• Introduction
  • User interface
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Cost
  • Summary

MATRIX vs. iSpring Learn

Introduction

This is a detailed comparison between MATRIX and iSpring Learn, taking into consideration the features, functionality, and cost of each platform.

MATRIX is a learning management system (LMS) for use by small and medium-sized businesses, as well as large corporations. MATRIX helps companies manage all training activities, such as creating and delivering training content, evaluating employee performance, training clients and partners, and selling online courses. MATRIX is a product of CYPHER LEARNING, a company that specializes in providing learning platforms for organizations around the world.

iSpring Learn is a product of iSpring solutions and it’s a cloud-hosted LMS with a basic set of tools for corporations that offer online training for their employees.

MATRIX Business portal

User interface

MATRIX has an intuitive, responsive design that looks sharp and automatically adjusts based on the type of device. It is easily customizable to match the company’s image, brand, and identity. iSpring Learn also offers the possibility to customize the portal but it has fewer options compared to MATRIX. MATRIX also has a unique “activity display” feature that indicates the level of activity within courses and groups using a pulsing indicator on their tiles together with real-time widgets that scroll through the latest activities.

MATRIX provides attractive tile-based dashboards for learners, instructors, and administrators, and a graphical resources catalog. The class and main admin dashboard can be customized with built-in widgets, ad-hoc reporting widgets, and custom HTML widgets.

iSpring Learn has a tile-based course catalog that is only available to learners. The catalog tiles have customizable images and offer a limited set of information such as the name of the category and the number of courses. The color of the tiles can’t be customized and the categories can’t be organized hierarchically with main and subcategories.

The iSpring Learn LMS learner dashboard, although it has a tile-based layout, is not as visually attractive as the MATRIX one. The tiles offer just a few course-related details such as the name of the course and the learner’s progress in the course. The administrator dashboard on iSpring Learn has a very simplistic design in comparison to the MATRIX admin dashboard. It isn’t customizable and you can’t add widgets to visualize important information. The dashboard only shows the number of courses, users, and groups and has separate sections for the latest content and assessments ready for evaluation.

MATRIX has a simple and intuitive pop-out navigation that makes it easy for users to go to any area of the platform.

In iSpring Learn, the navigation is quite simple and it's done via just a few tabs on the left bar.

MATRIX makes it easy to create beautiful courses and organize content, allowing users to display a row or tile layout. There is also a quick tile editor to change the image and color for each module. Each module can have a description and displays important information such as badges and certificates awarded, which modules are locked, and progress icons for each module.

In iSpring Learn, course content is displayed in the Outline page, which is similar to a table of contents for the course. Modules don’t have tiles and images, they only have a title and description. iSpring also has a separate course editor called iSpring Suite that works within PowerPoint. With this tool, users can quickly develop courses, quizzes, interactions, and dialogue simulations.

MATRIX offers support for 40+ languages, including right-to-left languages, and mobile apps for iOS and Android.

iSpring Learn supports 14 languages but there is no support for right-to-languages. It also doesn’t have accessibility features such as high contrast themes or underlined links as MATRIX does.

MATRIX Learner dashboard

Ease of use

MATRIX is very intuitive and easy to use. It also offers accessibility features and integrates with MS Immersive Reader that can increase the readability of content pages.

In addition, it includes an online help center with videos, getting started guides, and searchable help content. MATRIX also has a rapid response support forum where staff members typically respond to questions within 15-30 minutes during business hours 24/5.

iSpring Learn is fairly simple to use. You can only create accessible content with their separate content authoring tool iSpring Suite. The platform has an online help center, searchable help content, getting started videos, and a community forum.

MATRIX Help center

Features

MATRIX provides a much more extensive feature set than iSpring Learn. Although MATRIX offers a complete solution, it costs significantly less. iSpring Learn LMS is missing some powerful features such as Adaptive learning, E-commerce, Compliance, and more.

