The learning curve blog

Helpful advice for online course creators, businesses, and entrepreneurs

Who Needs SCORM? Businesses with an Internal LMS

by | Aug 16, 2019 | eLearning Tools

The Sharable Content Object Reference Model, or SCORM, still heavily influences the eLearning industry, even two decades after its initial release. In a time characterized by rapid technological development, such longevity is relatively unusual. But SCORM doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. 

Here’s why. Originally, SCORM was the preferable choice for content creation because it introduced an affordability in online training that wasn’t an option before. However, the reason SCORM is still so prevalent is largely owed to its interoperability or its capability to operate across different platforms, any systems that are comformant with that version of SCORM, really. This attribute means that content providers can author courses that can be used in many different contexts. Certainly, SCORM made online training content cheaper to create and deliver, but that’s no longer its primary allure. Now, interoperability is king.

However, it’s vital to remember that SCORM is best used in specific contexts. There are other times when other content models will be the better choice for course authors. For example, content creators who want to be able to utilize advanced data analytics pertaining to learner interactions with their courses should probably choose xAPI as their content model. In the world of eLearning technology, it’s all about context.

When Is It Best to Use SCORM?

There’s certainly more than one situation where SCORM proves to be the smartest choice for content creation and delivery. With such a broad spectrum of potential uses, SCORM really does have a massive range of advantages. To keep it brief, we’re just going to focus on one advantage in this blog.

One circumstance in which SCORM’s interoperability is especially appealing is with businesses who deploy online training via their own internal Learning Management System (LMS). These businesses might create their own content, but their main source of revenue is their LMS, which they use to host content from external vendors. Another possible reason that a company uses its own internal LMS to deploy online training. In either circumstance, the business doesn’t focus on content creation, which usually means that they need to purchase the content to train their employees, or host the content from vendors for ecommerce. 

Since any reputable LMS is SCORM conformant, businesses with their own LMS are more likely to purchase SCORM content, either to host the content sold by external vendors or to host content they purchased to train their own employees. Unless these businesses are searching for content with highly specified technical features—which is certainly a possibility—another content model would be a better choice. 

In most circumstances, SCORM will perform excellently. At the very least, it’ll still suffice. Remember, all content models, SCORM included, work best in context. There are optimal times to deploy content using a certain model, and there are suboptimal times. It’s all a matter of knowing what you want to accomplish, what you want your content to do, and how you want learners to interact with the content. If businesses have their own internal LMSs, then SCORM is the content model that’s statistically most likely to work with their system.

Choose the Right Learning Platform

Maybe you have SCORM content ready to deliver to learners, or maybe you want to create course content using SCORM.  Choosing a learning platform that supports the creation and management of SCORM is critical. DigitalChalk conforms to SCORM 1.2, which is the most popular and widely used version of SCORM. With our state-of-the-art learning platform you can create, deliver, and manage your SCORM content from a secure centralized location.

Still have questions about whether creating course content with SCORM is right for your training business?  Read these other two blogs to learn about other ways SCORM proves advantageous for content providers: 

Who Needs SCORM? Content Providers with Extensive Reach
Who Needs SCORM? Organizations with Multiple Departments

And as always, we’re happy to answer any questions you might have.

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