Ensure Aligned Instruction Across Your Digital Learning Ecosystem
Now more than ever, K-12 educators are seeking digital-first solutions. At IMS Global Learning Consortium, we know that student success starts with the academic standards that states and districts use to set goals and measure student progress.
The IMS community launched the CASE Network because we believe that all state academic standards and national learning standards should be in the CASE digital format and available for anyone to use for any reason—at no cost. When states and organizations publish their standards through the CASE Network, educators, students, and families can trust the educational technology tools and resources provided by districts and schools to support instruction accurately.
Access CASE Network
Whether you’re an educator or edtech supplier, accessing the CASE Network is easy.
When accessing CASE Network, both IMS members and non-members must accept the Terms of Service before proceeding.
CASE Network Sponsors
The following IMS Contributing Members generously support CASE Network.
Sponsors can issue official documents through CASE Network and are represented on the CASE Network Advisory Board.
Find out how your organization can become a sponsor.
See all IMS Sponsorship and Networking Opportunities.
Frequently Asked Questions
The CASE Network of Competencies and Academic Standards provides a single, verifiable, trusted source of learning standards and workforce competencies in digital format, making it easier to support aligned instruction.
On behalf of the IMS Global community, IMS Global operates the CASE Network to provide a single, verifiable, trusted source of learning standards and workforce competencies in digital format, making it easier to support aligned instruction. In a sense, CASE Network is the software that allows state agencies and other standards bodies to author and publish their standards, course codes, and workforce competencies in CASE format, verify those frameworks for accuracy, and distribute those frameworks ubiquitous, much the way they would publish a website. The service is available to State Education Agencies, school districts, universities, corporations, and edtech suppliers to publish, distribute, discover, and consume learning standards.
- See a Video explaining CASE Network.
- IMS Global offers CASE Network Participation for accessing the standards via download or API.
Competency & Academic Standards Exchange® (CASE) is a data standard designed specifically for issuing official learning standards and workforce competencies in an interchangeable, digital format that works seamlessly across the various district data systems. By using software to create official learning standards in CASE format, Districts can generate a unique number, known as a Global Unique Identifier (GUID), for each framework and each standard within a given framework that is uniquely their own. These GUIDs make easier for various systems to share standards specific to the district, aligns resources to those standards, deliver assessments based on those frameworks, and report results without the human manipulation, i.e., the re-keying and “cutting-and-pasting,” that currently occurs.
Visit the CASE specification page for more information.
To get CASE Network started, IMS Global has verified and published the K-12 English Language Arts and Mathematics standards for the 50 U.S. states and started working directly with states to publish more of their standards. In 2020, these states and organizations currently include:
- Alabama Dept. of Education
- Florida CPALMS
- Georgia Dept. of Education
- Illinois State Board of Education
- Kentucky Dept. of Education
- Montana Office of Public Instr.
- North Dakota Dept. of Education
- Texas Education Agency
- South Carolina Dept. of Education
IMS is committed to building out full sets of state standards and adding other official standards frameworks.
Please visit the CASE Network to see all of the frameworks available.
CASE Network manages the distribution of academic standards and workforce competencies for states, higher ed institutions, workforce agencies, and other national and international standards authors. To properly reflect the status of the standards and competency frameworks, CASE Network uses the following adoption statuses for designating the accuracy of all materials issued through CASE Network:
- Official. A standards organization, such as a State Education Agency, can designate its own organization’s materials as “official” after the materials have been issued, reviewed, and verified by the organization's staff and/or approving body. When an agency, such as the Georgia Department of Education, uses its own CASE service to publish their standards as “Adopted” (see below), CASE Network can mirror those standards into CASE Network as “official.”
- Adopted. The CASE specification allows for “adopted” as the final or permanent document designation or status. The “Adopted” designation limits the ability to substantially change after the document is designated “adopted” by the standards author. To avoid confusion, CASE Network uses the “Official” designation and not “Adopted.”
- Verified. IMS Global designates official materials that it publishes on behalf of our community as “verified” when the materials have been assigned to the appropriate organization and the review and verification by IMS Global staff. When mirroring is in place, an official framework in CASE Network is marked “Verified” when the mirrored service designates the document as “Public Draft” (see below).
- Public Draft. The CASE specification provides for the publication of draft documents for public consumption, referred to as Public Draft. Public Draft documents are subject to substantive changes. To avoid confusion, CASE Network does not use the Public Draft designation.
- Private Draft. IMS designates materials, i.e., academic standards, frameworks, and other documentation, in CASE Network as “Private Draft” when the materials have been published and assigned to the appropriate organization, but the verification process by IMS staff has not been completed. These standards are not yet accessible to the public and are used by standards authors that are using CASE Network for authoring and distribution of official standards.
- Retired. IMS Global or Issuer designates materials as “retired” when the verified materials are no longer the most current version of the official materials of the standards organization.
- Deprecated. This status or designation is used on frameworks that are no longer current, but standards authors maintain the CASE frameworks to allow crosswalks or associations between older and new frameworks.
