provides flexibility and customization options.
Regarding different types of users, both platforms cater to a wide range of needs. For example, Thinkific is suitable for educators who want to create and sell courses online, coaches who want to create courses for clients, and businesses who want to train their employees. Conversely, Canvas is geared towards K-12 and higher education institutions, providing tools for course delivery, assessment, and collaboration.
Overall, both Thinkific and Canvas are user-friendly platforms, but the learning curve may be steeper for Canvas due to its range of functionalities. In contrast, Thinkific is more straightforward and customizable, making it a better fit for small businesses and entrepreneurs who want to create courses quickly and easily.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Pricing and Plans
Pricing is a significant consideration when selecting an e-learning platform, as costs can vary depending on the features offered and the size of your organization. Here’s a comparison of Thinkific and Canvas regarding their pricing and plans.
Thinkific offers four pricing plans, starting with the Free plan, which includes unlimited courses, students, and hosting. The Basic plan, which starts at $49 per month, includes additional features such as coupons, email integrations, and course upsells. The Start plan costs $99 per month and includes advanced features such as certificates, assignments, and membership sites. Finally, the Growth plan, which starts at $499 per month, includes the ability to remove all Thinkific branding and priority support.
Canvas offers a more flexible pricing model, with different pricing structures for K-12 schools, higher education institutions, and businesses. For K-12 and higher education institutions, pricing is based on the number of active users per year, with a minimum of 500 users. For businesses, pricing is based on the number of monthly active users. Canvas also s a free-for-teacher plan with basic features such as course creation, grading, and communication tools.
When comparing the two platforms, Thinkific’s pricing is more straightforward and suited for starting small businesses and entrepreneurs. In contrast, Canvas’s pricing model is more complex but allows for greater scalability and customization for larger institutions.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Integrations and Add-Ons
Integrations and add-ons can enhance the functionality of an e-learning platform, allowing users to integrate with other tools they use regularly. Here’s a comparison of Thinkific and Canvas regarding their integrations and add-ons.
Thinkific offers integrations with various tools, including popular payment gateways, email marketing tools, and course authoring software. It also offers an extensive App Store where users can browse and add third-party apps to their courses. Some of the most popular integrations include Mailchimp, Zapier, and Shopify.
Canvas offers integrations with many tools, including popular learning tools such as Turnitin, Respondus, and Proctorio. The LMS platform also offers a powerful API that allows for custom integrations.
When comparing the two platforms, Thinkific’s integrations are focused more on marketing and payment processing, while Canvas’s integrations are focused more on enhancing the learning experience. Canvas offers a robust API for custom integrations, while Thinkific’s App Store offers more pre-built integrations.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Customer Support and Resources
For e-learning platforms to provide an excellent user experience, customer support, and resources are crucial. Here’s a comparison of Thinkific and Canvas regarding their customer support and resources.
Thinkific provides extensive resources to help users get started, including the Thinkific Help Center with detailed articles and videos, webinars, and a community forum where users can ask questions and get answers from other Thinkific users. Thinkific also offers email support to all users and phone support to those on their higher plans.
Canvas also provides an extensive knowledge base with detailed articles and videos, webinars, and a community forum where users can ask questions and get answers from other Canvas users. Canvas offers all users 24/7 phone and email support and chat support during business hours.
Comparing the two platforms, Canvas offers more comprehensive support with 24/7 phone and email support and chat support during business hours. However, Thinkific’s support resources focus on helping users get started and providing a community forum where users can help each other.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Pros and Cons
Regarding Thinkific and Canvas LMS, both platforms have their strengths and weaknesses. Here are some pros and cons to consider for each platform based on the previous sections:
- Easy-to-use platform with a simple interface and navigation
- Offers a variety of customization options and tools for course creation and design
- Provides an extensive range of marketing and sales features
- Robust support for creating and selling online courses
- Provides several pricing options, including a free plan
- Limited in terms of integrations and add-ons compared to other platforms
- Has fewer advanced features, making it less suitable for larger organizations
- Limited in terms of assessment tools and features
Canvas LMS Pros
- Comprehensive feature set with a range of tools for educators and learners
- Highly customizable platform with an extensive range of integrations and add-ons
- Provides several options for assessment, grading, and feedback
- Suitable for a range of educational institutions, from K-12 to higher education
- Offers a wide range of resources and support options for users
Canvas LMS Cons
- It can be complex and difficult to navigate, especially for new users.
- It can be time-consuming to set up and customize the platform.
- Pricing can be expensive for smaller organizations or individuals.
Thinkific vs. Canvas: Conclusion
In conclusion, Thinkific and Canvas LMS are great e-learning platforms with strengths and weaknesses that cater to different use cases and requirements. Thinkific has a more streamlined and intuitive user interface, which makes it a good fit for those who want to create and sell online courses quickly and easily. Conversely, Canvas offers a more robust and customizable platform suitable for educational institutions or corporate training programs.
In terms of features, Thinkific has a better content management system, while Canvas offers more robust assessment and grading tools. Regarding pricing, Thinkific offers a more flexible pricing structure, while Canvas has more competitive pricing for educational institutions.
Both platforms offer integrations and add-ons. Thinkific has a more extensive list of integrations, while Canvas LMS offers more advanced integrations with other educational technologies. Lastly, both platforms offer excellent customer support and resources, with Thinkific providing more extensive resources and customer support than Canvas.
Ultimately, the choice between Thinkific and Canvas LMS depends on the user’s requirements, use case, and budget. Those who prioritize ease of use and speed in creating and selling courses may prefer Thinkific, while those who need a more customizable platform with advanced assessment tools may opt for Canvas.