What is XLIFF? How does it help in online learning?

The XLIFF format may seem very complicated to those who are new to online learning. But it is the same format that allows for seamless translations. The XLIFF data format is based on XML and was developed to standardize the way data that needs localization is handled when localization tools are used. The XLIFF program has proven to be the most effective tool for transcribing eLearning courses since its release in 2002.

Using multi-language content for eLearning has many benefits. By developing and translating courses in languages other than your own, you will be able to meet both the academic and cultural needs of students in other countries. 

In this article, we will discuss what XLIFF is and how your eLearning courses can be translated using it. With that said, let’s get right to it.

XLIFF: what is it and how does it work?

Let’s take a moment to learn what this tool is all about before we address how it can help you translate online training courses.

XLIFF refers to XML Localization Interchange File Format. As mentioned previously, this format uses XML as the standard for exchanging data between tools when localization is performed. XLIFF tools will enable you to translate your eLearning courses into multiple languages quickly and easily. On top of that, it also addresses one of the deficiencies of authoring tools – the difficulty of translation.

An XLIFF tool allows you to create your eLearning course in one language, which forms the basis of an XLIFF tool. The next thing is to turn the course materials into XLIFF files and send them directly to a translation tool that supports XLIFF. After that, you need to import the translated file back into the slot of your choice. Validation is the last step prior to publication. Here, the document needs to be checked to ensure that it has been formatted and translated correctly.

Translation of eLearning courses with XLIFF: how does it work?

Now, let’s see what XLIFF can do for you as you translate your eLearning content into various languages.

Designing your eLearning course in your primary language

You must create courses in your main language before you can use the XLIFF tool to translate them. To begin, you must design your eLearning course in the language you use as your primary language. A good authoring tool is a way to go. However, you can download the course in .xliff format if you already have an eLearning course created in your primary language.

Using XLIFF, export the course

The next step is to export your course content into an XLIFF format after creating it in your main language. To do that, you can use several different authoring tools. Your translator needs to receive the exported .xliff file (normally in Zip format) once it has been successfully exported into an XLIFF file.

Translating your eLearning course

Essentially, this is where you have to work; translating your online course. To translate the course into XLIFF, you must first export it into a .xliff zip file and then roll it over to your XLIFF-compatible translator. It is also possible to contact an expert if you do not have the right tool for translating the file. You will be able to translate the eLearning course easily with the tools.

Translate, review, and publish the file

After you translate the course into multiple languages based on your needs, you can import the course file back into your system. By this time, your translation is complete. However, you need to validate your course before you publish it for learners around the world to access. During that process, we will review and ensure that the translation is accurate.

Furthermore, translating eLearning content won’t suffice for creating multi-language eLearning materials. In addition to it, make sure that the content is also adjusted according to the cultural and academic preferences of the learners across different regions. You can proceed with publishing the content once everything is in order.


Learning has always been an essential part of the working process. And due to COVID’s impact on our professional as well as personal lives. The need for learning has increased in every workspace. By using workforce development software, you can overcome all these learning challenges. But you also have to think of remote workers working from different locations that belong to different cultures. By using multilingual content you not only give them the added benefit but also provide your company to grow more globally.

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