SCORM – Sharable Content Object Reference Model

SCORM is a set of technical specifications that enables online course creators to develop courses and share them across numerous platforms. The tool also enables you to track the progress of your employees; as a result, you can use that data to deliver a better learning experience to your workforce.

What is SCORM Compliance?

SCORM stands for ' sharable content object reference model’. Simply put, it is a compliance standard. Software is designed with SCORM compliance in mind to improve its accessibility and ability.

learning management system

illustration by Ann-Sophie De Steur

Previously, when various platforms created and put together their online content, that content was compatible only with their own LMS (Learning Management System). As a result, the online course created on the LMS got stuck there, regardless of whether or not LMS is working well. Let’s break SCORM into two parts for your better understanding:

Sharable Content Object – eLearning content created within SCORM standards can be shared across various platforms. For example – you have one standard plug for all your electrical devices. Online content created using this authoring software comes out as a Zip folder, which has all the information required for SCORM Compliant LMS to distribute and host the course.

Reference Model – This means that there are standards and rules to be applied to the course content which are mandatory to follow. This helps in maintaining consistency across the industry.

One of the major advantages of using SCORM is the capability to track user data. By using this tool, you can track the following:

  • Test & Quiz Results, Badges & Points earned (Gamification feature)
  • The final score of the eLearning course
  • Answers given to the specific questions
  • Pages viewed and time spent on those pages
  • Total time spent on the course
  • Total score per module
  • Learners progress
  • Check overall status, like course completed, pass or not pass

Advantages of SCORM Compliant LMS

  • With the help of plug-and-play functionality, you can reuse the already created content and save on the efforts of recreating the content. This helps in saving a lot of time and money. The training managers can reuse the content that is working well for the workforce.
  • SCORM Compliant content gets accepted by the majority of platforms, whereas, there is a higher possibility of non-SCORM Compliant content getting rejected.
  • With an interoperability feature, content created with SCORM Compliance on one LMS can be used in another LMS. With the use of different authoring tools, editing online content becomes easier with SCORM.
  • The content creators can be sure that a SCORM Compliant LMS will deliver error-free eLearning content. The use of this tool will help in bringing down the cost of integrating new courses.
  • The adaptability feature lets the organisations manage the online learning and training content depending on the job profiles the learners belong to.
  • The use of this tool makes the eLearning content interactive and engaging by using different authoring tools. This also helps in increasing efficiency and productivity by lessening the time and cost involved in delivering instructions.
  • ·With the help of this tool, you can migrate the course content without any issues, if you wish to move to a new LMS service provider.

Disadvantages of SCORM Compliant LMS

  • SCORM was developed with Flash and works a little less well when replaced with HTML5.
  • Some of the authoring tools are expensive and need a lot of training, thus, the content creators would need the training to create the content, which is an additional expense.
  • SCORM might not be beneficial if you need to publish easy reference material and if you are using a single internal system that might never change.

These challenges can all be overcome within the organisations, looking at the advantages of SCORM Compliant LMS. If your content developers are taking time to create the most engaging courses, then it is recommended to invest in SCORM. A company providing professional training should invest in the development of professional-looking SCORM-based content. When researching which LMS to use, checking SCORM Compliance is of utmost importance.


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