What Improved with v1.1 of OneRoster?

It's been about a year since IMS Global released the v1.1 specification for OneRoster, a data standard for securely sharing roster, course, and enrollment information between systems. This upgrade to the OneRoster spec includes four primary enhancements: it enables you to synchronize grades, associate students with digital course materials, add start and end dates, and import data faster.

Grade Passback

The first OneRoster spec solved the roster synchronization problem, but educators still spend far too much time entering grades. For example, a district with 35,000 students sends an average of 50,000 results per week to the student information center (SIS) and/or gradebook! OneRoster v1.1 includes horizontal grade passback and grading categories, line items (or learning activities), and results. Grading categories and line items allow educators to assign weights to activities, such as test scores, assignments, participation, homework, quizzes, etc. Results are the union of student effort against line items. With these enhancements, you can adopt the spec and be in control in how the data gets back to the SIS. Image_GPBBenefits

Watch Kimono's short demonstration of how grade passback works, sending assignment grades from Canvas to the SIS (shown with PowerTeacher Pro).

Associated Course Material

Version 1.1 also added what IMS is calling “resources” within courses and classes. Publishers will be able to provide schools with the specific content resources based on roster data. Inclusion of this data is the first step to tying student activities and results to a learning object, such as digital content.


Enrollment data shows whether an individual (student, teacher, administrator, proctor, etc.) is participating in a course. The 1.1 version of the spec transmits a start and end date, rather than just active or inactive. This makes pre-enrollments and pre-term drops easier.

CSV Support

The fourth enhancement to the 1.1 spec is better support for CSV files. With the previous version of OneRoster, all files had to be included in the transmission every time. This made ingestion cumbersome, especially for larger districts. With OneRoster 1.1, a manifest describes the included files. Thus, if you are only updating students, you only need submit the student file with the manifest. This significantly reduces import times and makes it easier to adopt the standard.

Reach out to us! Kimono can help you use OneRoster to take your data integrations further.

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