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Blackboard Help

SIS Integration Types

Blackboard Learn supports five types of integrations, and there is no limit to the number of integrations a system may have. It is unusual, though possible, to have different types of integration on a single system. Communication from the SIS is one-way to Blackboard Learn, so the type of integration used is based on the type of data format produced by the source SIS system.

When using IMS Enterprise XML based integration types - IMS Enterprise 1.1, or IMS Enterprise 1.1 Vista - you cannot create data and update that data with another integration type and then continue to use IMS Enterprise to manage the updated data. This is due to necessary mapping of data within the product. You may however create data using the Enterprise XML based integration types and further manage that data with LIS and Snapshot Flat File.

Integration Types
Integration Type Description
IMS Enterprise 1.1 Use this Integration Type when the source system generates IMS standard compliant XML.

Enterprise 1.1 is the ‘father of LIS'. It has been supported in Blackboard Learn for many years and is a staple of SIS integrations whether event-driven or snapshot file-based.

To learn more about IMS, see http://www.imsglobal.org

IMS Enterprise 1.1 - Vista Use this Integration Type when the source system is CE or Vista. To learn more about IMS, see http://www.imsglobal.org.
IMS Learning Information Services (LIS) 2.0 Use this Integration Type when the source system is LIS-compliant, or when upgrading your Banner to the latest LIS-compliant version.

LIS uses web services and is an event-driven model in which the LIS-enabled SIS calls Learn LIS web services passing the data to Learn where it is processed and the Learn database is updated.

To learn more about IMS, see http://www.imsglobal.org/lis/

Snapshot Flat File Use this Integration Type when the source system generates Snapshot Flat Files from Blackboard Learn. Snapshot provides the ability to integrate using point-in-time data as provisioned by the SIS with two supported integration types (read: data formats) within the SIS Framework for Snapshot – Snapshot XML and Snapshot Flat File (or delimited data). The latter, Snapshot Flat File, is the ‘go-forward’ supported format and receives updating to support new data objects. Snapshot XML only receives maintenance updates.
Snapshot XML Use this Integration Type when the source system generates Snapshot Flat Files from Blackboard Learn.

After the SIS integration has been created, you can map the source fields to the available Blackboard Learn fields. Blackboard recommends that integrations begin in the Testing status. Selecting this status allows you to test the integration and fix any issues that may arise before committing to the integration. Testing status turns on logging and runs through the data mapping and exchange without actually changing your system. Use the log files to discover, diagnose, and repair any errors.

After testing is complete, you can set the status to Inactive or Active. If you set the status to Inactive, the system will not process requests or update data in the database. If you set the status to Active, the system will process requests, update data in the database, and be visible to the users. You can change the status at any time.

Logs are provided in an intuitive format as part of SIS integration. Logs are filtered using an advanced search method that includes the type of error, the integration, and a date range. New log entries are easily visible, with a count attached to the type of log entry. The logs are refreshed to retrieve the latest count, and details of each type of log.