Storyline and Studio: How to Report Completion and Success Statuses to an LMS

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While some LMSs only track one completion status, many LMSs track both a completion status and a success status. Tracking both is the best way for an LMS to know what a failed attempt means. For example, did a learner fail a course because he or she hasn't completed it yet, or did the learner complete the course and fail to get a passing score? Knowing the difference makes it easier for the LMS to determine when the course should move from the learner’s course catalog to his or her transcript.

This article explains how to record completion and success statuses in an LMS. You’ll learn what these statuses are as well as which reporting option and LMS standard you should choose when publishing Storyline and Studio courses.

What are completion and success statuses?

The completion status monitors when learners finish a course. The completion status is either Complete or Incomplete.

The success status monitors how learners perform. Did they master or satisfy the course requirement? That is, did they view a certain number of slides, finish a quiz, or trigger completion? The success status is usually Passed or Failed, though it can also be Unknown.

Storyline and Studio courses automatically send status updates to your LMS. The status values you see in your LMS depend on the reporting option and LMS standard you choose and how your LMS interprets statuses.

Which reporting option should I choose?

When you publish a Storyline or Studio course, you get to choose one of these reporting options:

  • Passed/Incomplete
  • Passed/Failed
  • Completed/Incomplete
  • Completed/Failed

We recommend choosing Passed/Incomplete or Passed/Failed. These options are most likely to record both completion and success statuses in your LMS. (You might see an Unknown success status in your LMS until learners complete the course, then the status usually changes to Passed/Failed.)

Each LMS, however, can interpret statuses differently (especially for SCORM 1.2 courses). Be sure to test your course in your LMS before distributing it to learners to make sure you get the statuses you expect.

We use SCORM Cloud as our baseline for testing LMS output. If your LMS isn’t reporting the statuses you expect, try testing your course in SCORM Cloud for comparison. You can sign up for a free account, and it’s easy to see statuses when you exit a course, as shown in this example.

Does it matter which LMS standard I choose?

Storyline and Studio support AICC, SCORM 1.2, SCORM 2004, and Tin Can API (xAPI) standards. You can choose any of these to track both completion and success in your LMS. However, each LMS can interpret statuses differently, and some standards are better at producing consistent results.

AICC is the oldest LMS standard, dating back to 1988. While LMSs can track completion and success for AICC courses, we recommend using a more recent standard when possible.

SCORM 1.2 is also an aging standard, established in 2001. It only reports one status value, so LMSs must judge what that value means in order to record a completion status and a success status. As a result, you might see different completion and success statuses in different LMSs for the same SCORM 1.2 course. We recommend using a newer standard when possible.

SCORM 2004 is more robust than earlier LMS standards. It reports two status values, so it’s easier for LMSs to determine the completion and success statuses. Storyline and Studio support 2nd, 3rd, and 4th editions of SCORM 2004. We recommend using 4th edition for the best results since it often reports a success status of Unknown until learners complete the course. Then the status changes to Passed/Failed.

Tin Can API (also known as Experience API or xAPI) is the latest evolution of SCORM. It’s simpler to use and more versatile than other LMS standards. When you publish Tin Can API courses in Storyline and Studio, you don’t choose a reporting option, yet your LMS can still track completion and success. So there’s no guesswork or trial and error. If your LMS supports Tin Can API, we recommend it as your best option.

Summary

To sum it all up, this table lists the best combinations of LMS standards and reporting options for recording completion and success statuses in your LMS.

 

  LMS Standard

Reporting Option

  OK

  AICC or SCORM 1.2

Passed/Incomplete or Passed/Failed

  Good

  SCORM 2004 2nd or 3rd Edition

Passed/Incomplete or Passed/Failed

  Better

  SCORM 2004 4th Edition

Passed/Incomplete or Passed/Failed

  Best

  Tin Can API (xAPI)

(Not Applicable)

Since each LMS can interpret completion and success statuses differently, your LMS provider is best equipped to help if you don’t see the statuses you expect. Ask your LMS admin or provider if a specific reporting option or LMS standard is required to record both statuses.

We’re glad to help too! Just let us know. We might ask you to enable debug mode in your course so we can review communication between the course and your LMS. And if you’re able to invite our support engineers to test the course in your LMS, that’s even better!