How xAPI & Caliper will change K12 education forever

A Learning Record Store, is what can make personalized learning possible in K-12 education.

This post was originally published on February 4th, 2016 and we are repurposing it here. We've revised it to fit in with our discussions about how xAPI technology can be used with a Learning Record Store. 

So that title is...bold to say the least. But, a Learning Record Store (LRS) powered by the two interoperability standards known as Experience API  (xAPI) and IMS Caliper has the ability to provide robust reporting capabilities never before seen in education. And, to take it a step further, an LRS can enable true learning analytics. Not the cheap bill of goods sold by others in the past, but actual learning analytics to enable the application of many interesting, very forward thinking learning strategies.

It may also give learners (students and teachers) a more ideal opportunity for a better outcome. 

But, let's back up just a bit...

First, just what is xAPI & Caliper?

xAPI &Caliper are new learning specifications (very similar in nature) designed to specifically gather data from different sources (i.e. LMSs, or other apps, tools and platforms) so we as educators can get an in-depth understanding of how the leaning experience is unfolding. And, intervene just in time to the learners benefit . 

What does xAPI & Caliper do?

We've been going on, for a few days, about how powerful the use of a LRS can be for education. xAPI or Caliper are the engine that gives the LRS it's power. Check out a few of it's capabilities and benefits:

  • Capture formal and informal learning experiences
    • xAPI/Caliper allows teachers to break down barriers. Learners can be assigned work outside of an LMS and the activity is still recorded.
  • Better, more robust reporting
    • It allows administrators to analyze the performance of content, tools, and apps to gauge effectiveness. Those reports can then be used to adapt each learners experience to the way they learn best (i.e. personalized learning)
  • Interoperability
    • xAPI/Caliper communicates with more than just eLearning courses. It’s flexible allowing an LMS and LRS to communicate with courses, knowledge bases, document management systems, helpdesks, games, social media, eBooks, and more!
  • Invisible
    • It works behind the scenes within the LMS to collect data on the formal and informal learning activities and then store them seamlessly in the LRS.

This is definition of game-changing.

Using the xAPI or Caliper learning specifications to capture a learners formal and informal learning experiences and funneling that data into the LRS; teachers, administrators and stakeholders can obtain a much more complete picture of that learner.

With that complete picture of the learner in front of them those same teachers, administrators and stakeholders can then craft and/or adapt a learners experience to best match their skills and learning styles within the learning management system.

The use of xAPI/Caliper technology and an LRS within an existing LMS or as a standalone product will completely transform the way we do education.

The demand has been there for quite sometime. Now we have the technology to meet and satisfy that demand for K-12 education.

Come and join us.



Matt Phillip Senior Marketing Manager at Thrivist, LLC