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The draft Reference Architecture for Teaching and Learning (RATL) is a product of the ITANA Learning Working Group in 2012-2013.

This site is under development as we continue to incorporate and expand on the working group's findings from 2013. Thank you to all the working group contributors!


The Reference Architecture for Teaching and Learning (RATL) is a resource for architecture in teaching and learning enterprises, primarily institutions of higher education. Using the RATL, architects and other leaders can map their enterprise, assess its maturity, model the effect of new goals, and plan for proposed changes.

The RATL was developed by the ITANA Learning Working Group in 2012-2014 in response to ongoing disruptive changes in the practice of teaching and learning, and the perceived need for a reference architecture that bridges existing standards efforts and discussions in the higher education community.

For a summary view of the topics covered in the RATL, see the Teaching and Learning Capability Map.

Using the RATL

Modeling Changes


Each scenario in the RATL describes a common set of circumstances in a teaching and learning enterprise, a typical goal for change, and considerations for responding to the change. Scenarios are linked to assets in the RATL Library that may be affected or needed, and may include real-life case studies from other enterprises.

  • Scenario
  • Scenario
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The RATL Library

The RATL includes a reference model for understanding a teaching and learning enterprise. The reference model consists of interrelated assets that enable a typical enterprise to carry out its mission, including business capabilities, roles, processes, data, and tools.

The Teaching and Learning Capability Map introduces the capabilities and related assets found in the following library sections:

Capability Library

Capabilities summarize what a teaching and learning enterprise needs to be able to do to succeed.

Roles Library

An enterprise's capabilities are supported by people acting in roles.

Process Library

To carry out its capabilities, an enterprise creates business processes.

Data Library

In carrying out its capabilities, an enterprise consumes and produces data.

Tools Library

To carry out its capabilities, an enterprise implements tools.

Related Standards

Standards help to define how assets should be selected and designed to support capabilities. The working group captured information about standards on this page:

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