Learning Model Canvas


Get to know the 9 blocks of the Learning Model Canvas in this short video (4 minutes) and start using the LMC today.


The Learning Model Canvas is a visual decision-making tool for project teams creating any type of learning material.

A free 45 page pdf booklet that introduces the Learning Model Canvas.

(PDF 6.2 MB)

A print version of the LMC Poster with full block names.

(PDF 65 KB)

A print version of the LMC Poster with abbreviated block names.

(PDF 63 KB)

"The LMC works whatever the size of your learning project, team, project management method or instructional design strategy... and it's free!"

9 building-blocks

The LMC is a canvas on which you paint your knowledge, questions, ideas, actions and decisions. It is made up of nine building-blocks.

PG - Performance Gaps

PG is the central building-block on the canvas. It is the focal point from which your learning project begins. The reason companies create learning products is to close the gap between their staff's current level of performance and the required level of performance. The better you understand and clarify the performance gaps, the better the learning material you will create.

The company's point of view

A learning project first needs to understand the company's point-of-view - you plot this in the PG block. In other blocks on the canvas we will take the point-of-view of the leaner but in this block we explore why learning is required.

* The LMC is an adaptation of the Business Model Canvas by Strategyzer.

UP - User Profiles

Performance gaps happen to people doing real jobs and you need to identify who those people are by creating User Profiles. More than one profile may be required for your project. Add as much to the profile as you need, such as, demographic data, learning capability, technology information.

Tip: give each user profile a persona so you can refer to it in your conversations.

CA - Content Analysis

Once you know who your learners will be (UP) and identified their specific learning gaps (PG) you can begin thinking about the type of learning material to create and plot it in the CA block. The CA block is about analysing the subject content to understand, how, why, where, when, who and what may be causing performance issues.

Tip: PG + UP = CA

LO - Learning Objectives

When CA work is complete you can begin to plot the learning objectives block. Once you have finished defining the objectives you now have a starting point for creating your learning material, for example using a storyboard to create an eLearning session.

Tip: PG + UP + CA = LO

KR - Key Resources

Use this block to identify the key resources you will need to create your learning material. The resources will be a mix of financial, human, intellectual, technical and physical assets that will be required at different times throughout the project's lifetime. The KA block is the sibling of this block and cousin of the KP block.

Tip: plot only those people who are directly working on this learning project.

KA - Key Activities

Above the KR block on the canvas is Key Activities. Plot in the KA block the most important activities your project's key resources must do to deliver the learning project and by when they must do those activities. The KA and KR blocks are the cousins of the KP block.

Tip: think of the KR and KA blocks as plotting the who (KR) and the what (KP) on the canvas.

KP - Key Partners

The KP block is used to identify the main external resources you will need to create your learning material and the internal stakeholders you may need to report to throughout the project. Typically, external partners will be suppliers of Learning Management Systems or learning content developers; internal partners are bosses or executives that need regular updates on the progress of the project.

Tip: some of these partners will become part of your project team (e.g. an Instructional Designer).

C$ - Cost Structure

Use the CS block to plot costs that will be incurred throughout the project. Information plotted in other blocks clarify the total financial investment needed to complete the project. Knowing costs is vital for the whole team.

Tip: the best opening question to ask for this block is, ''How can we make the best possible learning for the money invested?'


The bottom two blocks of the canvas are about investment. The left-block plots the financial investment while the right-block's focus is on metrics, that is, measuring  and evaluating the value of investment.

ROI - Return on Investment

This block is about measurement and evaluation. This falls into four main categories we call, the 4Ps: Performance (business gains); Product (learning gains); Prototype (quality assuring learning activities); Project (evaluating project progress).

Tip: the best opening question to ask for this block is, 'What does success look like?'

Plot your project's S - T - O - R - Y

When we create any learning material we build-in a structure, a narrative - a story. The same is true when we run a learning project - we create a story.

Every story has a plot and a plot is defined as, 'a series of interrelated sequence of events.' The nine building-blocks of the LMC are the 'interrelated sequence of events' - each sticky note added to a block is part of the plot. Every learning project is a story consisting of five sub-plots, we call this, S-T-O-R-Y. Each sub-plot can be plotted on one canvas or you can decide to use multiple canvases, one (or more) per each sub-plot.


The five sub-plots of a learning project

  1. Strategical questions - start with the 'Big Picture', the vision, the desired outcome of the project.
  2. Tactical questions - make your vision a reality by planning i.e. break the Big Picture into smaller chunks.
  3. Operational questions - follow the plan and do the work.
  4. Reporting questions - measure and evaluate the learning material and project.
  5. You-centred questions - identify what knowledge, skills and behaviours you need throughout the project.


If you want to know more about the LMC or Spinks eMedia email us and we will arrange for a free 30-minute consultation on how you can implement the LMC for your project.