Creating courses

MATRIX offers a wide range of course options to help companies deliver the type of training that they need, whether it’s instructor-led, self-paced, blended, or micro learning.

iSpring Learn offers the possibility of adding just self-paced courses that can be configured to be Restricted or Free. In the case of Free courses, learners can go through the class as they wish. If the course is Restricted, learners have to take modules one-by-one. Courses in iSpring Learn can be set up to suit microlearning needs.

Both MATRIX and iSpring use a tagging system that makes it easy to differentiate courses for specific target audiences. Users can use the tags to search for courses that are relevant to them. However the MATRIX tag-based search is more sophisticated, it allows users to search for multiple tags at once and a Tags filter is also available.

Evaluating performance

MATRIX offers 15 types of assessments, including quizzes, surveys, Dropbox, LTI, discussions, essays, and more. There is also a possibility to add question banks that can be reused in multiple quizzes and surveys. These questions can be tagged and used with additional completion requirements for quizzes. Instructors can easily see a centralized view of learners’ scores, quickly add results, and make changes through the Scores tab.

iSpring Learn instructors can only evaluate learners’ understanding of a course through a free form assessment or they can add multiple choice, multiple response, and type-in questions to longreads. There is no equivalent to the Scores table in iSpring Learn.

Tracking progress

In MATRIX, analytics allows instructors to view useful information such as the overall progress of learners and the progress of individual learners through modules, assessments, mastery, and more. The ad-hoc reporting feature allows users to select the data that they want to report on such as users, classes, paths, organizations, awards, and more. These reports can be customized further by selecting a variety of fields, using filtering options, by sorting and grouping data based on different parameters, and choosing multiple chart outputs.

In iSpring Learn, you can run course reports on individual learners and you have access to people reports that show how many points users have in the game. You can also run reports that show progress achievement, assessment answer breakdown, event attendance, and more.

iSpring Learn also offers the option of custom report capabilities but users have to contact the company and ask for these custom reports separately. There is no competency-based learning and mastery tracking in iSpring Learn.

Collaboration and communication

MATRIX makes it easy for learners and instructors to communicate, encouraging collaboration between users with tools such as chat, built-in messaging with bidirectional email integration, the option to add users as friends, forums, groups, social networking, and blogs.

With MATRIX it is easy to schedule and host online meetings and web conferences since our platform integrates with tools such as Zoom, GoToMeeting, GoToTraining, MS Teams, Google Meet, and more.

Compared to this, iSpring Learn only offers the Zoom integration for web conferencing. For communication purposes between users, iSpring Learn offers only a messaging feature in their LMS where learners can message instructors if they have questions regarding the course.

Engagement

MATRIX makes learning more engaging through features such as automation, gamification, and adaptive learning. iSpring Learn has a simple gamification feature and learners can be part of a single site-wide game where they can gather points for completing tasks. The badges are awarded when learners achieve a certain number of points. There isn’t an option to add multiple games, and there are no separate games for individual courses.

In iSpring Learn, users can only add rules that manage course availability, award points, badges, certificates to learners, and send automatic notifications. These are very limited options considering that in MATRIX, users can add rules to many areas of the platform such as courses, groups, e-commerce, mastery, accounts, and more.

In iSpring Learn, gamification consists of points and badges that are awarded when learners reach a number of points. In comparison, the MATRIX gamification feature is much more flexible, as users can earn points and badges by completing tasks in courses, learning paths, and overall in the platform.

On both sites, there is a badge gallery that can be used when creating badges. Compared to iSpring Learn, MATRIX has more built-in badges in the gallery and also offers an interactive badge builder.

MATRIX users can enable public profiles where they can show their contact details, learning achievements, game points and badges, their certificates, friends list, and more. This feature isn’t available in iSpring Learn.

Personalization

The MATRIX automation feature makes training and learning more flexible by allowing users to trigger actions in courses, modules, sections, scores, assessments, learning paths, goals, groups, game levels, accounts, mastery, and e-commerce.

iSpring Learn supports a basic form of automation. You can add rules that moderate course availability, rules that award points in the game, and badges when learners achieve a certain number of points.

