Rise Articulate SCORM Package not loading

Hello.
When I try to update the SCORM package in existing courses the Rise course doesn't load. I've tested the package with a new xAPI and it works fine.
This video explains the issue.
https://www.loom.com/share/8b014a855926467c86199657c72f37ea

I have been in touch with Nexus who make Grassblade and they have informed me:

"This is Articulate bug you will need to talk to them for a perfect solution. The content should not show blank if it doesn't find the resume lesson.

In your cause Articulate is changing the location ids, and when it get's old location id, it throws an error and stops functioning.

You will need to check with Articulate to find a good solution."


Thanks, Darren

14 Replies
Darren Coleman

Hi Karl,

No. The only change was to add links to two additional resources. Previously, these were downloaded from our www but we wanted to include them in the SCORM so it was easy for the learner to access them at the right point. 

A developer has advised:

"In future, when you plan to update an existing SCORM package. Please ensure no learners have the course in progress. Either request them to complete it or let them know that the module will be reassigned and they have to review from the beginning."

However, for me this doesn't feel practical / workable. It’s highly likely there will always be learners in progress so finding a time to update the existing SCORM would be problematic. Also, if a learner has finished/passed a course but would like to review the content (within the period of time they have access to the content) they’d be quite frustrated at having to go through the whole course again if they wanted to recap on a section towards the end of the couse. Do you see what I mean?

I look forward to your thoughts/advice. 

Renz Sevilla

Hi Darren! Thanks for reaching out!

If a learner completed a tracked quiz / completed the course, their quiz data will still be intact in the LMS, but they won’t be able to resume where they left off after an update. 

If you overwrite or add a new lesson in your course, then update the course in your LMS, some learners might see a blank page. If this happens, select More settings and click the Reset Learner Progress option when you export your course.

Please note that when learners launch the newly updated course in your LMS, their progress will be reset, but any completed quiz data will be retained.

Hope that clarifies how updating works for published courses in an LMS!

Darren Coleman

Thanks for this Renz but it still doesn’t explain why I can’t view the updated course in Rise (please see the initial Loom screen recording below). No changes in lessons have been made. The only change is that two downloadable resources have been incorporated into the SCORM package. No new lessons, quizzes etc.

I look forward to your response

Excuse the brief email 📲

Chino Navarro

Hi Darren! Thank you very much for taking the time to do a screen recording. We would love to take a closer look at your original and updated SCORM package. Please open a case here and send them over. Also, please include the link to your screen recording, so our support engineers can see what is happening. 

Darren Coleman

Hi Chino,

I've just sent a mail with the initial and updated SCORM packages.

The team at Grassblade are aware of this issue but are not sure why it hasn't been addressed:

"Hi Darren,

As mentioned before on the call as well as multiple times in the email, this is an Articulate bug.

I was able to point out the issue before joining the call and seeing the issue, because this is a known bug.

This hasn't been a major issue so far, enough that they could push Articulate enough to fix it, I don't know why. The issue exists since a very long time and in both SCORM and xAPI packages."

 

I find it hard to understand why that such a simple task as updating a SCORM package hasn't been addressed in order to deliver the best / most up to date learner experience.

I'll keenly await your response and share the findings with my developer, Grassblade and the Rise community!  

Pankaj Agrawal

Hi @Renz and @Chino,

It is a little odd that you have gone as far as adding a  "Reset Learner Progress" setting. However, you haven't fixed the javascript error that comes up when the content is not able to find a matching lesson for the bookmark.

A simple fix could be sending the user to the start of the course, if the bookmark lesson is not found in the course. This would be an automatic  "Reset Learner Progress" without the need for the setting. 

Probably I am not able to understand the full rational behind it, but I do know that there are some upset clients like Darren, and their concern is very legitimate. 

Regards,
Pankaj Agrawal
GrassBlade 

Darren Coleman

I wanted to let the community know that it looks as if the issue with updating a Rise Articulate course is a bug which is SCORM Cloud (for testing purposes) gets around / circumvents by killing the resume feature. This means that SCORM Cloud is not a true test of the software and so gets around the problem. Correct?

Pankaj from Grassblade xAPI (who has been awesome notes):

"On GrassBlade, you simply upload the new version, and it automatically kind-of overwrite's the course files. You do not need to make any other changes. However, unlike SCORM Cloud GrassBlade doesn't "reset their progress" currently so that users are able to resume where they left off even after update of the content. However, Articulate's bug doesn't allow the user to load the content in some cases after the update of content."

Can someone at Articulate please help me get to the bottom of this? I'm in a situation where I simply want to update a course but a bug in the Rise Articulate software is preventing me from doing this. 

