Why You Should Care About the Learning Registry?

November 19, 2012

By Farhad (Fred) Saba, Ph. D.
Founder and Editor, Distance-Educator.com

Dr. Fred Saba

2012 has been characterized by several new developments in the field, one of which has been the maturing of the Open Educational Resources (OER). If you are interested in sharing of resources, then you must also care about The Learning Registry (TLR). TLR is a joint effort of the US Departments of Education and Defense, with support of the White House and numerous federal agencies, non-profit organizations, international organizations and private companies. It is designed to make sharing of educational resources much easier in a digital world. With the Learning Registry, many kinds of information about learning resources can be shared, but the open community that is developing the registry is currently concentrating on a few key areas:


  • Data about how learning resources relate to, or align with, standards,
  • Ratings and opinions about resources from educators from several state websites, and
  • Descriptions of learning resources from many education-oriented portals and
  • repositories.

If you have just been introduced to The Learning Registry, and would like to delve deeper to it, you may be interested in reading a recent paper on the subject titled Building a Network of Resource-Sharing States: An Overview of the Learning Registry for State Decision Makers and Strategists.  This white paper describes some of the primary concepts of The Learning Registry and offers how two eduction portals in California have integrated their resources to the Registry.

If you wish to dig deeper, you  might be interested in reading a number of papers and idea pieces just presented by researchers in the United Kingdom on the topic in the JLeRN Experiment. This project  has been a collaboration among UK universities and JISC, the UK’s expert on information and digital technologies for education and research. During the study, JLeRN members set up an experimental node to help better understand the potential of the Learning Registry in a UK Higher Education context. The funding for JLeRN has come to and end, and so they have brought together some of the lessons they have learned.

Also of interest is the ENGrich project in which the researchers at the University of Liverpool have set up their own node.