Learning Tools Interoperability Names and Role Provisioning Services Version 2.0

Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI)® Names and Role Provisioning Services

1EdTech Final Release
Version 2.0
1EdTech Final Release
Date Issued:16 April 2019
Status:This document is made available for adoption by the public community at large.
This version: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-nrps/v2p0/
Latest version: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-nrps/latest/
Errata: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-nrps/v2p0/errata/

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The Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI)® Names and Role Provisioning Services is an LTI™ specification for providing access to a list of users and their roles within context of a course, program or other grouping. The LTI™ specification enables instructors to automate the provision of student lists via LTI to an external tool. LTI does not pass user information in its default configuration. Using the LTI Names and Role Provisioning Services, user information can be passed in a safe and secure manner. The Names and Role Provisioning Services also allows instructors to be provided a display showing the activity of all of their students, whether or not they have accessed the tools. An earlier iteration of this spec was formerly called LTI Membership Services.

  1. Introduction

  1.1 Overview

The Names and Role Provisioning Services is based on 1EdTech Learning Information Services (LIS) [LIS-20] and W3C Organization Ontology [W3C-ORG]. It is concerned with providing access to data about users’ roles within organizations, a course being an example of an organization. So a very common purpose for this service is to provide a roster (list of enrolments) for a course.

  1.1.1 Conformance Statements

All sections marked as non-normative, all authoring guidelines, diagrams, examples, and notes in this specification are non-normative. Everything else in this specification is normative.

The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT", "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in [RFC2119].

An implementation of this specification that fails to implement a MUST/REQUIRED/SHALL requirement or fails to abide by a MUST NOT/SHALL NOT prohibition is considered nonconformant. SHOULD/SHOULD NOT/RECOMMENDED statements constitute a best practice. Ignoring a best practice does not violate conformance but a decision to disregard such guidance should be carefully considered. MAY/OPTIONAL statements indicate that implementers are entirely free to choose whether or not to implement the option.

The Conformance and Certification Guide for this specification may introduce greater normative constraints than those defined here for specific service or implementation categories.

  1.1.2 Document Set Normative Documents
LTI Advantage Conformance Certification Guide [LTI-CERT-13]
The LTI Advantage Conformance Certification Guide describes the procedures for testing Platforms and Tools against the LTI v1.3 and LTI Advantage services using the 1EdTech certification test suite. Informative Documents
LTI Advantage Implementation Guide [LTI-IMPL-13]
The LTI Advantage Implementation Guide provides information to lead you to successful implementation and certification of the LTI Core v1.3 specification and the set of LTI Advantage specifications.

  1.2 Terminology

  1.2.1 Organization

An organization is a collection of people organized into a group for a common purpose or specific reason. Organizations can be part of a hierarchical structure.

  1.2.2 Role

The type of involvement a person has within an organization. In the case of a course, the typical roles are Instructor, Teaching Assistant and Learner.

  1.2.3 Membership

A relationship between a person and an organization which involves at least one role. A person cannot be a member of an organization without being assigned a role.

  1.2.4 Tool Platform and Tool

This version of the specification uses the LTI 1.3 terminology of Tool Platform and Tool, which respectively refer to Tool Consumer and Tool Provider used in the previous LTI specifications.

  2. Context Membership

  2.1 Membership container media type

The accompanying HTML documentation defines the following media type used by the membership service:

  • 'application/vnd.ims.lti-nrps.v2.membershipcontainer+json'
"id" : "https://lms.example.com/sections/2923/memberships",
"context": {
  "id": "2923-abc",
  "label": "CPS 435",
  "title": "CPS 435 Learning Analytics",
"members" : [
    "status" : "Active",
    "name": "Jane Q. Public",
    "picture" : "https://platform.example.edu/jane.jpg",
    "given_name" : "Jane",
    "family_name" : "Doe",
    "middle_name" : "Marie",
    "email": "jane@platform.example.edu",
    "user_id" : "0ae836b9-7fc9-4060-006f-27b2066ac545",
    "lis_person_sourcedid": "59254-6782-12ab",
    "roles": [
Figure 1 Example of application/vnd.ims.lti-nrps.v2.membershipcontainer+json media type.

  2.2 Sharing of personal data

Which member data is actually passed to the Tool relies on the agreement between the Platform and the Tool. At a minimum, the member must contain:

  • user_id: as communicated in the LtiResourceLinkRequest under sub
  • roles: an array of roles with values as defined in [LTI-13]

A context parameter must be present that must contain:

  • id: id of the context

Any other member attributes will need an explicit consent from the Platform to be shared with the Tool. The Platform may delegate that consent to the actual member, therefore a Tool should never rely on additional member attributes to be present.

