The National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA) is a professional membership association for certified athletic trainers and others related to the athletic training profession. Their mission is to represent, engage, and foster the continued growth and development of the athletic training profession. NATA provides a robust variety of educational resources to help athletic trainers stay up to date with the latest clinical teachings and techniques. NATA's Professional Development Center (PDC) offers e-learning courses that allows members to learn and earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) through online quizzes, courses and webinars. Athletic trainers are required to complete a certain number of CEUs each year in order to remain current with the Board of Certification.
In 2015, NATA decided it was time for an upgrade and explored learning management systems that would meet their current and future needs. The goal of the new PDC website was to deliver online education to athletic trainers that are members of NATA and track their CEUs in a system that integrates with their existing Drupal Content Management System as well as a new membership management system. One of their requirements was to be able to integrate Articulate Storyline to build interactive slideshows and quizzes, however in order to make the Articulate packages work in the new system, the Tin Can API would need to be utilized. This would require them to have a Learning Record Store (LRS) to manage their data. Rather than signing up with a third party provider which would incur monthly fees and require their data to be hosted with the provider, they sought to develop their own LRS within Drupal. Knowing Skvare’s experience with custom development, Drupal, and CiviCRM and our ability to make them all work together, Skvare was a perfect fit for the job.
NATA wanted more options than their previous learning management system allowed. Administrators wanted to give course creators the flexibility to build courses with a variety resources - pages created within their CMS, external links, files, videos, interactive slideshows, and quizzes. They also wanted to unify their membership system with both the CMS and LMS so it could stored and managed all within one place. There was no existing suite of modules that provided all the functionality they required. Existing modules were used to build the website, but many modules Skvare had to develop from scratch, particularly the LMS and LRS modules.
NATA also wanted to ensure that they still had access to their old data. There were approximately seven years of course data from that system that needed to be imported into the new system. The data included Importing old quizzes, content and videos into the new system. The challenge was that the legacy data had a different database structure than the one used by Drupal. This would require additional planning, development and testing to ensure everything stays intact.
Skvare developed a collection of about 20 modules, called the Learning Management Suite, to run the system. This module suite not only provides the ability to create course content for the LMS, but also provides the ability for users to purchase courses with credits, generate LMS pass records, and restrict access to other sections of the courses.
Our senior developer, Mark Hanna, used and extended the Drupal TinCan API module and developed the Tin Can Learning Record Store Drupal module integrating directly with the Learning Management System. This allows all of the user learning interaction data to be stored in Drupal as Drupal Entities. With full Views integration, it allows us to create just about any type of report that we can dream up. The LMS also has local access to all learning interactions to effectively and flexibly handle complex course passing rules. This is the first completely Drupal-native Tin Can API integration, that allows you to store and manage your data without using a third-party vendor such as Learning Locker.
Learning Management System
Our Drupal-based Learning Management Suite is a full-featured, Tin Can (eXperience API) compliant LMS. It will work with packages created with Tin Can API compliant learning packages, such as the ones produced within Articulate Studio or Articulate Storyline. Review a full list of LMS features in the Learning section of our site.
Learning Record Store
Thanks to the Learning Record Store (LRS), all the learner’s progress and actions taken in their coursework are stored within the system. This allows to create reports such as:
- Course roster
- Course progress, scores, and responses to questions
- Member’s previous participation by timeframe
- Registration by company
- First time students
- Enrollment changes over time
- Budget summary
Various permission levels for different types of users. The LMS includes roles such as Editor, LMS User, LRS Authority User and Administrator to give users access to the relevant parts of the site.
The online courses have specialized tracks such as Prevention, Clinical Evaluation, Diagnosis, etc. Trainers who successfully complete a track and are issued a certificate to verify mastery of the course content.
Multiple Payment Methods
Some of the coursework is free, and some of it requires credits or payment that can be processed through an integrated payment processor. Users can purchase multiple courses at one time and use a checkout using a combination of member credits and real money.
Not only is the PDC website theme designed to have a similar look and feel to the parent website, nata.org, but it also utilizes Bootstrap’s Responsive Web Design theme. This allows users to complete courses on mobile devices and tablets.
The new NATA PDC website has helped the organization take full control of their system. Course creators can leverage existing content, content created within Articulate Storyline, HTML5 videos, and virtually any piece of content on the internet to create several types of courses and course structures. A fully integrated Content Management System, Learning Management System, Learning Record Store, and Membership Management System has allowed NATA to cut costs by getting rid of 3rd party services and take full ownership of all their data. Overall, NATA is proud of their new product. See the video they’ve put together to highlight some additional features for their users.