IMS Global, a consortium of educational institutions focused on standardization of learning data, is debuting Caliper’s guides for best practices, implementation, and conformance.
The Caliper standard offers a complementary specification for “collecting rich contextual data about learning interactions.” To accomplish this, it establishes a set of rules to define the interaction and the methods to capture it and store it on a repository.
While the focus of Caliper is learning, it is envisioned to communicate with any software that supports learning activities, from word processors or spreadsheet apps to games. All it needs to work is a compatible API that allows information to flow between applications.
The set of tools Caliper provides includes:
- Metric Profile: A format to group data from learning activities about one student from across environments.
- Sensor API: A method to identify learning events, get data from them, and send them to storage.
- Event Store: The storage itself. It offers functions similar to those of an LRS for the xAPI standard.
- A set of Conformance Tools that will help developers comply with guidelines more easily.
The tools to develop quantitative profiles for students, which can then be analyzed as a whole, are out there. The challenge now is to spark a culture of analytics across a larger number of schools and the education professions as a whole.