For example in MATRIX, when a learner completes a course or a learning path, you can choose a rule to add them to a group by going to Course configuration. In iSpring Learn, you can only add rules for certain processes such as passing tests, completing theoretical documents, and completing courses.

In MATRIX, you can use the adaptive learning feature, which is based on automation, to dynamically personalize what content and assessments learners see in courses depending on their performance. iSpring Learn doesn’t have an adaptive learning feature.

Selling courses

MATRIX offers integrated e-commerce functionality and allows users to sell courses, learning paths, bundles, subscriptions, and digital media. MATRIX also provides a wide range of options for marketing learning content, such as course reviews, MailChimp integration, and SEO features.

iSpring Learn doesn’t have an e-commerce feature, a public course catalog, or the option to sell courses.

Here are the features included in MATRIX that are not supported by iSpring Learn:

User interface

  • Automatic translation of messages and forum posts
  • Graphical resources catalog
  • Scores tab
  • Customizable Dashboard widgets
  • Activity display

Content

  • Debate, team, Dropbox, LTI, discussion, attendance, H5P, Google Assignments, and offline assignment types
  • Course templates
  • Instructor-led and Blended learning
  • Adaptive learning
  • Archiving courses
  • Drip content
  • Question banks
  • Peer-reviewed assignments
  • Tagging resources, users, and groups

Collaboration

  • Social networking
  • Built-in messaging with bidirectional email integration
  • Course forum
  • Course blog
  • Wikis
  • Public blog

E-commerce and marketing tools

  • Selling courses
  • Selling digital media
  • Selling subscription plans
  • Selling course bundles
  • SEO features
  • Course reviews
  • Purchase orders

Integrations

  • Integration with your own email server
  • Integration with 1,500+ apps via Zapier
  • MailChimp
  • CCF and QTI standards
  • Panopto
  • CometChat
  • G Suite SSO
  • OneDrive
  • Office 365
  • Equella
  • Google Drive
  • MathJax
  • Salesforce
  • H5P
  • MS Immersive Reader
  • MS OneNote
  • Udemy

Web conferencing tools

  • GoToMeeting
  • GoToTraining
  • WebEx
  • Kaltura
  • MS Teams
  • Google Meet

Payment gateways

  • PayPal and PayPal Payments Pro
  • Stripe
  • Authorize.net
  • PayUbiz
  • PayU Latam
  • PagSeguro
  • Flywire

Other

  • Trash can for restoring deleted items
  • Archiving learners
  • Resell under your own brand

MATRIX Course catalog

Cost

MATRIX LMS plans range from $249/month for 50 active learners (yearly billing), to $2,999/month for 3,500 active learners. There are no setup fees, cancellation fees, storage fees, bandwidth fees, support fees, or other hidden costs. MATRIX offers advanced features, such as full e-commerce functionality in each of the pricing plans.

iSpring Learn pricing ranges from $366/month for 100 active users to $1410/ month for 500 users, yearly billing. They offer a custom plan as well. In comparison to iSpring Learn, MATRIX only costs $999/month for 500 users, yearly billing.

MATRIX Course page

Summary

This was a comparison of the most important feature differences between MATRIX and iSpring Learn.

MATRIX is a better alternative to iSpring Learn and a more cost-effective solution for training employees, clients, and partners, and it also offers the possibility of selling online courses to external audiences.

If you require additional information on MATRIX, please contact us at sales@cypherlearning.com.

Disclaimer

This comparison paper was written in August 2020 based on publicly available documentation on both vendors' sites. It was prepared as a guide and is not intended to be exhaustive. The comparison information is for guidance only and does not constitute any contractual representation, warranty or obligation on our part. Liability for errors, omissions or consequential loss is expressly disclaimed.

Since pricing and features can change rapidly, we do not represent that this information is up-to-date, and we encourage you to get the latest information directly from the vendor's web site. If you find any information in this comparison guide to be inaccurate, please contact us with details and we will correct the information within 72hrs.