Category Archives: Web 2.0 in Enterprise Learning

Benefits of Experience API, xAPI and Tin Can API in eLearning Systems

Benefits of Experience API, xAPI and Tin Can API in eLearning, content learning systems. The Most Comprehensive eLearning Content and Learning Systems.

Experience API, xAPI and Tin Can API
Benefits of Experience API, xAPI and Tin Can API in eLearning Systems

Technology standards are critical to the success of eLearning industry and projects so the learning content and data is interoperable between different systems. Sharable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM) is a widely accepted technical standard for online learning that was developed by the US DoD’s Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) initiative in the late nineties.

 API, xAPI and Tin Can API for eLearning Content Management Systems

What is SCORM?

SCORM essentially defines the relationship between course components, data models, and protocols so that content “objects” are sharable across systems that conform to the SCORM model. The various versions of SCORM offer the benefits of packaging content and exchanging data at run time.SCORM has been designed for online learning between a single user and the learning system. It offers standardization of learning content packaging and its delivery. The latest version, SCORM 2004, also offers a sequencing and navigation option. However, SCORM is a reference model and not really a standard and it has many limitations. Tracking of users is limited with SCORM and it can only handle web-based lessons delivered through a web browser, limiting the possibility and flexibility of learning through mobile or other modern devices.

The Advent of TinCan API or xAPI

More recently, ADL developed TinCan API (now known as Experience API or xAPI for short) under Project Tin Can to provide a better and more improved platform for online learning. xAPI facilitate data interoperability between learning systems, enterprise systems and more dynamic, flexible, and engaging content without many of the limitations of SCORM or other learning specifications.With xAPI, there has been a great shift and flexibility in the way online learning works. Content resources can reside anywhere and do not need to be located at the same domain or server as the Learning Management System (content delivery systems). So you can have learning resources on your mobile (for example, as a downloadable mobile app) or any website. Additionally, it is now possible to report multiple scores, obtain detailed test results, and also have improved security of data. Experience API can track any learning experience without a web browser or internet connection, opening up limitless possibilities for learning on the go.Tracking of a user’s (or multiple users’) learning patterns or behavior is simple and quick with xAPI. Moreover, the tracked data is portable and the activity records can be stored in a Learning Record Store (LRS). This LRS can then be integrated with an LMS or other systems in the organization, making the learning experience more meaningful and quantifiable. In fact, the tracking capability of xAPI can include all learner experiences and experiential data can be easily collected from social media, job locations, classrooms, apps, performance tools, and knowledge bases, to name a few.The blended learning and adaptive learning domains are gaining immensely by leveraging xAPI. xAPI can support existing SCORM use cases as well as enable use cases that were difficult to meet with SCORM. Mobile learning and access of content from anywhere is possible with xAPI’s dynamic features.While Experience API (xAPI) is not the most comprehensive eLearning content and learning systems technical specification, but ability to communicate learner’s activities and experiences flexibly is a step in the right direction.

Responsive Design for Delivering eLearning on Multiple Devices

Responsive Design for Delivering eLearning on Multiple Devices like Tabs, ipads, Smart Phones and Desk tops. Responsive Design for Learning Management System Interface.

Delivering eLearning on Multiple Devices
Responsive Design for Delivering eLearning on Multiple Devices

Would you like to deliver eLearning that only works on One Device or on Multiple Devices?

The New Rule is responsive eLearning design – “One version that works on all devices

What is “responsive design?”

When used about technology in 2013, “responsive” means that a program, website, or application works on any device you want to use, without any extra effort on your part. Since we started using smart phones, and then tablets, you as a user had to download different versions of a program to your phone, your tablet, and your PC. These different applications rarely worked exactly the same on each device. Sometimes, they behaved very differently. Sometimes, text was tiny, or images were too large, or you only saw the menu and not the content.

If it was a headache for you as a user, can you imagine what a headache it was for the developer? In addition to phones, tablets, and computers, developers had to create programs all over again for Windows, Android, and the Apple systems! Sometimes, a provider like Instancy had to keep track of NINE different versions of their software and eLearning content!

Authors developing eLearning content had similar challenges, making sure their e-courses were designed for the systems that learners used.

Now, Instancy has implemented intelligent responsive design, so that eLearning courses created on Instancy Learning Content Management System (LCMS) and delivered through the Instancy platform are offered in appropriate formats for the devices used by your learners.

Responsive Design in eLearning, delivering eLearning Content for a Multi Devices

HTML5:  not a magic bullet

HTML is one of the languages that makes the internet work. It controls how words and images are displayed on your browser screen.

HTML5, the newest version of this language, allows web-based applications like Instancy to work seamlessly across all your devices. Interactive content provided inside these applications, such as audio and video files, will play on your device the same way it plays on your laptop.

However, taking advantage of the responsive design features supported by HTML5 is not as easy as flipping a switch. Responsive design suggests that content be displayed appropriately on the target device, not simply resized for a small screen. For example, Apple devices won’t display Flash-based animation, so content delivered by Flash must be provided in a different form.

This is an enormous change, although our end users may not ever notice that their applications work better across the multiple devices they use to access mobile learning.

We in the eLearning industry have already seen the benefits. However, we think that it is the Instancy Authoring Tool users who will really notice and be able to benefit from responsive design as implemented in Instancy. Thanks to HTML5, learners will be able to enjoy interactive eLearning content across all their devices. The door is open for the next revolution of our industry: the mLearning (for Mobile Learning) revolution.

Enable Dynamic Content Resizing

Figure 1: Enable Dynamic Content Resizing

To begin taking advantage of what HTML5 and Intelligent Responsive Design can do for your course development work, use the new Enable Dynamic Content Resizing option within the Instancy Authoring Tool. Thanks to this new option, your eLearning content will be automatically resized to fit any of the multiple devices your learners use.

We have already implemented the new technology in the learning management system (LMS). All devices (PC/Laptop browser, Tablet or Smartphone) can access the LMS. Once your course is uploaded to the catalog, it will be accessible on all devices without any additional work on your part.

In the image below you can see how the catalog page adapts to desktop, iPad and iPhone

Responsive Design for Learning Management System Interface

Figure 2: Responsive Design for Learning Management System Interface

 

Example of Responsive Design

Figure 3: Example of Responsive Design. 

Notice in the figure above that the image is automatically sized correctly for the screen, rather than cropped the way it might have been before HTML5.

At Instancy, we will continue to add HTML5-based innovations throughout our system.  If you’d like to learn more, please contact us at info@instancy.com If you simply want to stay on top of what we’re doing, sign up for our newsletter at the link to the right.