IMS, "a global consortium of more than 300 educational institutions, commercial entities and government agencies" recently announced the publication of the IMS Content Packaging 1.1 Specification that forms part of the core IMS standard for exchanging e-learning content. "The IMS Content Packaging Specification provides the functionality to describe and package learning materials, such as an individual course or a collection of courses, into interoperable, distributable packages. Content Packaging addresses the description, structure, and location of online learning materials and the definition of some particular content types. The Content Packaging Specification is aimed primarily at content producers, learning management system vendors, computing platform vendors, and learning service providers. Learning materials described and packaged using the IMS Content Packaging XML format should be interoperable with any tool that supports the Specification. Content creators can develop and distribute material knowing that it can be delivered on any compliant system, thereby protecting their investment in rich content development. IMS uses XML as its current binding, and XML-Schema as its primary XML control document language. Some IMS bindings use parts of other IMS XML bindings; for example, the Content Packaging specification also uses the IMS Meta-Data." The Managed Learning System Research and Development Lab has announced support for IMS, along with other XML-based educational standards designed for interoperability.
"IMS Global Learning Consortium, Inc. (IMS) is developing and promoting open specifications for facilitating online distributed learning activities such as locating and using educational content, tracking learner progress, reporting learner performance, and exchanging student records between administrative systems. IMS has two key goals: (1) Defining the technical specifications for interoperability of applications and services in distributed learning, and (2) supporting the incorporation of the IMS specifications into products and services worldwide. IMS endeavors to promote the widespread adoption of specifications that will allow distributed learning environments and content from multiple authors to work together (in technical parlance, 'interoperate'). Specifications materials include: IMS Content Packaging Specification, IMS Learning Resource Meta-data Specification, IMS Question and Test Specification, IMS Enterprise Specification, IMS Meta-data Specification, IMS Reusable Competencies Definition Information Model Specification, IMS Learner Information Package Specification, etc.
- IMS Global Learning Consortium, Inc.
- Announcement: "Adoption of IMS Specifications Powers Global Reach of E-learning. IMS 'Content Packaging' specification provides an industry standard platform to expand function, capability of e-learning products."
- Announcement: "Education and Tech Leaders Join Forces to SetEducation IT Standards. JES & Co., Intel, Dell, Microsoft, OneNet, SAP Public Services, Inc., EdVISION And Riverdeep Announce Managed Learning System Research and Development Program."
- IMS Content Packaging specification. [cache .ZIP]
- IMS Content Packaging Information Model
- IMS Content Packaging XML Binding Specification: ims_cp_rootv1p1.dtd; ims_md_rootv1p1.dtd; IMS_CONTENTv1p1.xdr; ims_cp_rootv1p1.xsd; ims_md_rootv1p1.xsd; ims_qti_rootv1p1.xsd; ims_xml.xsd. [cache w/ examples]
- IMS Content Packaging Best Practices and Implementation Guide
- IMS XML Bindings - All specifications
- IMS specifications - Index [available for download]
- Educom Instructional Management Systems Project (IMS) Metadata Specification - Main reference page.
- Schools Interoperability Framework (SIF) - Main reference page.
- Shareable Courseware Object Reference Model Initiative (SCORM) - Main reference page.