The New Chrome 80 May Cause Reporting Issues in LMSs

3 minutes

The latest update of the popular Chrome browser appeared to become a real challenge for eLearners and eLearning software providers worldwide, as it now does not allow AICC, xAPI, and SCORM learning items to get reported to some LMSs. However, there are several solutions, depending on your LMS and course format.

Why do LMSs not receive statistics from the new Chrome?

Chrome now disallows synchronous XHR during page dismissal, e.g., when a user leaves the page or closes it. It does so to improve the user experience, which means making the browser work faster and preventing data loss. However, synchronous XHR in the browser is involved in communication between eLearning content and LMSs.

In a nutshell, a course, a browser, and an LMS communicate the following way:

  1. While a learner is taking a course, the course collects statistics, e.g., how many slides the learner viewed, what answers he gave, how many attempts he took, etc.
  2. After the learner has finished the course and closed the page, the browser has a timeout period before the page shuts down (up to 2 seconds in Chrome).
  3. During this timeout, an LMS receives statistics from the content. By the time the page shuts down, an LMS gets all the necessary information about your learner’s progress. 

Since Chrome 80 does not use synchronous XHR, this means of communication between content and LMS software is not available.

Does iSpring Learn get stats from Chrome 80?

Here is some good news for iSpring customers! If you use iSpring Learn LMS, you will still get the same detailed information about your learners’ progress. We have updated data reporting so the stats are sent with no interruption. iSpring Learn LMS keeps tracking statistics for courses created with any authoring tool, e.g., iSpring Suite, Articulate Storyline, or Adobe Captivate, etc.

What about other learning management systems?

It depends on the course format and particular LMS that you use. Since SCORM and AICC courses still use synchronous XHR to send statistics to your LMS, you need to undertake one of these measures to be able to track the results:

  1. Send a request to your LMS software provider to change the process of data reporting.
  2. Ask your learners NOT to update Chrome to version 80 or higher.
  3. Advise learners to use another web browser for taking courses.

If you use iSpring authoring tools to build xAPI or cmi5 courses, you are all set! We’ve already released a special update which fixes the issue. The output content will work in any browser and accurately report progress and completion to LMSs.

To get this new version, just update your iSpring tool or contact our support team.

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8 comments on “The New Chrome 80 May Cause Reporting Issues in LMSs

  • …and of course you will be providing an update for this for people who do not pay the maintenance plan? Your software is rendered useless without it!

  • This is so true. One of the key selling points of the software is that it is still usable even without the need for maintenance plans or upgrading to the latest versions. This needs to be actualized. As it is, without the maintenance plan, one can’t get any form of technical support.

  • Hello!
    Thank you for your feedback!
    Tomorrow, we’ll release an update with the improved xAPI publishing. It’ll be free for all iSpring Suite 9 owners, not only for the maintenance plan customers.
    We’ll send instructions on how to apply the update to all our clients in tomorrow’s email.
    If you have questions, please contact our team.

  • Greetings! I work over at LearningCart LMS and a LOT of our customers use iSpring products (we are listed on your site as a compatible LMS). Chrome 80 has presented a lot of challenges but I think ultimately the solution in addressing these issues needs to be a collaboration between Authoring Tools and LMS providers.

    The issues we have seen our customers run into have to do with content attempting to save progress when a user exits their browser. The easy work around to this is for authoring tools to ensure their SCORM modules are calling LMSCommit() when progress needs to be saved. That is a standard SCORM call, can be called by the content whenever needed, and would completely circumvent the Chrome 80 issue because it can be called on each page/slide load or when completion is triggered.

    On our end we have implemented the appropriate updates to handle asynchronously saving data when a course exits – HOWEVER in some cases that is not able to completely address the issue. Chrome does impose limits on the length of data that can be saved when the browser window exits – both for async http calls as well as the sendbeacon work around that a lot of LMS’s have implemented. For many courses the length of the data being saved isn’t an issue, but we have seen if you have a SCORM 2004 course with a quiz, where it is saving question responses/interactions then your saved data can VERY easily exceed 64kb. Keep in mind the 64kb limit in SCORM 2004 is just for the value of data for a specific element – like suspend data – Its NOT intended to be a limit on the size of ALL CMI data. Again the simple work around from an authoring tool perspective would be to ensure that all data is being saved (via LMSCommit()) as updated instead of when a user closes their browser window. From what we have seen iSpring content does not seem to frequently save its progress using LMSCommit so in some instances data is lost when the browser is closed. This seems a particular issue in SCORM 2004 courses with a lot of interaction data. Just wanted to pass these thoughts in the hopes that perhaps your dev team could review them and perhaps factor them into a future update.

  • Hi Christian,
    Thanks for your comment. The information you shared is very useful and we’ll pass it on to our tech department. If you have any issues and need assistance, please contact our tech support team.

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