Your xAPI Questions Answered

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This week we entered the fantastic world of xAPI. We had guest webinars from Mike Hruska of Problem Solutions and Rob Chadwick, Co-Founder of Veracity Technology Consultants. In addition, our very own eLearning Brothers developer Bill Milstid gave 3 awesome webinars on using xAPI in each of the big 3 authoring tools—Adobe Captivate, Articulate Storyline, and Lectora by Trivantis.

These xAPI in Action webinars generated many specific, practical questions from our attendees. As we were unable to answer them all in our limited webinar timeframe, Bill kindly answered some more here.

…Let’s say a learner opens a PDF to perform a task. Do you recommend adding the PDF in Storyline and then generating a statement to send to the LRS?

Yes. I’d most likely approach it like so: User clicks a button to launch a PDF. At the same time, that button sends a custom statement indicating the user opened the doc.

Can we use anything other than an LRS to contain the xAPI content?

No. There are other options out there for capturing additional data from your courses, but xAPI and an LRS are like two peas in a pod: you have to have the LRS for xAPI.

For getting started, do you recommend using the default verbs in Storyline first? And then, use the Javascript options in Trigger (click) to expand the statements sent to the LRS? Thank you.

That certainly works. If you’re only in need of slide-level data (i.e., experienced slide #1), then you’re good to go with standard xAPI reporting from SL. If you need to expand on their verbs or take your reporting object-level, you’ll need to include some custom xAPI statements via the execute Javascript trigger. Luckily, our Course Starters have everything set up for you.

Are these default verbs from Storyline linked back to the ADL or Rustici verb libraries?

Yes. Default statements tie to the ADL library.

Do these verbs appear when you select interaction data? Will there be an entry for each slide experienced?

There is an entry for each slide experience, yes. Statements appear in these instances:

When you do layers and hide a next button until successfully completing all layers, would that next button be the one that triggers the xAPI statement?

The experienced statement will occur when a slide loads—not specifically on the button click.

Where did the data screen that Bill showed come from? Is that a product of the LRS?

The analytics screens I showed came from Veracity LRS – we’re using a free version that you can sign up for at the bottom of our xAPI templates page if you like.

Regarding the actor field, what do I do if I need to distribute and track the data for thousands of users?

You need some form of authentication and distribution—I would contact your LMS to see what level of xAPI support they provide. Some include an LRS.

Check out upcoming eLBX Online webinars and see the archives.