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IMS renews pledge to Secretary Duncan and adds APIP!
Some of you already know that I personally have been spending much of my time the last few weeks writing up an IMS response to an RFI (Request for Information) on Assessment Standards issued by the U.S. Department of Education on December 20, 2010. At least some of the motivation for the RFI, if not its primary motivation, seems to be the Race to the Top Assessment projects and helping to establish standards for them.
The IMS Board of Directors decided to use the occasion of the response to update a "pledge of interoperability" letter to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan that we first sent back in November of 2009. We have posted this letter online here and it now includes APIP as one of the standards that IMS will guarantee interoperability on. We've also added Learning Information Services (LIS) - which provides student system interoperability - to the pledge.
For those considering the adoption of APIP, and we are already seeing a viral response, this is a VERY significant development. As I write this IMS is working to put in place a conformance and development Alliance for QTI v2 and APIP. This type of Alliance facilitates the growth of a technical support community around QTI and APIP that the IMS members will stand behind permanently - just as we have established for Common Cartridge/LTI and LIS.
We've also put our full RFI response to DoEd here . There were lots of really basic questions about processes, as well as some technical questions about assessment standards. Obviously APIP and QTI were the cornerstones of our responses on the standards. But, we are also proposing that gradebook reporting standards can be expanded somewhat to provide a type of "diagnostic student record" that roles up all types of assessment activities (formative, interim, summative, etc.).
In terms of process, the answers were a great opportunity to dispel various myths about standards organizations and how they work - including a lot of misinformation about IMS that is out there because, well, there is a lot of competition among various people, groups, and organizations that are all claiming they know how to develop standards. So, any chance we have to set the record straight we are more than happy to do so.
Please don't forget to provide us your feedback on APIP in these open public forums or drop us a note at APIP<at>imsglobal.org.
It's going to be an interesting 2011!
See everyone in Utrecht in February - great agenda for that - and Brussels later in the week at ASPECT workshop on future of publishing! And then Learning Impact in May!
- Rob Abel