Investigating Teachers’ Understanding of IMS Learning Design: Yes They Can!

  • Michael Derntl
  • Susanne Neumann
  • Dai Griffiths
  • Petra Oberhuemer
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6383)


In order to understand whether conceptual obscurity is truly the reason for the slow uptake of IMS Learning Design (LD), we have initiated an investigation into teachers’ understanding of IMS LD outside of technological environments. Using paper representations (“snippets”) of IMS LD component and method elements at levels A and B, 21 higher education teachers from nine countries recreated a prescribed textual learning design. Results showed that the teachers achieved an average conformity of 78% with a prototypical expert solution after watching a 45-minute IMS LD introduction. Despite successfully using IMS LD’s elements, teachers reported having difficulties understanding the concepts environment, property, role-part, and condition. We conclude that the specification per se does not present an insuperable obstacle for teachers, and that from a usability perspective the calls for a new or modified LD specification might be premature, since most obstacles can be overcome with appropriate abstractions in LD tools.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    ICOPER: ICOPER Best Practice Network (2010),
  2. 2.
    IMS Global: IMS Learning Design specification (2003),
  3. 3.
    Griffiths, D., Liber, O.: Opportunities achievements and prospects for use of IMS LD. In: Lockyer, L., Bennett, S., Agostinho, S., Harper, B. (eds.) Handbook of Research on Learning Design and Learning Objects: Issues, Applications and Technologies, pp. 87–112. IGI Global, Hershey (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    van Es, R., Koper, R.: Testing the pedagogical expressiveness of IMS LD. Educational Technology & Society 9(1), 229–249 (2006)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Durand, G., Downes, S.: Toward Simple Learning Design 2.0. In: 4th Int. Conf. on Computer Science & Education 2009, Nanning, China, pp. 894–897 (2009)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Griffiths, D., Beauvoir, P., Liber, O., Barrett-Baxendale, M.: From reload to ReCourse: learning from IMS learning design implementations. Distance Education 30(2), 201–222 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    IMS Global: IMS Learning Design information model (2003),
  8. 8.
    Griffiths, D., Beauvoir, P., Sharples, P.: Advances in editors for IMS LD in the TENCompetence project. In: 8th IEEE Int. Conf. on Advanced Learning Technologies, pp. 1045–1047 (2008)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Neumann, S., Oberhuemer, P.: User evaluation of a graphical modeling tool for IMS Learning Design. In: Spaniol, M., Li, Q., Klamma, R., Lau, R.W.H. (eds.) Advances in Web Based Learning – ICWL 2009. LNCS, vol. 5686, pp. 287–296. Springer, Heidelberg (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Paquette, G., Leonard, M., Lundgren-Cayrol, K., Mihaila, S., Gareau, D.: Learning design based on graphical knowledge modelling. Educational Technology & Society 9(1), 97–112 (2006)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Koper, R., Olivier, B.: Representing the learning design of units of learning. Educational Technology & Society 7(3), 97–111 (2004)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hernandez-Leo, D., Asensio-Perez, J., Dimitriadis, Y.: IMS Learning Design support for the formalization of collaborative learning patterns. In: 4th IEEE Int. Conf. on Advanced Learning Technologies, Juensuu, Finland, pp. 350–354 (2004)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Duval, E., Verbert, K.: On the role of technical standards for learning technologies. IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies 1(4), 229–234 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Derntl
    • 1
  • Susanne Neumann
    • 2
  • Dai Griffiths
    • 3
  • Petra Oberhuemer
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Computer ScienceUniversity of ViennaAustria
  2. 2.Center for Teaching and LearningUniversity of ViennaAustria
  3. 3.Institute for Educational CyberneticsUniversity of BoltonUK

Personalised recommendations