Watershed Glossary

As you're getting started on Watershed, here are some common terms that are handy for you to know: 


An Activity is anything you want to want to report on in Watershed. Examples of activities include courses, videos, assessments, and classes.

Activity ID

An Activity ID is a unique identifier for a particular activity. Watershed uses Activity IDs to group information related to your activity. Activity IDs look like URLs.

Activity Provider

An Activity Provider is a program that sends data into Watershed.

Activity Report

The Activity Report provides in-depth analysis of an activity. Beyond providing insights on how learners perform, this report can perform advanced question analysis to make sure organizations are asking the right questions in their assessments.

Advanced Configuration

Advanced Configuration provides access to additional reporting features unavailable in Simple Configuration, enabling more control over creating and editing reports in Report Builder. Using JSON, control what data should be included in reports and configure how that data is displayed.

Area Admin (User Role)

The Area Admin User Role is designed for users who need some administrative permissions, but should not have access to all data and all users. They have many of the same permissions as Global Admins, but those permissions are restricted to a certain population. For example, a global organization might have teams of Area Admins responsible for each territory.


Assessments are quizzes, tests, observations and other interactions that assess learners and typically involve passing/failing and scoring.

Bar Report

The Bar Report displays learner performance with a bar chart. It displays horizontal or vertical bars based on measure values. You can use multiple measures on the same chart or set up a series of charts that measure anything from score to KPI measurements.

Certified Data Source

A Watershed Certified Data Source is a program that has been formally recognized by Watershed as a source of data. This includes, but is not restricted to, xAPI Activity Providers (e.g. Watershed can pull in data via CSV). To be recognized as a Watershed Certified Data Source, the following criteria must be met:
1. It must be possible to easily connect the software to Watershed following clear documentation.
2. Data sent must be detailed enough to answer typical questions reporting users may have about the tracked activity.
3. Data sent must be accurate and bug free.


Competencies are skills, knowledge and abilities evidenced by learners during the course of a program. Competencies are tied to a tracked activity or activities that demonstrate competence.

Consultant (User Role)

The Consultant User Role is designed for users who need to be able to see aggregate data within Watershed, but should not be allowed to see personally identifiable information or edit dashboards.

Contributing System

A Contributing System is a program that sends data into Watershed.

Correlation Report

The Correlation Report allows you to explore relationships between multiple performance measures and find dependent relationships. It’s ideal to help show a relationship (or lack of relationship) between scores on sales training and actual sales numbers.


A Comma Separated Variable (CSV) file is a simple file format that is often used to import and export data from a range of applications. CSV files can be opened and edited using spreadsheet software but only contain data and not formatting or formulas.

Custom Connector

A Custom Connector is a piece of software specifically developed for a project that connects an application to a Learning Record Store (LRS) such as Watershed LRS. Normally the connector extracts data from the target application either using that application's proprietary API or by querying the applications database. It then sends the data on to the LRS in xAPI format, normally as Statements.


Dashboard is a live-updating collection of reports in Watershed.

Data Permissions

Organizations can store massive amounts of learning data, and it is important that the right people see the right data about the right learners. With Watershed's Data Permissions, you can control which of your learners' data Watershed users can see.

Data Search

Watershed is powered by moments of activity called interaction statements. Sources ranging from mobile apps to learning management systems are connected to Watershed, and as learners perform actions in these sources, statements are sent into Watershed. The Data Search shows every statement that has been sent to your Watershed account and gives you tools to search and to troubleshoot data issues.

Detail View

The Detail View of a report shows a full page view of a Watershed report.


Several reports (such as Leaderboard and Line Reports) aggregate data using dimensions. In Report Builder, dimensions are represented by the Organized field. Examples of dimensions are organizing a report by person, group, day, week, month, year, activity, or activity type.

Essentials LRS

The Essentials LRS Dashboard is a static dashboard that gives an overview of all of the data in your account. It's intended to help you lay the foundation on the path toward more robust learning and training reporting.


Explore is the old name for Watershed’s report creation tool, Report Builder (see below).


Some data that doesn't fit into xAPI's actor/verb/object pattern is stored in Extensions. Things like score, instructor name, and location can be stored in extensions.

Formal Learning Activity

Training given to a learner with a course in an LMS intended to improve professional performance.

Global Admin (User Role)

Global Admin users have full access to an organization's settings and can see every learner’s data. They can also add new users, set up and configure reports, and organize their company's structure.


Groups are collections of people and other groups. They provide a way to model organization hierarchies, group users by roles or locations, define permissions, and filter report data. Groups have some associated metadata like name and type. 

Group Hierarchy

Group Hierarchy is the representation of a company’s structure within Watershed. It can also be referred to as Organizational Hierarchy.

Group Type

Group Types allow you to define relationships between groups. Groups can be used for anything from representing hierarchies to defining learners' job roles to showing location of learners, so it's useful to define a Group Type for reporting and organization purposes. For instance, if you have groups for "Managers," "Directors," and "VPs," you make all of their Group Type be "Job Role."

Heatmap Report

The Heatmap Report provides an ideal way to quickly compare activity between learners. Like the Leaderboard Report, each Heatmap Report shows text-based data, but also presents a visual representation of your learners’ activities by using varying intensities of color. Darker and lighter backgrounds on cells are used to visually highlight outlier values. For instance, if you are looking at test scores for a group of learners, you can easily identify higher performers because their corresponding colors would be darker.

