How APIs Have Impacted Online Learning

By eLearning Inside
March 29, 2021

Learning institutions have been looking for ways through which they can deliver high-quality education that is optimized to meet each students’ requirements at lower costs. This has largely contributed to the growth of online learning. Furthermore, with advancements in technology and changes in student demands, it is expected that the online learning industry will continue to grow.

The adoption of applications programming interfaces (APIs) has been a necessary aspect of this growth. They are programming interfaces that allow applications to communicate with each other and share information. When it comes to online learning, they offer features that allow two different software applications to exchange information.

However, as much as APIs have played a major role in this industry, it should be noted that it has not all been rosy. This is because implementing the use of APIs requires numerous concerns, the foremost of which is cybersecurity.

API management consists of several components that allow one to control access, enforce policies on usage, collect and analyze data, and report any performance issues. Employing the right management components is a major contributor to the success of any API in the online learning industry.

APIs in Online Learning

APIs are easily and simply added to websites or integrated with other applications to extend the functionality of those applications. For instance, when developers are building a new online learning platform, they do not need to write code from scratch. They simply look for APIs that offer the functionality that they are looking for then implement it.

When an institution that offers its learning services through a website needs to expand the functionality of the website, they can simply implement an API. For example, let’s say that they want to add virtual classrooms. All they need to do is to look for the right API that offers virtual classroom functionality and implement it.

Why Have APIs Fueled Online Learning?

Initially, very few people could access eLearning tools, and a large percentage of those who could access them did not know how to effectively use them. Many successful software programs were siloed and limited because they could not easily integrate with others. This was because of the costs involved as well as the lack of expertise required when using these tools.

However, these concerns have been addressed by the popularity and ease of use of APIs. Today, learning institutions need to come up with a simple integration that implements APIs to benefit from the use of powerful online learning tools. The process of integration has so far been simplified addressing concerns that revolved around the expertise required.

Furthermore, we have many publicly available APIs that they can implement. These APIs have been built by experienced developers and implemented in many learning platforms. They are offering all learning institutions, whether small or large, a way to tap into the online learning industry.

The development of API management components helps in making sure that institutions are able to manage and keep a close eye on all the APIs that they implement. This has fueled the continued growth of online learning.


APIs are getting refined each day and are shaping the future of online learning. This means that online learning is going to grow even further and get better with time. Today, institutions are able to integrate APIs into their learning platforms easily, expanding the functionality of the platforms and giving their learners a way to easily access the platforms, learn, and get examined. This would not be possible without the use of APIs.

Featured Image: MarKus Spiske, Unsplash.