Business Case: LSU Department of Chemistry

by | Feb 5, 2020

Recently, we began to collaborate with SCORM Cloud/Rustici on updating the SCORM Cloud Integration Business case on the Rustici/ website.  We’ve been honored to be the business case for integration with SCORM Cloud for 8 years now.

As part of this, we reached out to some of our customers and asked them how using Bright and SCORM Cloud has impacted their business and process.

We received this from the LSU Department of Chemistry, and it is included verbatim and unedited.

Bright/Scorm Cloud Results

Use Case

We are using scorm modules in a university chemistry course, as way to deliver content and practice.  The primary focus is on the practice where students explore concepts from different perspectives by solving problems and analyzing results.  Students begin the learning process in baby steps that eventually lead to deep mastery.

Reduced Support Issues, Tickets, Complaints 

Prior to using Bright/Scorm, we delivered scorm content through the University’s LMS, Moodle.  We also investigated 5 popular LMS SAAS products. Getting accurate grades from scorm activities was nearly impossible with these products!  This created a lot of frustration for the students and the faculty.

Permit me to be bold and state that Scorm is a protocol that is inherently troublesome because of the nature of its design!  Thoroughly tested Scorm content resides on expertly maintained servers. It is then downloaded to student laptops that are poorly maintained.  A spectrum of different web browsers running javascript and html5 with different success are used. Wifi connections around campus flicker on and off.  This results in loss of information and bookmarking errors.  

In addition to a high frequency of inaccurate grades, we also experienced two additional problems with the LMS’s we tested.  The first was related to poor scorm engines that lead to content freezing and not working as tested. Secondly, some scorm engines would allow students to continue working even when the student device had disconnected with the host server.  Students frequently complained of lost work. In addition, students soon discovered they could cheat the system by turning off their internet connection. That way they could discover the correct answers by mindlessly doing the practice materials offline and then reusing the answers when they went back online.  Roughly 20% of my students cheated by that method!

When we moved to Bright/Scorm Cloud, their Scorm Engine has powerful controls that eliminated most of these problems!!!

Increase in Productivity

At our University there is almost non-existent IT support.  When I requested help to fix some of the problems discussed above, I was told to abandon all of my scorm development and remake the content in Moodle.  I explained to our IT department, I could create scorm materials with high rates of learning that could not be done with Moodle. Still IT offered no help.  I attempted to use Scorm Cloud dispatch to deliver scorm content through Moodle. The results were not nearly as good as using Bright/Scorm Cloud.  

We are in the process of developing new programs of study that run in local high schools.  I needed a way to track progress at each high school by filtering xapi data by high school name.  Bright was able to supply me Javascript code in 3 days. The code worked flawlessly the first time.  I am now able to upload 1 course to Bright/Scorm Cloud and have it distributed to many sections of students at the University and local high schools without having to create separate sections of the course.  When a scorm module needs a correction, I just need to update 1 module. I can also track student progress in real time and quickly filter by school. This is a real time saver and the setup scales easily as the number of schools in the program grows!

In the days when we were using Moodle as an LMS, there was a large loss of time fixing errors in scorm grades.  We have migrated to a system that now relies entirely on xapi data for grade determination. With this system, grading errors have been eliminated.  In addition, we can now track student learning skills and correlate them with success on exams. We can ask questions such as: Do students who spend more time reading solutions for problems they missed do better on the examination?  These data help us refine scorm learning materials to enhance student outcomes.

Increased Course Completions

Our scorm practice materials are designed to deliver much more practice than is needed to reach competency.  Students are required to solve a minimum number of problems correctly at which point they have passed and may choose to stop.  A missed problem does not count against their grade because they can choose to keep working until they reach the minimum number of correct problems.  This design encourages the student to solve more problems and always reach a passing score. However, with help from xapi data, that tracks student work habits, I am able to demonstrate to the class that working beyond the minimum passing threshold improves success on examinations.  Students try that approach and find their success on exams increases! Slowly the whole academic culture in the classroom begins to evolve and a major fraction of the class is now working above and beyond the expectations of the course! Instead of just reaching competency, students strive to reach deep mastery!  This feat is only possible with Scorm Cloud’s, scorm engine that supports Scorm 2004 v4.0.  


John Hopkins

Professor, Louisiana State Universite Dept. of Chemistry