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What Is a Learning Record Store?

What is a Learning Record Store

In the early days of computing, storing learning data (or any other data) was not that organized and systematic. There was no centralized location for that data and it was scattered across different systems in different locations. 

Fortunately, this is no longer the case now.

The arrival of advanced computer technologies and cloud technology changed this situation. 

With online training and learning a norm these days, the need for capturing and storing learners’ experiences or other learning-related activities is paramount. It leads to a better understanding of learners and supports further decision-making.

This is where a learning record store (LRS) comes into the picture with a wealth of features as the new architecture of learning. It opens up a reliable way to give learners an engaging experience by tapping into advanced technologies.

This blog post serves as the ultimate guide to LRS for you, which can take learning & development to the next level.

Continue reading to find out.

What is a Learning Record Store?

What is a Learning Record Store?

If you are new to it, you must be wondering: what is an LRS?

A learning record store is a storehouse or repository of learning data. It is a record of information collected from a learning management system (LMS) or another LRS where learning activities are recorded. An LRS uses a ‘noun, verb, object’ approach to capture learning events, such as ‘Peter completed an onboarding course.’

According to Experience API or xAPI specification, LRS is a server that is responsible for receiving, storing, and providing access to learning records. It is an extension of LMS without having to replace it necessarily.

LRS drives home the point that every learning ecosystem needs a centralized system to record and analyze learners’ experiences to deliver quality learning and development (L&D).

LRS forms an integral part of xAPI. LRS tracks learning activities both on and off an LMS. Information such as whether a learner completes a course and how they interact with the system can all be recorded as statements. 

This is significant since personalization is becoming essential in any online learning environment.

Benefits of an LRS

Numerous organizations rely on LRS to improve their training programs. It has become the mainstay of effective training, better employee performance, and business growth based on learning data. LRS brings the following benefits to the table:

✓ Better Data Collection – An LRS can help you capture different kinds of data comprising both formal and informal learning experiences from inside as well as outside a learning environment.

✓ Flexibility – It is intuitive and flexible enough to function as a standalone system or within an LMS platform.

✓ Wide Applications – You can use learning record store software across different industries, including education and businesses, via various platforms that speak the same language.

✓ Real-Time Assistance – Learners, instructors, admins, and teachers can access learning data in real-time, regardless of time and place.

✓ Improved Learning – Learning based on data interoperability adds more value through a deeper understanding of learners’ experiences and needs. You can access, view, and act on the aggregate data collected from different systems.

How Does an LRS Work?

How Does an LRS Work?

A common question in the minds of people who are new to an LRS is how it works and how it fits into the data ecosystem.

An LRS lies at the center of a learning ecosystem and gathers data from all the learning systems, apps, and content.

This is how it actually works in an employee training system:

  • As soon as an xAPI-enabled software experiences learning activities, it sends activity streams to an LRS where it is stored as xAPI statements.
  • Using an xAPI-compliant LMS, another LRS, or a reporting tool, you can easily access the data stored in the LRS.
  • You can store data in an xAPI learning record store either as discrete learning records or bulks of transcripts.
  • You can configure the LRS to provide users access to data stored there.

How is an LRS Different From an LMS?

How is an LRS Different From an LMS?

At first glance, LMS and LRS may look somewhat similar, but there are a few apparent differences between the two. They are two different products with different purposes.

To reiterate, a learning record store is primarily used to store learning records, issue reporting against the records, and import or export raw data related to learning.

On the other hand, LMS software is a platform for creating, managing, and tracking training or eLearning courses online.

With a range of features and functionalities, an LMS can help create learning paths, measure knowledge retention, track compliance, issue certificates, and do a host of other things.

That said, LRSs usually form a part of LMSs and they work alongside an LMS’ capabilities, though LRSs are also available as independent or standalone solutions for enterprises and educational institutions.

How to Know If You Need an LRS

Before upgrading the learning technologies in your organization, it’s important to know what your organization is seeking to achieve. This is fundamental to the process. You need to clearly understand your organizational requirements when considering an LRS.

That way, you’ll be able to go for the right software that serves your needs best. Start off by asking the following questions:

  • Do you need actionable insights into your learners?
  • Do you want analytics on the effectiveness of your training programs?
  • Are you in need of a data dashboard for regular learning reports?

Answering these questions honestly is key to identifying whether you actually need an LRS.

If you answer YES to these questions, you should adopt an LRS right away. It can provide solutions to all the above requirements.

Improve Your eLearning Experience With an LRS

What started as a part of a research project by the U.S. Department of Defense, has become the focal point of online learning today. A learning record store is making online employee training and eLearning an enriching experience by providing useful data points.

Use it in conjunction with an LMS or separately. Either way, an xAPI LRS empowers users to store learning experiences, communicate with other compatible systems, and get analytics to measure the impact of learning programs.

Streamline and standardize how you capture, store, and share learning data using an LRS. There are many cost-effective cloud-based LMSs these days that come integrated with an LRS. Online training software ProProfs LMS is a leading example.

Embrace LRS to improve the way you manage learning and make business decisions. You’ll be glad to learn that it does make a big difference.

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About the author

Kamy is an eLearning & training expert. He has been published in eLearningIndustry, TrainingMag. As a corporate trainer at ProProfs, he has been instrumental in building an awesome eLearning management system that has simplified learning and training for thousands of customers across the globe. Follow Kamy @kamyanderson