What is SCORM for eLearning?

The SHAREABLE CONTENT OBJECT REFERENCE MODEL (SCORM) is a set of technical publication specifications that serves as a standard for web-based eLearning content. Writing to the SCORM STANDARD ENSURES COMPATIBILITY across delivery platforms much the same way as writing to HTML and CSS standards allows cross-platform and cross-browser delivery.

Just as the W3C publishes HTML and CSS standards, Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL), a government entity, publishes the standards for SCORM. Instead of delivering HTML content to the user across operating systems and browsers, SCORM delivers web-based eLearning content from within a Learning Management System (LMS), which distributes the content to the learners’ browsers.

The heart of SCORM is metadata, which describes the Sharable Content Objects (the SCO part of SCORM) or modules, regardless of their source. This allows for a “mix and match” approach to web-based learning rather than forcing content from one authoring tool or one content source as long as it displays in a browser. Further, a business can change its content sources, authoring tools and/or LMS vendors at will without worrying about compatibility issues because SCORM plays well with others SCORM-COMPLIANTLMSs.

SCORM not only enables “plug and play” learning modules and seamless integration with the LMS but also allows an archival path for out-of-date content. The current SCORM standard is SCORM 1.2.