The state of IMS LD three years on Dai Griffiths Universitat Pompeu Fabre, Barcelona email@example.com www.unfold-project.net
A practical problem for a distance teaching university • Open University of the Netherlands had to shift from paper based to electronic teaching • Tried to model all their pedagogies in templates: too complex! • Developed EML (Educational Modelling Language) to model any pedagogy • Developed EduBox player to deliver courses to learners
A general problem for open elearning specifications • Open eLearning specifications started to be developed in the days of the CD ROM • Single learner, limited pedagogic possibilities • Online education providers needed a system which could model and deliver flexible pedagogies
What is IMS • IMS Global Learning Inc is a not-for-profit organisation in the US which produces open eLearning specifiations • Has industrial and academic partners around the world. • IMS had become aware that simple sequencing and content packaging were too restricted.
EML becomes IMS LD • Started a Learning Design work group, but it was a big job. • EML provided ready made solution, adopted by IMS. • EML reduced in scope because of existing specs • Split into three levels to ease implementation. • Published in January 2003
What does IMS LD do? • IMS LD is an open specification for modeling Units of Learning (UoLs) • Defines how people in roles carrying out activitieswith resources. • It is a language with an XML binding • It claims that any pedagogy can be modeled in this way • It does not model learning • It can be thought of as in interoperable and machine readable lesson plan
Four aspects of IMS-LD • 1) An educational modelling language: UoLs are formal expressions of lesson plans or smaller units of activities (DialogPlus…) • 2) A methodology (best practice guide) • 3) An infrastructure (CopperCore, RELOAD…) • 4) By definition, an interoperability specification (between applications which may pre-date the specification)
What is UNFOLD • UNFOLD is a project funded by the Technology Enhanced Learning programme. • It supports the adoption of open eLearning standards for multiple learners and flexible pedagogies
What has UNFOLD done • Provide access to public resources • Facilitate Communities of Practice by • Organising regular face to face meetings • Provide online support (discussions, learning activities, resources...) • Raise awareness of the specification • Organise workshops • Make presentations at conferences • Publish papers and supporting material
What progress has been made in the last 2 years? • Three years ago there was nothing • It took two years for the first systems to be ready • It is only this year that there is anything to show (apart from EML) • Momentum is now starting to build
Systems development • Runtime systems: • EduBox (EML player, Blackboard has an agreement to use it) • CopperCore: Open Source Learning Design Engine. http://coppercore.org/ • SLeD: A service based learning design player which makes use of CopperCore http://ldplayer.sourceforge.net/
Design time systems • Reload: http: www.reload.ac.uk • CopperAuthor: www.copperauthor.org • COLLAGE (University of Valladolid) gsic.tel.uva.es/collage • AskLD: eaccess.iti.gr/services/index.php?sec=tools • Cosmos, Chronotech, eLive...
Compliant systems • Some interest from commercial organsiations (Cordys Educator, Blackboard) • Much more interest from Open Source foundations • Moodle, .LRN, LAMS, Boddington • Design time only: • Dialog+ www.nettle.soton.ac.uk/toolkit/, • MOT+ www.licef.teluq.uquebec.ca/gp/eng/productions/mot.htm
Authoring UoLs • In February 2005 there were no published UoLs other than those illustrating the specification. • There is now a collection at LN4LD, and many people are trying out the specification. • Innovative systems supporting teachers in experimenting with pedagogy: NetUniversité, LearningMapR, Dialog+
Using the specification with learners • EML has been used with learners in OUNL for a number of years • Liverpool Hope University in Liverpool is running the first pilot using a CopperCore based system (in a mixed face to face / online environment)
Current funding developments • Substantial investment by JISC in the UK, and also from SURF6 in Netherlands. • Current European projects using IMS LD include iClass and eLegi. • New projects include TenCompetence and OpenDock. There may be more.
TenCompetence IP, four years • support … lifelong competence development by establishing the most appropriate technical and organizational infrastructure, using open-source, standards-based, sustainable and innovative technology. • Develop and integrate models and tools to create, store and exchange: 1.knowledge resources, 2.learning activities and UoLs 3.competence development programmes 4. network data for lifelong competence development.
OpenDock: Leonardo, 2 years • Create a corpus of learning materials published under the Creative Commons license, with provision for IMS Learning Design, drawn from a range of different sectors of VET from different languages and cultures. • Establish a repository of learning resources, building on current best practice and existing Open Source repository implementations and eLearning standards
Continuing the work of UNFOLD • Collaboration with ProLearn thematic network • Continue with websites and mailing list • Activities linked to TenCompetence • Possible follow on UNFOLD project
Key R&D issues: Systems • Usability and representation of UoLs • How to integrate a range of services into a Unit of Learning • Development of a service architecture for LD players • Repositories and support for social networks of users • How to exchange fragments of UoLs • The “Metadata problem”
Key R&D issues: Learning Designers • What constitutes an LD template • Development of templates • Identification of effective authoring practice • What are the limits of expressivity of IMS LD
Key R&D issues: Teachers and Learning Providers • What is a pedagogic pattern? • Can it be expressed in IMS LD? • Can IMS LD be useful in face to face and mixed environments? • What interfaces are needed by learners? • Can IMS LD be useful as a lesson planning tool? • How can teachers (and learning designers) collaborate in authoring and sharing UoLs
Questions, comments and suggestions • For more information www.unfold-project.net • And the UNFOLD forums and learning activities server at moodle.learningnetworks.org