Template:Context The IMS Question and Test Interoperability specification (QTI) defines a standard format for the representation of assessment content and results, supporting the exchange of this material between authoring and delivery systems, repositories and other learning management systems. It allows assessment materials to be authored and delivered on multiple systems interchangeably. It is, therefore, designed to facilitate interoperability between systems[1].

The specification consists of a data model that defines the structure of questions, assessments and results from questions and assessments together with an XML data binding that essentially defines a language for interchanging questions and other assessment material. The XML binding is widely used for exchanging questions between different authoring tools and by publishers. The assessment and results parts of the specification are less widely used.


QTI was produced by the IMS Global Learning Consortium, which is an industry and academic consortium that develops specifications for interoperable learning technology. QTI was inspired by the need for interoperability in question design, and to avoid people losing or having to re-type questions when technology changes. Developing and validating good questions is time consuming, and it's desirable to be able to create them in a platform and technology neutral format.

QTI version 1.0 was materially based on a proprietary Questions Markup Language (QML) language defined by QuestionMark, but the language has evolved over the years and can now describe almost any reasonable question that one might want to describe. (QML is still in use by Questionmark and is generated for interoperability by tools like Adobe Captivate).

The most widely used version of QTI at the time of writing is version 1.2, which was finalized in 2002. This works well for exchanging simple question types, and is supported by many tools that allow the creation of questions.

Version 2.0 was released in 2005, with v2.1 due for release in 2008[2]. 2.0 addressed the item (individual question) level of the specification only, with 2.1 covering assessments and results as well as correcting errors which had become apparent in 2.0. Version 2.x is a significant improvement on earlier versions, defining a new underlying interaction model. It is also notable for its significantly greater degree of integration with other specifications (some of which did not exist during the production of v1): the specification addresses the relationship with IMS Content Packaging v1.2, IEEE Learning Object Metadata, IMS Learning Design, IMS Simple Sequencing and other standards such as XHTML. It also provides guidance on representing context-specific usage data and information to support the migration of content from earlier versions of the specification.

Because v2.0 was limited to items only, and v2.1 has yet to be formally released by IMS (although two public drafts plus an addendum are currently available), uptake of v2.x has been slow to date. The delay between the release of 2.0 and 2.1 (over three years to date) may have hindered uptake to some extent, with developers reluctant to commit to v2.0 knowing that v2.1 is in development. The use of a profile of v1.2.1 in the IMS Common Cartridge specification may exacerbate this. A number of implementations are emerging, however, and uptake may increase once the specification is finally available in a stable form.


Date Version Comments
March 1999 0.5 Internal to IMS
February 2000 1.0 public draft
May 2000 1.0 final release
August 2000 1.01
March 2001 1.1
January 2002 1.2
March 2003 1.2.1 addendum
September 2003 2.0 charter Initiation of working group
January 2005 2.0 final release
January 2006 2.1 public draft
July 2006 2.1 public draft version 2
April 2008 2.1 public draft addendum
late 2008? 2.1 final release

Applications with IMS QTI supportEdit



External linksEdit

it:Question and Test Interoperability

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