Pocket Strata

We call our data and integration services and repository Pocket Strata.  Strata contains many of the key Provider services supported by Pocket’s platform.  If Pocket core is the body for the platform, Strata is the brain.  

Pocket Strata is a database of institutional metadata and tables needed to issue credentials, including the organization’s definition of skills, badges, degrees, and programs. Strata references the definitions for all the credential types defined by Pocket, known as  schemas.  Schemas themselves are hosted at individual URIs. Strata also contains all additional metadata around an organizational structure and definitions – this includes public-facing data like colleges, instructors, term dates and courses and classes descriptions. To obtain this information, as well as current information on a student’s achievements, Strata integrates directly with the SIS and/or LMS for the institution. 

Data Privacy

Strata does not store any PII or FERPA data; this data is passed along as verifiable credentials issued to the individual, who is then responsible for maintaining control of their private information.

Pocket Strata at a glance:

  • Stores institutional data used for credentials in a common model
  • Does not contain any personally identifiable information (PII) or FERPA data
  • Contain all business logic around credential properties and issuance rules
  • Manages credential schemas
  • Connectors for to institutional SIS/LMS as well as other third parties
  • Pocket core and Strata work together to create a richer and more automated user experience within the Pocket Mobile App
  • Strata is built and supported with AWS

Strata’s functional layers

Metadata – institutional and organizational definitions around the structure of the organization.  This includes such data as departments, grade types, roles and titles, programs and schools or colleges, and course and class catalog information.  This data is used to enrich the learner’s experience in the Pocket App and to support future data and analytics services provided to other parties.

Note that Pocket Strata constructs a common model for educational and professional organizations for the purposes of a seamless and consistent user experience, as well as being able to support educational and professional credential mobility.

References to users – Currently, user data is not currently stored in Strata except for universal unique identifiers (UUIDs) and DIDs, but is retrieved when needed via integration points.  We may later store some data encrypted if the requirement to list connected users real-time is required.

Credential schema references – Although credential schemas are correctly stored on public Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs), they are tracked and referenced using Strata for business logic and schema management purposes.

Every institution has the same set of schemas (credential types), but they are customized with the information specific to that institution.  Pocket also supports third party VC standards like OpenBadges v3, but these will not support the relationships to Strata data that Pocket schemas support.

Business logic and rules – Business logic (BL) is specific to any given institution. These rules are defined when the Pocket platform is integrated with the institution.  These rules regulate, define and dictate the interactions between users and the institutions. 

If schemas are the definition for credentials, BL is the rules on how these credentials are issued and/or recognized. For example, all institutions will issue the same course completion using the same credential schema. However, these credentials will be custom to the business logic and rules for that institution. 

Most business rules can be viewed and managed via the Admin Console provided for institutional users.  For example, if a badge represents a completion of a number of courses, administrators can use Pocket to set and manage these relationship definitions as they appear in Strata. Another example would be a set of skill credentials that would be issued upon successful completion of a course.

Integrations – All initial and subsequent data transfers and updates from institutional systems of record, and the rules and mappings for these are contained with Strata.  Similarly, integrations with other systems, like badging and skill systems, are implemented within Strata.  Additionally, all instructions to Core from within the Pocket Platform are mediated by Strata.

Strata API

Documentation for the Strata API can be found here.