Binding explained . . . in a little over 140 characters

Finding common understandings is a perennial issue for those of us working in educational technology and lack of understanding between techies and non techies is something we all struggle with. My telling some of the developers I used to work with the difference between formative and summative assessments became something of an almost daily running joke. Of course it works the other way round too and yesterday I was taken back to the days when I first came into contact with the standards world and its terminology, and in particular ‘bindings’.

I admit that for a while I really didn’t have a scoobie about bindings, what they were, what the did etc. Best practice documentation I could get my head around, and I would generally “get” an information model – but bindings, well that’s serious techie stuff and I will admit to nodding a lot whilst conversations took place around me about these mysterious “bindings”. However I did eventually get my head around them and what their purpose is.

Yesterday I took part in a catch up call with the Traffic project at MMU (part of the current JISC Assessment and Feedback programme). Part of the call involved the team giving an update on the system integrations they are developing, particularly around passing marks between their student record system and their VLE, and the development of bindings between systems came up. After the call I noticed this exchange on twitter between team members Rachel Forsyth and Mark Stubbs.

I just felt this was worth sharing as it might help others get a better understanding of another piece of technical jargon in context.

5 thoughts on “Binding explained . . . in a little over 140 characters

  1. I hope I did understand it! For other readers, the main issue here is to be able to distinguish the summation elements of assessment from which we want to extract marks (and feedback if we can) for re-use (copy of marks to definitive student record system (SRS), feedback to personal turtles?), from other formative assessments which may take place in the VLE and which should not be transferred to the SRS.

  2. Hi Irvin

    Yes, this isn’t formal specification bindings, but as a first step to understand the principles behind linking data structures between systems, I still think this is a useful explanation.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *