SCORM – eLearning Communication Standard

  • Synergistx Synergistx
  • Updated:
SCORM elearning

SCORM – What is it?

SCORM, initially developed by the United States Department of Defense is an acronym. This is: Sharable Content Object Reference Model.

TLDR; SCORM is an eLearning communication standard that allows eLearning modules to “talk” with an LMS. For example saving your position in a module, commonly known as bookmarking. However, the primary use is passing scores to and from an LMS.

Today, it is the standard for eLearning development. This is due to its capabilities and industry standardization. It is a technical specification conforming with AICC, IMS, and IEEE specifications. Further, it unifies one content model framework that embodies other designs while simultaneously working alone. Technically, it is an eLearning content aggregation model and a run-time environment for various learning objects.

For those who do not recognize the technical explanation of SCORM, it is a domain profile, using content packaging and simple sequencing specifications. Conventionalized by the Department of Defense, it claims high standards of operations and systems capabilities. Many other software programs also exploit these standards, and it is becoming the basic framework for large corporation application and appellation.

How does one use it?

SCORM is the macrostructure for custom eLearning development, class design, subsistence, and application. It lets technicians customize and create eLearning programs that concentrate on job-essential functions for multiple users at varied levels. Technicians and trainers can master the software and code, without an unjust amount of time and hassle, comparable to parallel software. It is cost-efficient, interoperable, and reusable. This allows companies to generate and compose training modules from internal and external sources. Because it is reusable, it is a create once and customize as needed solution. Individualized content, based on existing content, is trivial.

As mentioned earlier, SCORM is used to communicate between content (client) and LMS (server). It works well in conjunction with programs such as Moodle, BlackBoard, TeacherContact, and ReloadEditor. Based on the specific edition that the company incorporates, capabilities differ.

Editions Available*

*note there may be additional editions when you read this post. Our online learning is available in multiple standards.

There are presently three editions of SCORM. However, the first is largely antiquated due to discrepancies and inoperable run-time errors. The third edition, while the newest at 14 years old, only enjoys limited support.

SCORM 1.1–This version employed a Course Structure Format XML file to develop content structure, but had no basis for metadata. It was cast aside in favor of  the 1.2 edition, and is primarily obsolete in its totality.

SCORM 1.2–Even though it is primarily a compilation of upgrades to the 1.1 version, it is still prevalent and widely used by many businesses requiring eLearning modules and Internet learning classes.

SCORM 2004–The 2004 edition has had three releases. The first release, January 2004, presented companies with varied version changes. The second release, July 2004, made available improved Content Aggregation Model and Run-Time Environment. The third release, October 2006, elucidated a host of interaction requirements, sequencing specifications, and interoperability necessities.

SCORM 1.2, despite being older, is the most common in use. The primary reason for this is simple – it works. For the most part, every LMS supports 1.2 – while 2004 enjoys limited support. It still offers companies the ability to reuse modules, while giving them the advantage of augmenting systems without completely revamping current data.

Do you have more questions about SCORM, its versions, and its purpose?