If you are in the EdTech space, you are probably aware of LTI standards support and how important it is to ensure that ebooks in your learning management system (LMS) reach your audience easily in as few steps as possible, under correct authentication. However, this is not possible with SCORM (Shareable Content Object Reference Model), commonly used to deploy various apps across the LMS. With SCORM, you have to put an entire app inside a zipped folder or a downloadable package, which must follow a standard in organizing content inside it. On the other hand, Learning Tools Interoperability, or LTI, allows ebooks from different vendors to be launched from a tool from within the LMS.
What is LTI?
Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) is an open standard created by IMS Global Learning Consortium. This tool directly links ebooks, digital content, and other resources to learning platforms such as the LMS. Unlike SCORM, LTI does not require you to download the app because your web app can run on your website normally – the only thing is that your app must be able to support the LTI protocol in order for your LMS to connect to it.
LTI has greatly improved the traditional SCORM workflow in which the ebooks are first created using an authoring tool and then exported to SCORM. They further upload it to the client LMS for review. The client then reviews the content, following which the instructional designer once again goes back to the authoring tool to make the changes. The LTI standards support has dramatically improved this original SCORM workflow by repeating this process for every review and revision.
Purpose of LTI
Another fact is that SCORM is more suited for large courses and highly interactive content. But with the focus shifting to microlearning and ebooks being accessible on mobile devices, SCORM proves inefficient and time-consuming. A full-fledged LMS integrated with a cloud-based authoring tool such as the LTI will help you create ebooks and deliver them to the end-users from the same dashboard. The LTI standards support offers ease of use, and it is simple to use even for people with basic design knowledge to create effective eLearning content.
With LTI, your course instructors can include LTI links into your ebooks and courses, for instance, links to gamified activities, immersive 360° virtual field trips, and virtual science experiments. With LTI, end-learners can move between various resources without leaving the LMS and logging into multiple sites.
The LTI standards support integration allow learners to move seamlessly from one tool to the other with minimal effort. The current version of LTI is 1.3, and the previous versions are now deprecated. The LTI is a suite of services built on the LTI 1.3 standards to enable new features and deeper integration with the LMS and other such platforms while offering advanced protection to exchange sensitive data. LTI enables smooth and secure access to courses and information, thus, enabling a seamless user experience. The tool expands the capabilities of your LMS, allowing you to achieve a plug-and-play, future-ready digital learning ecosystem.
Simply put, the LTI standards define the standardized ways by which you can securely and easily integrate third-party content, such as ebooks, into courses with platforms such as the LMS on your premises or the cloud. Without LTI, you would have to rely on custom integrations, which means that you will have to undertake new development work every time a content provider or an LMS provider wants to integrate with the other. With LTI, you have to implement the support once, and then your content can easily integrate with the LMS or as many other systems by sharing the required configuration information.
The LTI standards define two concepts, platforms and tools. The platform, previously called tool consumers, is the entity from which you launch into the tool, in our case, the LMS. On the other hand, to ingrate courses or activities, you will need the LTI tool support.
Type of LTI Standards Support
The type of LTI standards support you need will depend on the LTI version you are using, that is, LTI 1.0, LTI 1.1, or LTI 1.3, and the tools or platforms you would like to integrate with. As mentioned above, versions 1.0 and 1.1 are currently considered depreciated; however, most certified LTI products implement these versions, so it makes sense to add support for these standards to maximize the number of products you can integrate with.
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What Does LTI Standards Include?
- Management interfaces: These interfaces define how to integrate the LMS to external learning tools, also known as the tool providers, and create links in the e-learning course content.
- Links to external learning tools: With these links, you can ensure a personalized experience with the tool. The learners don’t have to sign in to multiple sites to access content; rather, the OAuth framework supports single sign-on to various learning tools.
- Introduction of the IMS Security Framework: The framework prescribes improved security based on OAuth2 and JSON Web Tokens.
- Improved documentation and migration guidance: This LTI support helps you benefit from the basic launch to the full suite of LTI possibilities.
- Alignment with the LTI Advantage: The LTI Advantage comprises three essential end-user services that build on LTI 1.3. These services together implement all the features you need to support your teaching and learning activities. For instance, you can provision usernames and roles. LTI can intelligently address the learner on launch, enable the exchange of content, such as assignments from the LMS to an assessment tool, and transfer the scores to a central grade book. This set of LTI standards support services enable a fully integrated and innovative digital ecosystem.
Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) allows you to integrate your ebooks in a learning management system (LMS) in as few steps as possible, under correct authentication. LTI is an improved version of SCORM. Unlike SCORM, LTI standards support does not require you to download the app because your web app can run on your website normally – the only thing is that your app must support the LTI protocol. The LTI standards describe how you can easily and securely connect learning apps and tools with learning platforms such as the LMS, either on-premises or on the cloud, in a secure environment without the need for expensive custom programming. Using LTI standards support, you can securely integrate your ebooks and other eLearning content into the LMS in just a few clicks.