Suppliers who provide content in Learning Tools Interoperability® (LTI®) and Common Cartridge® formats and suppliers who provide LMS, LOR, Assessment and Gradebook systems cannot use a PDF to tag content and provide the “Metadata” needed to enable search, discovery and reporting of skill based alignments. PDFs, while trustworthy, are not interoperable and create “copy-and-paste” challenges when sharing standards across the different systems making up a digital learning ecosystem. This is terribly inefficient and fraught with error for districts trying to manage teaching and learning digitally.
The CASE Network uses the CASE specification from IMS Global, which makes academic outcomes/competencies machine-readable, exchangeable between systems, and interoperable. PDFs no longer have to be the main source of truth; using CASE instead - and the CASE Network - reduces time, the opportunity for error, and increases accuracy.
CASE Network is generously supported by IMS Global and through a CASE Network sponsorship program by a number of edtech suppliers that are committed to making official learning standards open and free for use. Current sponsors include ACT, McGraw-Hill, and SchoolCity powered by Illuminate Education.
The CASE Network Preferred Services Program recognizes organizations that are using both the IMS Competencies and Academic Standards Exchange® (CASE®) standard and CASE Network to provide value-added services and offer extra benefits to IMS members. Through this program, IMS provides edtech suppliers and institutions with world-class tools, resources, and services to rapidly adopt CASE and the official state academic standards in CASE Network.
State standards authors have a lot of work on their plate in terms of managing the standards adoption process from start to PDF on the State Education Agency website. IMS Global understands this and we are committed to assisting every state through this progress. That is why we have already verified and published the English Language Arts and Mathematics standards for all 50 states through CASE Network. IMS will work with states to build out full sets of state standards for every state in the months ahead, making it even easier for states to publish their official standards through CASE Network. Reach out to email@example.com for more information.
Here are a few reasons:
- By publishing a district set of official standards, even if they are a 100 percent “match” of their state standards, a unique set of identifiers are created and the “derivative” relationship between state standard and district framework is established. In this way, districts control their learning targets, but maintain a relationship with their state standards.
- The digital transformation process can take longer for certain organizations than others. In many cases, school districts feel the pain of misaligned resources and misreported results more acutely than state organizations. Districts that publish their own set of official standards can mark their standards as “official,” thereby enhancing the validity and stability of their identifiers by their edtech suppliers. When requested, suppliers can produce a list of district unique identifiers to demonstrate that they are in fact aligned to the official standards. IMS Global is developing a CASE Network certification that would provide districts with the means of certifying that their suppliers are using official district standards.
- By issuing their own version of state standards, districts can establish their own local “power standards” or “learning targets.” with explicit crosswalks to the state. Districts can build in different organizational hierarchies, i.e., classes, courses, units, play lists, etc., modify the human number scheme and semantic text, add notes, exemplars, scoring rubrics, etc. to better communicate the district’s learning standards to students, teachers, parents, and other stakeholders.
Awesome! We’re happy to have you in the CASE Network. A great example of a state that issues standards in CASE is Montana. They mention these CASE standards on their state website (see right side of page).
IMS is available to help. Some organizations - like the state educational agencies of Georgia and Texas - have a CASE provider application or service. If so, the CASE Network can mirror your framework. Please contact your service administrator to coordinate mirroring externally hosted CASE frameworks. By mirroring your frameworks, you can assure that vendors will be able to access and align to your standards with fidelity. If you’re not sure about your organization’s capabilities or want to learn more, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Lack of Transparency. Commercial alignment services have their place in providing expert resource alignments. What is often lacking is a transparent relationship with official standards organizations. CASE, as a standard, builds in that transparency in that each unique identifier is actually a public webpage that presents the content of the framework or item identified. CASE Network provides a public website for establishing that resolvability universally.
Limiting Licensing. IMS has focused on removing the barriers created by commercial licenses by seeking to preserve the unique identifiers for the issuing organization across their edtech suppliers. This is critically important for districts seeking to build digital ecosystems in terms of ensuring the efficiency and efficacy of their work.
Cost Savings. By providing a free service for issuers and suppliers, IMS seeks to remove the cost constraints inherent with relying on commercial services, especially as edtech moves into the Big Data / API economy when creating and storing vast amounts of data long-term, tagged commercial identifiers, is not financially feasible.
It should be noted that the commercial services are welcome to register and consume the CASE Network materials at no cost like any supplier.
An IMS website credential is required for login. CASE Network requires users to login to gain access to both the download feature in both JSON and Excel formats and the authenticated API. Users can also request a key-and-secret for the authenticated API and one will be provided. IMS credentials serve as credentials for the CASE Network. CASE Network Participants are also able to certify to the CASE specification as a Consumer. If you don’t have IMS credentials, you can register here: https://site.imsglobal.org/user/register.
Once logged into the CASE Network, see the menu item to Request an API. Complete the form. Once your registration is processed, IMS will provide you with the key-and-secret via email. IMS provides one set of credentials per organization. This is a manual process and could take up to two business days. If you do not receive your credentials or run into difficulty implementing it, please contact email@example.com.
Accessing CASE Network data using the CASE API requires implementation of the IMS Global Security Framework. Organizations that can request a free access key-and-secret by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or by request.