Tag Archives: IMS Global Learning Consortium

Navigating the Learning Landscape: How an Educational Positioning System Brings the Cloud Down to Earth

by Hap Aziz

The Educational Positioning System (EPS) continues to gather steam and garner interest. Recently I attended the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative 2012 Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas, where I co-presented the session, “The Educational Positioning System: Guiding Learners Along Their Academic Path.” At that session, we brainstormed ways in which a potential EPS infrastructure would be leveraged to provide learners with greater control over the academic journey while also providing ways to control and distribute their own complete learning portfolio. At the same meeting, the IMS Global Consortium made a major announcement regarding the EPS, and you can read more about it here.

On Friday, March 16th of this year, I will have the privilege of presenting at the Fashion Institute of Technology EduTech Day SUNY-Wide Conference “Teaching Learning and Sharing in the Cloud,” again on the topic of the EPS. My presentation is titled, ” Navigating the Learning Landscape: How an Educational Positioning System Brings the Cloud Down to Earth,” and the session description will no doubt grab the attendees:

After all my years of schooling, all I have to show is this diploma and some transcripts?” Unfortunately, this is a common sentiment among students that have graduated from college. Many students question themselves regarding what tangible artifacts they have to show for their years of time spent in the classroom, since as far back as preschool. The challenge in higher education is that institutions own any Learning Management Systems that may be in place. As a result, the institutions also own the “data” generated by students, and there is no easy way for students to take that data along their life journeys, let alone access that data for more robust reporting of what they have accomplished. With the development of cloud computing, that model of institutional ownership has become outdated, and data can belong to the students. This new paradigm of accessibility is the foundation for the concept of the Educational Positioning System (EPS) which will allow students to measure and track their own progress—not only through any particular institution, but ultimately from the moment they participate in any type of formal learning activity (as far back as preschool), across all educational environments they attend throughout their lifelong learning experiences. Join Hap Aziz in this session as he explains the concept of the EPS and discusses the implications and promise for future students.

For those of you that are able, I would love to see you in attendance in support of moving the EPS initiative forward. After the conference, I will post my presentation slides here on the blog. Until then, I will leave you with this diagram that gives a (very) high-level overview of the EPS ecosystem.

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Filed under announcement, colleges and universities, education, education technology, Educational Positioning System, EDUCAUSE, EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative, future technology, Hap Aziz, higher education, technology

Open Sourcing Data.gov Will Facilitate Worldwide Educational Positioning System Adoption

by Hap Aziz

Yesterday on the White House website, Steven VanRoekel (U.S. CIO) and Aneesh Chopra (U.S. CTO) posted an announcement that the Obama administration has begun to release open source components of the Data.gov platform so that other governments may also launch their own versions of the Data.gov repository as part of the Open Government Partnership. The point of the Partnership is to improve government transparency, and currently there are 46 countries participating in the effort, and this first release is a result of the collaborative work of the United States and India on the platform.

This open source code release also presents an expanded opportunity for the Educational Positioning System (EPS) to become a truly global guide for academic decision-making. While the original EPS concept made no specific reference to scope of services, it has always been our desire to see its service area expand beyond national boundaries. As the travel realities of a global society become more widespread, the ability to share academic information across countries becomes as meaning as sharing that information across educational institutions and organizations with the United States.

The foundation for a successful EPS initiative involves data and metadata format standardization, certainly, as well as access to warehoused data in repositories such as Data.gov and the National Student Clearinghouse. Individual Learning Management System vendors will need to look to the cloud as a both the source and ultimate destination of all student-related content from transcripts to e-portfolio artifacts. Through the work of such organizations as the IMS Global Learning Consortium, we continue to build interest and momentum in “EPS 1.0” for our most basic, initial system design.


Filed under Data.gov, Educational Positioning System, Learning Management Systems, Open Government Platform