  2.3 Membership status

Each membership has a status of either Active or Inactive. If the status is not specified then a status of Active must be assumed.

When reporting differences a membership (see below) may have a status of Deleted which means that the membership no longer exists. A normal request for a memberships list will only return current memberships and hence none will have a status of Deleted.

  2.4 Using the service

The only action defined for this service is an HTTP GET request. This should be sent to the endpoint provided and include an 'Accept' header with a value of 'application/vnd.ims.lti-nrps.v2.membershipcontainer+json'. The request must be properly secured as per the LTI Security Framework used by the LTI integration.

  2.4.1 Role query parameter

By default all the current memberships will be returned by a request to this service. However, this may be limited to only those memberships with a specified role by passing its URI in a query parameter named 'role'. For example, a query parameter of 'role=http%3A%2%2Fpurl.imsglobal.org%2Fvocab%2Flis%2Fv2%2Fmembership%23Learner' will filter the memberships to just those which have a Learner role. Since this is a context-level role, the parameter could be simplified to 'role=Learner', following the same rule which applies to the 'roles' parameter in a 'LtiResourceLinkRequest' message.

  2.4.2 Limit query parameter

The Tool may specify a maximum number of members to be returned in the response from the Platform. The Platform may use this as a guide to the number it returns but may include more or less than the value provided. If the response from a Platform does not comprise all of the members a rel="next" header link will be included to indicate how to request the next set of members. The absence of a rel="next" header link indicates that no more members are available. See [RFC8288].

Link: <https://lms.example.com/sections/2923/memberships?p=2>; rel="next"

  2.4.3 Membership differences

A response by the Names and Role Provisioning Services may include a rel="differences" header link. When present, this URL should be complete and opaque; users of this URL should not need to decorate it further (nor should further decoration be necessarily supported). When present this will specify a differences URL which the service user may use to obtain a report of all the differences in the membership between the time the differences URL was created and the time the URL is used (the current time). If a membership has been deleted during this interim period, it may be included in the response with a status of Deleted. All other entries in the response represent memberships which have been added or changed; for the latter the entry will be the state of the membership at the current time. This option is not intended to provide a history of all the changes which have taken place, merely to report any differences between the state of a membership at the current time and the state of the entire roster at the time the differences URL was created and provided in the initial service response. For example, a platform might provide this differences URL, encoding the earliest time to begin considering roster differences to report (there is no requirement for platforms to use this pattern, however). See [RFC8288].

Link: <https://lms.example.com/sections/2923/memberships?since=1422554502>; rel="differences"

Optionaly, a platform may offer a Resource Link level membership service. The endpoint is the same as the context membership service. The tool needs to append an additional query parameter rlid with a value of the Resource Link id as communicated in LtiResourceLinkRequest https://purl.imsglobal.org/spec/lti/claim/resource_link claim.

Filtering per role, using limit and differences as defined above also apply to Resource Link membership service.

  • 'application/vnd.ims.lti-nrps.v2.membershipcontainer+json'

  3.1 Access restriction

A platform must deny access to this request if the Resource Link is not owned by the Tool making the request or the resource link is not present in the Context.

  3.2 Message section

When queried in the context of a Resource Link, an additional message section is added per member. This element must contain any context or resource link specific message parameters, including any extension or custom parameters, which would be included in the message from the specified Resource Link and which contain data specific to the member.

The parameters must be included using the LTI 1.3 claims format defined in [LTI-13].

  3.3 Membership filtered

A platform may return a subset of the context memberships, reflecting which members can actually access the Resource Link.

  3.4 Basic Outcome

The ability to query Resource Link membership has usually been used to discover the lis_result_sourcedid ahead of the learner actually launching the resource. If the Tool integration still relies on Basic Outcome, the platform should include in the message section the Basic Oucome claim https://purl.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-bo/claim/basicoutcome as defined in [LTI-BO-10].

  3.5 Substitution parameters

Any substitution parameters pertaining to member information should be resolved. For example, any custom parameter whose value uses a '$User' or '$Person' substitution variable should be included and resolved if supported by the platform.

