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The ONYX Testsuite uses established standards in all areas to ensure a sustainable e-assessment solution. The ONYX Testsuite’s data model is based on the IMS QTI v2.1 specifications, meaning all content is available in standardised format. The results data is also shown in standardised form as an IMS QTI v2.1 report. The metadata is described using the open LOM standard.

The current publication (November 2012) of IMS LTI 2.0 is designed to keep making the ONYX interfaces available as LTI interfaces, even in future.

As a member of the IMS QTI working group, we are actively involved with further developing the specification documents. The ONYX Testsuite serves as the reference implementation for IMS QTI v2.1, and, in 2011 and 2014, received the Learning Impact Award for its sustainable approach using open standards and providing flexible, integrable assessment modules.



The globally recognised IMS Question and Test Interoperability (QTI) specification 2.1 forms the conceptual basis of the ONYX Testsuite. Almost all valuable functions of the Onyx Testsuite rely on this standard. Apart from content replaceability, further advantages are also generated by using QTI. The strict separation of content and layout and the XML-based mapping of all test and task content lay the foundations for an independent end format, and for editing existing content later on. The IMS QTI specifications stipulate replacing the test content as an IMS Content Package. This file archive contains a summary of all test data, the LOM metadata, and media therein. Formulae are described in MathML-Notation within the test data.

Apart from the standard storage of test data, ONYX also stores the result data in accordance with IMS QTI. The IMS QTI Report file contains all test analysis data, including the learner responses, time stamps and points scored. The result file is expanded for manual assessments, enabling the assessment process to be traced. The results can also undergo a CSV export.

The ONYX Editor allows test data to be imported and exported to other formats, such as IMS QTI v1.2. The system manufacturers gave IMS QTI v1.2 a very heterogeneous design, meaning imports and exports are system-specific. The IMS QTI v1.2 Import was tested for Blackboard, WebCT and OLAT. A PDF Export is available in the ONYX Editor to allow the compiled test data to also be used in paper-based test scenarios. Various conversions have additionally been made for proprietary formats.

Platinum Learning Impact Award


ONYX supports the open IEEE Learning Object Metadata (LOM) Standard which is recommended by the IMS QTI specification. The metadata is thus described in XML-Notation in the test data’s IMS Manifest. For each ONYX editor instance a metadata configuration can determine which metadata fields and values are displayed to the author in the ONYX Editor and how they should mapped to IEEE LOM.

Standard metadata profile

Standard metadata profile

Customized metadata profile

Customized metadata profile