Hidden Reports

Global Admins can remove reports from a dashboard without deleting them by moving them to a special dashboard called Hidden Reports that is only visible to Global Admins. Alternatively, other dashboards can be used to archive reports. 

Interaction Statement

Watershed is powered by moments of activity called Interaction Statements. Sources ranging from mobile apps to learning management systems are connected to Watershed, and as learners perform actions in these programs, data about these actions is sent to Watershed in the form of interaction statements. Interaction Statements are also called xAPI statements.

Interactions Report

The Interactions Report collects interaction statements and displays them in a list.

Leaderboard Report

The Leaderboard Report allows you to rank people, activities, or activity types by score, usage, or any custom measure. For instance, use a Leaderboard Report to show a list of your most active users or most viewed pieces of content. This report type is good for exporting tables into a spreadsheet because it shows text-based data.


A Learner is a user of an organization’s learning system.

Learning Path

A Learning Path is a series of high level sequential milestones that learners are expected to pass through over the course of the program. These should be key milestones that all learners will complete and that are normally completed in a fixed order.

Likert Scale

A Likert Scale is a rating scale, often found on survey forms, that measures how people feel about something. It includes a series of questions that you ask people to answer and often comes with a neutral midpoint. Watershed's Activity Report can display Likert questions well.

Line Report

The Line Report displays learner performance on a line chart. Choose multiple measures and the Line Report will display values with colored lines. It’s ideal for viewing change in measure values over time.


Measures are ways of aggregating specific data points from what you collect. They are typically numbers that are displayed in Watershed’s graphs and charts, but sometimes they can output text in certain reports. Watershed’s report builder has a collection of default measures, and advanced users can create their own using our Measure Editor.

Measure Editor

The Measure Editor enables you to create and manage additional measures beyond the default ones that come with Watershed.

Other Data Sources

The Other Data Sources page provides access to Watershed’s Data Conversion Engine for data sources that do not support xAPI and for groups and people data. The Data Conversion Engine can be used to import data as CSV files and translate it into the appropriate format.


A persona is a single identity of a person, such as an email address or account on a system. All interaction data is associated with a single persona. Personas can be grouped together as a person, which associates all interaction data from each persona with that person.

Person Report

The Person Report allows you to create learner profiles for anyone in your organization. In addition to demographic information, you see a comprehensive overview of each learner’s activity—including information about course registrations, assessment performance, class attendance, and learning programs.

Pie Report

The Pie Report displays learner performance by showing how smaller parts represent proportions of a whole on a pie chart. Use it to track compliance, show what's most popular on your Learning Experience Platform, or see how people answer questions on an assessment.

Primary Email

A user's Primary Email is the email that they use to log into Watershed.


A Program is a collection of activities (like courses, classes, assessments, videos, etc.) that collectively define a specific goal. 

Program Report

The Program Report offers an overview of a pre-defined learning program—like compliance training or new hire training. Watch as your learners progress through courses, videos, assessments and keep up with high-level metrics like average assessment scores and competencies demonstrated. Answer common questions, such as who has or hasn’t completed parts of a learning program and share it with managers and leadership.

Quick Filters

Quick Filters allow your users to filter reports and dashboards without needing to access Report Builder. These filters, which aren't be saved, are perfect for providing limited filter control to users not familiar with Watershed.

Range Report

The Range Report visualizes change between measure values. It’s perfect to view change of performance measures (e.g., KPIs, competencies, or assessment scores) before and after training, and it can also be used to visualize learners’ engagement with video.

Report Builder

Report Builder is Watershed’s report creation tool. Use Report Builder to fill your dashboards with reports that help you understand and share your organization’s learning and training data. It provides a number of report and filter options that enable you to take a closer look at your data so you can find new insights and correlations you might not have discovered before.

Report View

The Report View shows a small summary view of the report on a dashboard. 

Scatter Report

The Scatter Report displays learner performance on a scatter plot. Choose two measures, and Watershed displays individual or group performance of those measures on an X and Y axes. It’s ideal for identifying high and low performers on measures such as KPIs, competencies, or assessment scores.

Spider Report

The Spider Report displays learner performance in a spider chart. Multiple performance measures (e.g., KPIs, competencies, or assessment scores) are plotted on the same scale. You can quickly compare how different individuals and groups are performing on the selected performance measures.

User (User Role)

The User Role User is the most basic User Role within Watershed and can see the fewest features and data. By default, User accounts can only see their own data. An Admin login could grant permission to a User login to see more data than their own. User logins can only change settings directly related to their own login.

User Role

A person's User Role controls which features and how much data a person can access in Watershed. This is also sometimes called known as User Type.

View Dashboards As

View Dashboards As functionality allows Admin users to view Watershed's dashboards as if they are other users within your organization. It's ideal to check if permissions are set up correctly.


xAPI is a specified way of transmitting data about learning interactions. Products that implement xAPI can more easily share learning records with other xAPI implementing products.

xAPI Data Source

An xAPI Data Source is any piece of software that can interact with an LRS using xAPI. Normally this includes sending xAPI Statements. Being an xAPI Data Source does not indicate how much and what data is sent or whether or not that data is useful.

Your Organization

The Your Organization page gives you a high level view of the people and groups that have been created in your account. From this page you can assign data permissions to Watershed users and control the order group types appear in your account.

Your Reports

Your Reports is a dashboard only you can see. Save and edit reports on this dashboard without changing Watershed for any other user. 


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