 

 

 

ADA Egret

Hello everyone,

Please allow me to share what I currently know about this issue. To my knowledge, this kind of issue happens when an LMS updates a course package, but maintains old student resume data. Sadly, course package versioning is outside the scope of AICC/SCORM/xAPI/cmi5, so there are no standards for LMS vendors or eLearning authoring vendors to follow when updating an existing course package (you might see where this is already going).

Because there's no standards, whenever an LMS allows for the updating of course packages for students who are still in-progress, there's always going to be some wiggle room for problems to occur. There's no standards for anyone to follow, after all! What do you do with old student data? What do you do with old course package version data? These are questions with currently no standardized answers within the eLearning industry, which leads to where we are now.

I've found that when you export a newly modified Rise course the structure of the course can easily become changed. Old lessons can easily get new IDs (like mentioned in Darren's original post). Most LMSs out there recognize this potential for a "desync" between old student data and new course content, and so most LMSs will automatically deleted old attempt data in order to give the student a new attempt from scratch when they next launch the course (if the LMS even supports updating existing course content for in-progress students in the first place). I've found that this is how SCORM Cloud usually works. It'll erase old student data from packages that are updated.

I believe this is why the "Reset Learner Progress" feature was added. If the course somehow detects a desync between the newly published course, and the old student data, it will reset the learner's progress and manually clear out the old student data and resume the course.

It's sadly doing the best it can, with no standards that exist. I have noticed that on occasion if you make some very minor edits in the original course, that Rise can sometimes resume with no problem! That's why I believe the "Reset Learner Progress" is a toggle, and not always enabled. Some course updates do actually work without the need to clobber previous student attempt data!

I've run into this kind of problem with Moodle before in the past, too (got around it by using the Reset Learner Progress toggle). There's no easy fix for it that I could find in all my years of researching the problem. Without any standards in the industry on how to update a course package in an LMS (and handle the old student data) these kinds of issues will always persist. :(

Renz Sevilla

Thanks, ADA Egret for that insight!

Hi Darren! While some LMSs have a feature to allow admins to overwrite an existing course with a new version, this function is outside the scope of documented AICC, SCORM, xAPI, and CMI5 standards. Updating creates room for an updated course to cause trouble when "bookmarking data" is used to resume a course from a specific point or when missing or malformed suspend data doesn't match up with the course's data, causing an error when loading.

We designed a setting where course authors can always reset the learner's progress if an updated course presents a blank page to learners who resume after the update. Minor updates to a course package don't always require the complete flushing of in-progress student data, but if the blank page appears, you can set the course to reset learner progress to start the course again. If that setting isn't working and learners are still stuck, we'll be happy to help more!

Darren Coleman

So for people like me that want to sell online courses - continuously - and not in cycles so that old courses can be deleted then updated - how can I give learners a continuous experience?

Based on the above Learner A could be 50% of the way through a course then I update the course so they have to start again. Resetting the learner's progress is a terrible learner experience. 

If the course content was to be available in blocks of time this wouldn't be an issue as the updates could happen during registrations but not active learning.  

Darren Coleman

Thank for taking the time to give such a thorough explanation - in clear and simple English. Awesome. 

So for people like me that want to sell courses continuously online there is really only the following option. 

  • Don't sell courses continuously but in blocks of time or have an annual update window i.e. a maintenance period. 
  • Inform all learners in advance of this maintenance period so they a) need to finish it before that date or b) be prepared to start again. 

I suspect this is why the likes of Udemy don't allow SCORM. 

Darren Coleman

I thought everyone would be interested in my latest exchange with the Rise team:

 

"Thank you for your email Tyler.

I’m at a loss with this point.

“this can be due to what I’m changing in the course before updating the package in the LMS”

There is no need to change anything in the SCORM as my screen recording clearly shows there is an issue.

I will happily set up a video call to replicate the issue for you.

I believe Pankaj’s questions, which are more technical in nature need to be addressed.

I do not consider the matter closed as I fail to see how your approach is testing like for like.

There’s a growing community of people interested in this on the Community thread so I’ll share your response with them as well.

Regards, Darren

Excuse the brief email 📲

On 17 Aug 2021, at 21:44, Articulate Support <support@articulate.com> wrote:

Hi Darren,

I have been testing this in other LMS’s outside of SCORM Cloud. While I have been unable to replicate this issue consistently, this can be due to what I’m changing in the course before updating the package in the LMS. For example, changing text before overwriting a course may not affect resuming for learners, but adding or deleting slides can cause progress to be lost for users currently active in the course.

We have acknowledged that content won’t resume for learners if you update (overwrite) your content on an LMS. That article, published in July of 2017, can be found here:

https://articulate.com/support/article/content-wont-resume-after-updating-course-files

I understand this issue with resume functionality is affecting your course, but it is working as designed.

Let me know if you need anything else!

Tyler Braddick"