An Introduction to LTI

Communications Cloud Computing Concept

The LTI standard was first released in 2010 replacing the outdated Shareable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM) standard. Released in 2000, SCORM required the tool or application to be saved in a static downloadable package (.zip file) that couldn’t be updated dynamically.

Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) is a standardized framework for enabling learning platforms (tool consumers such as Blackboard) to integrate with third-party learning applications (tool providers such as CourseArc). Published by the IMS Global Learning Consortium, LTI eliminates the need for custom integration between LTI-compliant tool consumers and tool providers allowing organizations to choose from a variety of best-of-breed tools that can be deployed quickly and easily. LTI enables third-party tools to integrate seamlessly into an LMS without students even realizing that they’re interacting with another tool.

To put it in layman’s terms, think of the LTI standard as a universal charging cable that connects to any type of device: mobile phone, camera, flashlight, portable speaker, toy, etc.

CourseArc is a member of IMS Global and uses LTI to integrate our product with any LTI-compliant LMS. The benefits of using LTI are:


LTI allows an LMS to integrate dynamically updating content seamlessly from another source. Look at these examples of CourseArc content embedded in three different LMS providers.

CourseArc embedded in Canvas

CourseArc content embedded in Canvas

CourseArc embedded in Blackboard

CourseArc content embedded in Blackboard

CourseArc embedded in Schoology

CourseArc content embedded in Schoology


An LTI tool can be configured to pass grades to an LMS gradebook.

student progress and performance

Dashboard view of student progress and performance

screenshot of Canvas gradebook

Grades dynamically sent to Canvas gradebook


LTI requests can be configured to report student progress and performance.

  1. Current page, pages completed, and pages remaining
  2. Current progress (percentage of the course that has been completed)
  3. Current score
screenshot of student view of CourseArc progress embedded in LMS

Student view of CourseArc embedded in an LMS

Secure Authentication/Single Sign-On (SSO)

LTI allows an LMS to authenticate instructor and student credentials securely to a third-party tool verifying that the user is valid and allowed access. SSO support eliminates the need for an instructor or student to create and maintain multiple sets of credentials.

animation of signing into Blackboard

Animation of student signing into Blackboard and seeing CourseArc content

Better Student Experience

LTI allows organizations to choose from the best tools and resources available to ensure that their students are engaged in their online learning.

animation of student interactive

Animation of interactive CourseArc content

Management of Content

LTI makes it easy to manage the development, editing, sharing, and remixing of content. Instructional designers can create content that can be shared across an organization and any content updates are automatically available in shared instances. If your institution chooses to enable Deep Linking (formerly known as Content Item Message), instructors can easily add content to their courses from the LMS.

animation of deep linking

Animation of embedding CourseArc content into the Moodle LMS using Deep Linking

Select play to learn more about LTI. 

Want to learn more about CourseArc?

Free 30-Day Trial
Schedule a Demo
2020-03-05T12:20:25+00:00March 5th, 2020|Instructional Design, Online Learning|0 Comments

About the Author:

In 2014, Katie and her lead developer, Bethany Meyer, developed the concept for CourseArc and launched the beta version in 2015. She combines a broad educational technology background with program planning and project management expertise to help organizations deliver high quality learning solutions. Prior to starting CourseArc, Katie ran her own consulting company providing clients with program planning, instructional design, and eLearning solutions. She worked with companies and organizations to design and deliver eLearning, to conduct needs analysis and program review in order to make recommendations for improvement, to plan and deliver professional development for employees, to lead large-scale grant applications that include eLearning, and to provide documentation and process improvement to management. Previously, Katie worked for Baltimore County Public Schools (BCPS) as the secondary specialist in the Office of Instructional Technology. As a specialist with BCPS, Katie led the creation of teacher professional development using eLearning and developed over 10 courses using both blended and fully online formats using Desire2Learn and Blackboard. Later, Katie led several large scale, multi-million dollar federal grants focusing on eLearning with multiple stakeholders, partners, internal employees, and contractors. Katie received her BA degree in History and Education and MA Degree in Instructional Design from UMBC. In addition, she has completed many professional training courses such as PMP, Flash, ADL Co-Lab Scorm School, HTML/Dreamweaver, Captivate, and Articulate. Katie has also presented at national conferences on eLearning and is knowledgeable regarding current trends in technical and eLearning solutions, such as Learning Management Systems (LMS), writing for English as a Second Language Learners (ESL), accessibility requirements, HTML 5, Javascript, .css, and responsive design/mobile.

Leave A Comment

CourseArc is here to assist you in any way we can and want to share some specific supports we are implementing.COVID-19 UPDATE