  3.6 Binding with LTI Core

  3.6.1 LTI 1.3 integration Claim for inclusion in LTI messages

The claim to include Names and Role Provisioning Service parameter in LTI 1.3 messages is: https://purl.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-nrps/claim/namesroleservice.

It contains 2 properties: context_memberships_url (service url) and service_version. The service URL is always fully resolved, and matches the context of the launch. The service_versions specifies the versions of the service that are supported on that end point.

"https://purl.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-nrps/claim/namesroleservice": {
    "context_memberships_url": "https://www.myuniv.example.com/2344/memberships",
    "service_versions": ["2.0"]
  } Scope and Service security

All service requests should be secured by including a properly scoped access token in the Authorization header as per the 1EdTech Security Framework [SEC-10].

The scope to request to access this service is:

Scope Description Allowed HTTP Methods
https://purl.imsglobal.org/spec/lti-nrps/scope/contextmembership.readonly Tool can query context's enrollment context_memberships_url : GET

  3.6.2 LTI 1.1 integration

A platform may offer this version of the service to LTI 1.1 tools.

The service endpoint is passed using the custom parameter: custom_context_memberships_v2_url.

All service requests should be secured by signing them using the lti_oauth_body_hash_ws_security Web Services Security Profile as described in the Security document [LTI-SEC-14]. Use LTI 1.3 message type name and claims

When accessing membership for a given resource link id, the message type used in the message section must be LtiResourceLinkRequest, not basic-lti-launch-request even if this version of the service is used under a 1.1 integration.

The message section must use the LTI 1.3 claims format.

  A. Revision history

LTI Names and Role Provisioning Services v2.0 follows from, and replaces, the Membership Services v1.0 specification (later rebranded as 1EdTech Membership Services).

  A.1 Version History

Version number Release date Comments
Membership Service v1.024 May 20016The first version of the Membership Service specification.
Names and Role Provisioning Services v2.016 April 2019Replaces the Membership Service specification.

  A.2 Changes in this version

  B. References

  B.1 Normative references

1EdTech Learning Information Services v2.0. Linda Feng; W. Lee; Colin Smythe. 1EdTech Consortium. June 2011. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/lis/
1EdTech Learning Tools Interoperability® Core Specification v1.3. C. Vervoort; N. Mills. 1EdTech Consortium. April 2019. 1EdTech Final Release. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/lti/v1p3/
1EdTech Learning Tools Interoperability® Advantage Conformance Certification Guide. D. Haskins; M. McKell. 1EdTech Consortium. April 2019. 1EdTech Final Release. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/lti/v1p3/cert/
Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate Requirement Levels. S. Bradner. IETF. March 1997. Best Current Practice. URL: https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc2119
Web Linking. M. Nottingham. IETF. October 2017. Proposed Standard. URL: https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc8288
1EdTech Security Framework v1.0. C. Smythe; C. Vervoort; M. McKell; N. Mills. 1EdTech Consortium. April 2019. 1EdTech Final Release. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/security/v1p0/
The Organization Ontology. Dave Reynolds. W3C. January 2014. URL: https://www.w3.org/TR/vocab-org/

  B.2 Informative references

Learning Tools Interoperability v1.0 Outcomes Management. Stephen Vickers. 1EdTech Consortium. January 5, 2015. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/specs/ltiomv1p0/specification
1EdTech Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI)® Advantage Implementation Guide. C. Vervoort; J. Rissler; M. McKell. 1EdTech Consortium. April 2019. 1EdTech Final Release. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/spec/lti/v1p3/impl/
1EdTech Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) Security Version 2.0. Greg McFall; Lance Neumann; Stephen Vickers. 1EdTech Consortium. January 2014. URL: https://www.imsglobal.org/specs/ltiv2p0/security

  C. List of Contributors

The following individuals contributed to the development of this document:

Name Organization Role
Paul GrayLearning Objects
Viktor HaagD2L
Dereck Haskins1EdTech
Martin LenordTurnitin
Karl LloydInstructure
Mark McKell1EdTech
Nathan MillsInstructure
Bracken MosbackerLumen Learning
Marc PhillipsInstructure
Eric PrestonBlackboardEditor
James Rissler1EdTechEditor
Charles SeveranceUniversity of Michigan
Lior ShorshiMcGraw-Hill Education
Colin Smythe1EdTech
Claude VervoortCengageEditor

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Please contact 1EdTech through our website at http://www.imsglobal.org.

Please refer to Document Name: Learning Tools Interoperability Names and Role Provisioning Services 2.0

Date: 16 April 2019