Learning Record Store (LRS): What it is and What can it do?

Designing Digitally

01/10/2019

In simple terms, a Learning Record Store (LRS) is a database that collects information about how a learner interacted within any given activity. It stores xAPI statements. An LRS can be a key component in your learning ecosystem. It can collect data from all of your learning applications and systems. An LRS can also connect with operational systems to collect data regarding job performance.

You have to set up activities that produce xAPI statements in order to send the data to your LRS. For example, you can create an eLearning module that produces statements showing which answer learners chose for a knowledge check activity. The LRS will show you the answers learners chose. It is relatively easy to setup statements, but a module will not magically send data to an LRS unless someone programs it to do so.

What factors should I consider before getting an LRS?

The 70:20:10 model emphasizes that 70% of learning in an organization depends on informal methods. That means the LMS cannot track this kind of learning. An LRS can capture this data and provide a holistic picture to the learning department. If you are keen on measuring the impact of informal learning in your organization, you will need an LRS. The moment you have even one source that produces xAPI statements, you need an LRS to store it.

Now that you understand that LRS is a critical part of your learning analytics, here are some points you should keep in mind before setting it up.

  • LRS vendors have a varied range of deployment options. Your IT team will need to specify where and how your data should be stored. You could deploy it on your cloud network, Amazon Web Services, or similar services. The vendor should offer services based on your deployment and security policies.
  • The LRS stores all your learning data, so it needs to be secure. The vendor needs to keep in mind data immutability, open authentication, SSL data transmission.
  • Scalability is an important factor to keep in mind while considering the choice of an LRS vendor. With time, you will gain more records on each learner and the number of employees in your organization may increase. You will need to store more and more data and retain it for the long term.
  • You are collecting the LRS data to learn from it and utilize it to improve the outcomes. Therefore, it is critical to implement a solution that provides analysis and visualization tools along with data export options.

Before you finalize an LRS vendor, make sure you have determined how it will help you meet your learning goals. Do not jump on the bandwagon just because it is trending. Also, consider your infrastructure and budget. Discuss all relevant parameters with the shortlisted vendors and choose the one that best suits your purpose.

A market is already developing for this technology. Here is a list of top vendors providing LRS solutions.

Our team of developers at Designing Digitally creates custom eLearning, mLearning, Training Simulations, and Serious Games. Live chat with our team or book a free consultation to discuss how to maximize your investment in an LRS!

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