xAPI: How can I collect and store learner information to use for learning analytics on OpenLearning?
xAPI lets you gather specific information about how learners interact with your courses, and stores it in your own LRS (Learning Record Store).
It specifies how learning content, activities, and systems share data and track user interactions, behaviours, state, and context which can be stored in an independent database (which xAPI calls the Learning Record Store or LRS). xAPI is the successor to the now obsolete SCORM standard, providing a new approach to address the needs of greater flexibility, security, and interoperability in modern platforms.
xAPI also acts as a Webhook, allowing user actions on OpenLearning to trigger actions in other systems (such as CRMs and Analytics tools).
Configuring your OpenLearning course with an LRS (or another system which receives xAPI statements) means that interactions made by learners in your courses can be sent to your other systems, to trigger integrations or for storage alongside other learning data. The OpenLearning platform automatically tracks and sends the following events as xAPI statements:
Visiting a page
Commenting/replying on a page
Commenting/replying on a post
Sharing a post from a widget
Completing a widget, page, or course
In addition to these statements, you can also include your own HTML5 content (upload your own xAPI package) within a course. This content can be configured to track its own interactions and send additional statements to your LRS and OpenLearning (e.g. to track completion).
OpenLearning's "HTML5/xAPI" widget can be used to include xAPI-enabled content inside an OpenLearning course. In OpenLearning's authoring tools, it has the following icon:
OpenLearning will send (to your LRS) both the xAPI statements generated for all interactions within an OpenLearning course, as well as any interactions within these included xAPI-supporting tools. (e.g. xAPI-enabled packages built and uploaded by the course creator using the OpenLearning xAPI widget).
A diagram of how xAPI integrations are structured in a typical education technology ecosystem.
OpenLearning cannot create an LRS for you as of yet. If you would like to create one, you can do so using one using one of the following products:
- WatershedLRS (SaaS product, with a free tier)
- Learning Locker (Open source installation, or cloud-hosted a SaaS product)
- Yet Analytics (Saas product)
- or your own xAPI LRS provider
Once you have an LRS set up, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and provide us with:
- The URL of your course(s)
- The URL your LRS uses as its xAPI endpoint
- The Username (Key) and Password (Secret) to access your LRS
Once we have this information, we will set up these courses to start tracking statements to your LRS.