Design and Implementation Strategies for IMS Learning Design

Hubert Vogten

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisThesis 1: fully internal

    139 Downloads (Pure)


    The IMS Learning Design (LD) specification, which has been released in February 2003, is a generic and flexible language for describing the learning practice and underlying learning designs using a formal notation which is computer-interpretable. It is based on a pedagogical meta-model (Koper & Manderveld, 2004) and supports the use of a wide range of pedagogies. It supports adaptation of individual learning routes and orchestrates interactions between users in various learning and support roles. A formalized learning design can be applied repeatedly in similar situations with different persons and contexts. Yet because IMS Learning Design is a fairly complex and elaborate specification, it can be difficult to grasp; furthermore, designing and implementing a runtime environment for the specification is far from straightforward. That IMS Learning Design makes use of other specifications and e-learning services adds further to this complexity for both its users and the software developers. For this new specification to succeed, therefore, a reference runtime implementation was needed. To this end, this thesis addresses two research and development issues. First, it investigates research into and development of a reusable reference runtime environment for IMS Learning Design. The resulting runtime, called CopperCore, provides a reference both for users of the specification and for software developers. The latter can reuse the design principles presented in this thesis for their own implementations, or reuse the CopperCore product through the interfaces provided. Second, this thesis addresses the integration of other specifications and e-learning services during runtime. It presents an architecture and implementation (CopperCore Service Integration) which provides an extensible lightweight solution to the problem. Both developments have been tested through real-world use in projects carried out by the IMS Learning Design community. The results have generally been positive, and have led us to conclude that we successfully addressed both the research and development issues. However, the results also indicate that the LD tooling lacks maturity, particularly in the authoring area. Through close integration of CopperCore with a product called the Personal Competence Manager, we demonstrate that a complementary approach to authoring in IMS Learning Design solves some of these issues.
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Open Universiteit: faculties and services
    • Koper, Rob, Supervisor
    • van Bruggen, Jan, Co-supervisor
    Award date7 Nov 2008
    Place of PublicationMaastricht
    Print ISBNs978-90-79447-06-0
    Publication statusPublished - 7 Nov 2008


    • thesis
    • IMS Learning Design
    • CopperCore
    • Personal Competence Manager
    • service integration
    • technology enhanced learning
    • engine


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