How to choose a Learning Record Store
Learning Record Store (LRS) is an enabling technology that allows organizations to accumulate people’s learning experience from a variety of sources. Companies around the globe make use of it to collect data which can be used to study the bonding between experience and results, and so improve their outcomes further.
What is an LRS?
The xAPI spec documentation defines an LRS as “A system that stores learning information. Prior to the xAPI, most LRSs were Learning Management Systems (LMS); however, this document uses the term LRS to be clear that a full LMS is not necessary to implement the xAPI.” LRS is a cloud-based service that only conducts with learning information storage and recovery of learning data (i.e., xAPI statements). It does not include the infinite functions of an LMS, thus is not a replacement for one, nor is it the “next generation LMS”. However, LRSs can be made more practical by integrating it into LMS, and often are, in those situations where the LMS remains as the system for training records.
What are the differences between LRS and LMS?
In a comparative analysis between LRS and LMS, both are far apart from each other in their functions. Instead, it raises the current learning ecosystems by looking at all learning aspects, apart from looking only in LMS. LMS is designed in a manner of the structure of course, security of data, registration, delivery, interaction, assessment, reporting, personalization, integration, etc. which helps in proper functioning of the system. Meanwhile, LRS helps in tracking up the records and activity database measuring.
LRS is a xAPI compliant database which can be self-contained systems, yet it can be integrated into an LMS. In this way, data can be accessed by the LMS itself.
Who are the users?
The method of the LRS data store system was introduced to the e-learning industry in 2011, so it’s a very new method which is rapidly budding.
List of LRS adopters according to ADL are: http://adlnet.gov/xapi-adopters
List of LRS adopters according to Rustici Software are: https://tincanapi.com/adopters/
What are the categories of an Learning Record Store
There are 3 types of LRS known which are;
- Learning Analytics Platforms: This platform commute the learning and performance data from various sources which can be compared and analyzed to provide the user activity and their perspectives.
- OEM LRS: In this platform, the LRS is designed in a manner that its functionality will depend on the LMS on which it is integrated. Integration between LRS and LMS is performed, so it has fewer features than Learning Analytics as this platform is not a stand-alone system.
- Testing and Development LRSs: This platform provides the debugging information to the developers who are using xAPI.
Source: Experience API / xAPI
What are the different aspects a customer should take into review while choosing an LRS?
While choosing a product, customer perspective is always that they need a product which has both qualitative and quantitative features. In order to choose an LRS for your organization or LMS, the features can be sorted out as:
- Determine the basic feasibility of an Learning Record Store acquisition and the how your organizational goals can be met with it.
- Decide on a process and schedule, for how the LRS acquisition project will proceed.
- Determine the high-level requirements and LRS output for it.
- Determine your budget
- Determine the category of system you will need, i.e. Learning Record Store categories like Learning Analytics Platform, OEM LRSs or Testing and Development LRS.
- Filter the list of potential candidates’ i.e. minimum requirements and/or over the budgets.
Be sure to talk about these parameters or any other questions you might have with your LRS vendor; some of the answers might be revealed by you earlier while doing product research, yet your LRS vendor should give you advice on them all too.