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Unlocking the Power of xAPI

Understanding Impact OLX For xAPI Beginners: Making Sense Of Week 1

Join the OLX here:

Monday 11th June marked the launch of Learning Pool (formerly HT2 Labs) ‘Understanding Impact: The Final xAPI Frontier’ OLX., With Week 1 in the bag,  we’ll be spending the next 3 weeks discussing the practical side to proving impact with xAPI; to help you apply it to your learning strategies and demonstrate how xAPI will help you create, measure and prove business impact by providing better insights into your learning and performance data.

We understand that our OLXs can get a little technical, and our latest xAPI offering is certainly no exception – making it a little tricky for xAPI beginners to truly understand what on earth is going on. I’ll be honest with you – as a newbie to the industry myself – a lot of the terminology goes over my head as well so, don’t worry, you’re certainly not the only one!

Here, in the Digital Communications corner, we’ve made it our mission to summarise each week of the OLX in more accessible terms for the less technical folk, who still have an interest in the benefits and insights that xAPI provides – but would prefer them in plain English!

Hopefully, by the time you’ve finished reading this, you’ll have a much clearer understanding of xAPI [the how and the why] as well as some key terms and ideas when it comes to getting xAPI data into your Learning Pool Learning Record Store – our Week 1 topic.

What is xAPI?

xAPI, also known as Experience Application Programming Interface, develops on existing API functions by recording data in a consistent format using a universally applicable vocabulary.

The xAPI vocabulary format consists of : ‘Actor > Verb > Object’

Example: John Smith > Completed > Learning Activity

For the novice learners among you, our CEO Ben Betts explains how xAPI statements represent a log of a users learning activity which, not only enables the learner to track their progress but, also allows different systems to communicate this learning data securely and efficiently.

As expressed by one of our learners:

“The more data logged, the more reliable the guidance.”

What Can We Learn From Week 1?

As mentioned above, our latest #LearnxAPI OLX was a little on the technical side. Whilst that’s useful for our technically savvy audiences, it is much less useful for those of you who can only just about switch the computer on in the morning.

To help you get started with applying xAPI principles to the ‘real’ world, below we’ve listed some key discussion points and an object, resource or comment in the OLX that demonstrates each point.

Key Learning: To recognise that xAPI can help to answer the question as to whether digital learning if effective

Resource:  Kineo & Learning Pool (formerly HT2 Labs) xAPI Q&A

Key Learning: To understand that xAPI is not simply a way of learning but, a way of evaluating the impact training has on its learners

Resources: Villeroy and Boch Case Study

Key Learning: To recognise that xAPI enables users to explore more interactive alternatives to simple ‘click’ functions on traditional LMS

Key Learning: To recognise that xAPI statements allow differing systems to connect together

Resource: Learning Locker Apps

Key Learning: To recognise that xAPI statements encourage users to travel outside of their comfort zones whilst expressing what they specifically want from their eLearning journeys

Key Learning: To understand that data gathered from xAPI statements is no different from the data collected through SCORM previously – it just offers more detailed information

Resource: The Learning Technology Manager’s Guide to xAPI

Case Study

To better understand the application of xAPI to a business strategy, the OLX discusses the case study of Villeroy & Boch and, how they have used xAPI alongside our Learning Pool Platform and Learning Pool Learning Record Store platforms to gauge the level of impact their training has on learners/employers.

V&B established a need to develop a new learning capability in order to reduce time to competency and increase sales effectiveness of their global retail workforce.

They were keen to hear about how, by building learning journeys using Learning Locker can allow them to measure the quality of interaction among users and, how long training was taking learners on average.

18 months on from initial implementation, V&B have created 194 social courses used by thousands of employees across 40 different countries.

You can find the full case study here

If you missed out on the first installment of our ‘Understanding Impact: The Final xAPI Frontier’ you can enroll for the course here. Catch up in time for the second level where we will be exploring personas.

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