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SCORM in Plain English


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A walk-through the basic what and how of SCORM.

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SCORM in Plain English

  1. 1. in plain English for the rest of us
  2. 2. Welcome to SCORM in plain English. A  basic  introduction  to  this  word  that  floats  out   there.  You  might  see  listed  somewhere  in  your   learning  management  system,  but  you  aren’t  using   because  you  don’t  know  what  it  is.  Or  you  assume   it’s  something  just  for  the  technical  geeks.  Or   you’ve  heard  ba-­‐a-­‐a-­‐d  things  about  it.  We’re  going   to  walk  through  what  it  is,  what  it  does  and  why   you  actually  should  care  about  SCORM.  
  3. 3. Why  can  we  do  this   talk?  Because  SCORM  is   all  we  do.  Spending  all   day,  every  day  with  this   takes  us  way  beyond   being  experts.  
  4. 4. it is
  5. 5. CC  flickr  image  from  Mrs  Logic   It’s  a  set  of   standards  created   with  the  idea  of   “making  things   work”  in  mind.  Each   addresses  a   different  aspect  of   how  e-­‐learning   content  should  act.  
  6. 6. CC  flickr  image  from  The  US  Army   The  military  wanted   to  make  sure   content  it   purchased  would   work  in  its  system.   Creating  standards   makes  that   possible.  
  7. 7. CC  flickr  image  from  Humor  Blog   What  is  a   standard?  –  It’s   what  makes   DVDs  work,  MP3s   work,  Flash  work   every  time  you   load,  import  or   launch.  When  the   content  creators   follow  the   standard,  you  can   use  your  content   with  confidence.  
  8. 8. CC  flickr  image  from  Marcel030NL   SCORM  was  created  to  bring  consistency  across   elearning  content  so  when  it  says  SCORM,  you   know  it  should  work.  
  9. 9. CC  flickr  image  from  Arwen  Abendstern   This  isn’t  always  the  case,   unfortunately.  Standards   get  interpreted  differently   by  different  people.  This  is   a  large  part  of  why  people   have  so  much  trouble  with   SCORM  and  we’ve  always   had  work.  
  10. 10. CC  flickr  image  from  Jeff  Pang   In  an  ideal  world,  SCORM  would  operate  in   the  background  and  you’d  never  think  about   it  –  much  like  the  standards  for  DVD  and  MP3   players.  Until  that  happens,  it’s  good  to  have   a  good  understanding  of  SCORM  as  a   standard  so  you  can  use  it  with  as  little  pain   as  possible.  
  11. 11. it does
  12. 12. First  step  to  getting  a   CC  flickr  image  from  kevindooley   grasp  of  SCORM  is   understanding  what  it   does.  (And  by  inverse  –   what  it  doesn’t  do.)  The   doesn’t  do  part  is   probably  shorter  and   easier  –  it  has  nothing  to   do  with  your  content.   SCORM  doesn’t  care   what  the  content  is  –   doesn’t  care  what  order   you  put  information,   doesn’t  care  whether   you’re  using  video,   doesn’t  care  whether   your  quiz  is  10  questions   or  110.  SCORM  has   nothing  to  do  with  the   content  itself,  only  with   how  the  LMS  finds  and   delivers  it.  
  13. 13. CC  flickr  image  from    {Guerrilla  Futures  |  Jason  Tester}   From  your  standpoint,  there   are  two  main  functions  of   SCORM  you  need  to  know   about.  First,  the  SCORM   standard  answers  the   interoperability  question.  Not   between  systems  –  we  know   that  is  a  big  deal  in  bringing  in   new  systems  –  but  between   content  and  the  system.  So   the  goal  with  SCORM  is  for   you  to  be  able  to  buy  or   create  SCORM  content  and   know  that  it  will  work  in  a   SCORM  player.  Just  like  DVD   works  in  your  DVD  player.   (Note  that  there  are  versions   of  SCORM;  compare  that  to   DVD  regions.)  
  14. 14. CC  flickr  image  from  ann-­‐dabney   The  second  thing  SCORM  does  you   need  to  know  about  is  the  tracking   and  data  collection  portion.  Part  of   what  SCORM  does  in  the  delivery   portion  is  track  various  things   happening  in  your  course  –  how  long   they  spend  on  a  certain  page,  what   they  answer  on  question  four,  where   they  went  after  reading  section  three.   All  very  cool  things  to  know.  Set  up   your  SCORM  correctly  and  it  can   collect  the  data  and  also  tell  your  LMS   to  keep  it.  (Sometimes  that  doesn’t   happen.)  
  15. 15. Here’s  a  look  at  the  data  SCORM  can  collect.  Not   very  pretty,  not  very  easy  to  read  and  use.   Depending  on  your  LMS,  you  might  get  a  nice   report  that  makes  the  data  readable.  There  are   several  add-­‐on  products  out  there  just  for  that   purpose.  
  16. 16. And  yes,  we  have  one  for  our   SCORM  player  clients.  Here’s  what  it   looks  like  to  give  you  a  prettier  easier   to  digest  look  at  SCORM  data.  
  17. 17. CC  flickr  image  from  Guillermo   And  lastly,  SCORM  brings   reusability.  SCORM  works  with  idea   of  SCOs,  the  smallest  discrete  of   information  in  a  course,  which  can   be  combined  with  other  SCOs  in   different  ways  to  make  new   courses.    
  18. 18. we care
  19. 19. CC  flickr  image  from  Török  Gábor  (nyuhuhuu)   So  –  SCORM  is   this  big  fancy   technical  spec   that  does  a   bunch  of  uber   geeky  stuff.   What   difference  does   that  make  to   you?  
  20. 20. CC  flickr  image  from  CCAC  North  Library   Well  –  it  might  not.  Not   everything  needs  to  be   SCORM  conformant.   You  might  create   content  right  in  your   LMS  and  deliver  from   there.  You  might  not   care  about  the  extra   data  collection.  You   might  be  creating   something  for  one-­‐time   use.  There  are  a  lot  of   times  when  SCORM   might  not  be  relevant   for  you.  
  21. 21. And  the  eventual  goal  is  that  SCORM  becomes  so  background  you  don’t  even  notice  it.  
  22. 22. CC  flickr  image  from  CCAC  North  Library   But,  there  are  times   when  you  want  to  use   SCORM  and  need  a   decent  grasp  of  it.   Specifically  if  you  need   to  track  learner   performance,  buy   content  from  outside   sources,  create  a  library   of  learning  objects.  
  23. 23. CC  flickr  image  from  Torley   And  in  all  these  cases  –   whether  you  create   SCORM  or  buy   SCORM  –  a  basic   understanding  will   help  you  move   forward  with   confidence  in  your   choices.   Whether  you  are   creating  content  and   need  to  decide  on   functionality,   reusability  and  other   issues.  
  24. 24. CC  flickr  image  from  Tony  the  Misfit   Dealing   with  a   vendor,   whether   to  buy   content   or  even   a  new   LMS.  
  25. 25. CC  flickr  image  from  Playingwithbrushes   Or  just  getting   smarter  about   what  your   learners  are   doing,  how   they  use   content  and   what  you  can   be  doing  to   help  them   learn  better.  
  26. 26. CC  flickr  image  from  sigmaman   In  all  cases  though,  to  know  enough  to  say  no  at  those  times  when   you  don’t  need  it  and  definitely  to  say  no  to  bad  SCORM  …  
  27. 27. CC  flickr  image  from  erix!   And  embrace  the  benefits  SCORM   can  bring  when  used  well.  
  28. 28. CC  flickr  image  from  Horia  Varlan   @mike_rustici
  29. 29. in plain English for the rest of us