Dublin Core Metadata Initiative, IMS Global Learning Consortium, and International Digital Publishing Forum Announce Digital Learning Metadata Alliance
World’s Leading Educational and Publishing Standards Organizations Agree to Cooperate to Harmonize Educational and Learning Resource Metadata
Silver Spring, MD, Seattle, WA, and Lake Mary, FL - 24 October 2014 - Today the world’s leading educational and publishing standards organizations announced the launch of the Digital Learning Metadata Alliance to facilitate cooperation on metadata standards to make it easier to find and use digital resources both within educational institutions and via the world wide web. DLMA.org is an umbrella project by which standards organizations with a stake in educational and learning metadata can coordinate and harmonize standards. Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI), IMS Global Learning Consortium (IMS Global) and International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) are the founding organizations of the alliance. These three organizations represent over 600 organizations worldwide that are leaders in digital publishing, personalized education and digital learning technology. The alliance is open to other standards setting organizations that wish to harmonize educational and learning metadata standards (inquiry via email DLMA@imsglobal.org).
The goal of the collaboration is to ensure adequacy and consistency of metadata across a wide variety of consuming applications, such as library systems, learning platforms and Internet search engines. DCMI was recently asked to become the steward for the Learning Resource Metadata Initiative (LRMI). Thus, DLMA will be able to further the evolution of LRMI in coordination with other key standards.
The cooperating organizations have agreed to hold special sessions and work activities to ensure coordination of their work. The first incarnation of DLMA work will be the metadata schema for EDUPUB a joint collaboration between IDPF and IMS Global to enable e-books that are interoperable across reader platforms, web browsers and educational systems (such as learning platforms and learning tools). In concert with EDUPUB, IMS Global is providing guidance for the ingestion of metadata-tagged learning objects from publishers in U.S. K-12 school districts, including mapping to LRMI/schema.org (see guidance document here).
“A dramatic increase in adoption of digital resources by school districts and universities from both commercial publishers, open educational resources and the open web requires that metadata from a wide variety of sources be harmonized for maximum productivity of educators and students,” said Dr. Rob Abel, Chief Executive of IMS Global. “IMS member organizations, including institutions and publishers are providing guidance on the metadata needed to advance the use of these resources in the move toward personalized learning – and it is absolutely essential that this work is kept consistent with the relevant metadata initiatives now and into the future. Cooperation via DLMA will ensure that this happens.”
"DCMI is pleased to be an inaugural member of the DLMA and looks forward to a collaborative working relationship with other public and private sector organizations seeking to make sense of the growing diversity of the metadata ecosystem for education and training" said Michael Crandall, DCMI Governing Board Chair. While we recognize today that the diversity and the resulting complexities inherent in the ecosystem provide rich opportunities in terms of innovative solutions in systems and services, we also recognize that finding meaningful and interoperable paths through the ecosystem can be immensely challenging, if not downright paralyzing. The DLMA holds the promise of providing much needed 'sense-making' in an education and training community pressing further into sharing contexts and adaptive learning where metadata is not only interoperable, but also harmonized. DCMI looks forward to the collaborative work ahead of us."
Appropriate metadata maximizes the accessibility and overall value of digital content. IDPF welcomes the DLMA collaboration to promote the rapid adoption of consistent learning resources metadata in the interests of students, educators, and publishers," said Bill McCoy, Executive Director, IDPF. "IDPF member organizations have a keen interest in seeing this initiative blossom and anticipate the results being reflected in relevant standards such as EPUB".
About Dublin Core Metadata Initiative
DCMI is a global community that has played key roles in the development of best practices in metadata modeling, design and implementation since 1995. The DCMI community has developed and maintains some of the major languages of description used on the Web and in systems. DCMI's principles of operation are open consensus building, international scope and participation, neutrality of purpose and business models, neutrality of technology, and a cross disciplinary focus. DCMI is a project of ASIS&T, a U.S. nonprofit, supported through membership programs for both individuals and organizations. DCMI is dedicated to metadata innovation that is forward-looking while maintaining interoperability with the legacy languages of description and systems upon which it builds.
About IMS Global Learning Consortium (IMS Global)
IMS Global is a nonprofit organization that advances technology that can affordably scale and improve educational participation and attainment. IMS members are leading suppliers, institutions and government organizations that are enabling the future of education by collaborating on interoperability and adoption initiatives. IMS sponsors the Learning Impact Leadership Institute, a global program focused on recognizing the impact of innovative technology on educational access, affordability, and quality while developing the people and ideas that are going to help shape the future of educational technology.
About International Digital Publishing Forum
The International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) is the global trade and standards organization for the digital publishing industry. Founded in 1999, the IDPF has over 350 organization members from 47 different countries. Members include all parts of the value chain including publishers, solution and service providers, IT companies, libraries and other government agencies, and educational institutions. IDPF develops the EPUB standard, which has become the most widely adopted content format for eBooks and other digital publications.