- The goal of standardization is to improve efficiency of actions and interactions.
There are various degrees of technical standards:
- "Real standards" of very high formal quality adopted by bodies such as ISO, IEE, IEC, ITU, etc.
- Standards like the W3C "Recommendations" or the IETF "Requests for Comments" (RFCs) or the OASIS document or IMS pedagogical standards.
- De facto standards (usually no formalization at all) like Microsoft products.
- Standards can be open or propriety. Open means publicly available, not necessarily free.
2 Standards in educational technology
This is a short, somewhat chaotic overview for now. See also:
- educational modeling language that deals in more depth with the question of modeling learning materials and activities
- Learning object standard that attemps to provide a big overview table of the most important standards.
2.1 Pedagogical standards
There are no real general standards, but the closet things are
- Rather formal Instructional design methods like MISA who do make a few minimal assuptions about good pedagogy
- Data standards like IMS Learning Design or IMS Simple Sequencing do rely or support some classes of instructional design models. Even IMS Content Packaging default organisation section can be considered a pedagogical standard if one considers that "shovelware" or "page turners" are a standard pedagogical design ;)
- In some countries there are quite precise curricula standards, e.g.
- American Association for the Advancement of Science’s (AAAS, 1993) Benchmarks for Science Literacy
- National Research Council’s (NRC, 1996) National Science Education Standards,
2.2 Pedagogical data standards
- For an overview table, see the Learning object standard article.
- Assembly and data description
- IMS Content Packaging, a standard for assembly of resources, metadata and sequencing information into a learning object
- IEEE Learning Object Metadata Standard (LOM), a standard to describe artifacts
- Modeling languages (see educational modeling language)
- IMS Learning Design and IMS Simple Sequencing, to describe pedagogical scenarios
- IMS Question and Test Interoperability (QTI), a test and testing data standard
- There are many more "local" initiatives, a lot "just" research.
- Combined profiles
- The SCORM 1.2 profile extends IMS Content Packaging with more sophisticated sequencing and Contents-to-LMS communication
- The SCORM 2004 profile includes IMS Simple Sequencing
- More stuff
- There are more IMS Global Learning Consortium standards, e.g. some related to student data.
2.3 Systems standards
- The SCORM specifications define some java-script bindings to insure interroperability of simple interactive contents (that is BTW one of the areas where a lot of systems are not Scorm compatible, even if they claim so ...)
- IMS General Web Services to allow for interoperability of various systems. This is a fairly new standard (Jan 2006) and is an interesting initiative.
3 Some technical standards of interest
There are various standardization bodies and procedures:
- For the moment, see the Wikipedia:Internet standard entry for details
4 Standardization bodies
This is a list of bodies that create "real" or "de facto" standards
4.1 In education
- IEEE Learning Technology Standards Committee
- IMS Global Learning Consortium
- IMS Global Learning Consortium
- ADL - Advanced Distributed Learning (SCORM)
- AICC - Aviation Industry CBT Committee
- ARIADNE - Alliance of Remote Instructional Authoring and Distribution Networks for Europe
4.2 Specialized ICT
- W3C - World Wide Web Consortium (Web standards)
- RFC - Requests for comments (Informal Internet standards, sometimes standardized by an "official body" sometimes not. The most important source for Internet standards.)
(including ICT standards)
- ISO - International Organization of Standardization (many very formal ICT standards).
- CEN - European Committe for Standardization ,featuring a not standards-compliant webpage ;)
- NIST US National Institute of Standards and Technology
- Standards in Use in Education, from the Widged wiki.
- Webstandards.org, a grassroots organization promoting use of standards
- CETIS - the centre for educational technology interoperability standards A British consortium that is the best overall resource on standards related to our field.
- Resource-Base - Standards, Architectures and Open Source in Education. Large index (backended with delious so get nice tag clouds).
- Library Learning Objects from the UK e-Learning Centre (Learning Light Ltd.)
(see also the entries for various standards !)
- AICC/CMI CMI001 Guidelines for Interoperability Version 3.4. October 23, 2000. Includes: AICC Course Structure Format, AICC CMI Data Model, Available at: http://www.aicc.org/.
- IMS Content Packaging Specification Version 1.1.2, Available at: http://www.imsglobal.org/
- IMS Learning Resource Meta-data Specification Version 1.2. Includes: IMS Learning Resource Meta-data Information Model, IMS Learning Resource Meta-data XML Binding Specification, and IMS Learning Resource Meta-data Best Practice and Implementation Guide. Available at: http://www.imsglobal.org
- IEEE Information Technology - Learning Technology - Learning Objects Metadata LOM: Available at: http://ltsc.ieee.org/.
- Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL), Sharable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM)® 2004 3rd Edition, Available at: http://www.adlnet.gov/