New AXU Course: How to Use API
What is API?
The acronym API stands for Application Programming Interface. Simply put, API allows systems to communicate through the delivery of requests and return of output.
Automox educator Amelia Vacante offers API insight
At Automox University, our goal is to educate your customers quickly and efficiently enough to ensure their confidence on a myriad of topics – the latest of which involves API.
Here today to chat about the newest Automox University (AXU) course is the curriculum creator, Amelia Vacante. Read on and Amelia will walk you through the highlights of AXU’s newest course: API Components.
But before we get into the thick of it, let’s meet your host for this chat.
What’s your background? How did you come to Automox?
Amelia: I came to Automox from the realm of higher education, where – for the last seven years – much of my focus was on training design for academic technology.
I worked with several amazing people but was looking for a challenge and to merge some of my other skills into a new role. Since I have an educational background in cybersecurity and learning design, joining AXU and the amazing customer education team at Automox was a no-brainer.
Here’s what Amelia has to say about creating the most purposeful curriculum for Automox users.
What is Automox University?
Amelia: AXU is our go-to training ground for technical product courses. We built it to help our customers onboard and use the Automox product. AXU is hosted on Skilljar, which is a great learning management system (LMS) that’s easy to use and configure.
Amelia: Again, API stands for Application Programming Interface. The tool allows systems to communicate through the delivery of requests and return of output. Like many applications we use today that integrate useful information from other platforms, Automox is built upon RESTful API, which is an architectural structure that primarily communicates through HTTP requests. To be honest, I could go on all day about what API is at a granular level, but that’s precisely why it can be intimidating to learn about, at first.
What are the pillars of the API course curriculum?
Amelia: Now, there’s a lot of information out there about API and, at the end of the day, using it is highly subjective to the needs of the organization.
I wanted to make sure we adequately laid down a basic foundation, highlighted the most useful resources, and challenged our customers to think about ways they might leverage the API.
So, here’s how I broke it down:
1. Establish a balanced foundation in which customers can learn how the API works at Automox and gain the prerequisite skills needed to use it.
2. Highlight documentation such as the Automox Developer Portal and API Guide, which serves as an aid that customers can refer to after completing the course.
3. Make it relatable by providing use cases of how the AX API solves real-world problems.
Can you share with us what knowledge you hope users walk away with after taking the API course?
Amelia: I hope our customers walk away able to recognize the structure, scope, and capability of the Automox API. And I hope they’ll be able to identify some ways in which the API can help their organization.
Some common solutions the API provides are:
Spotlighting endpoints, users, and groups with great detail through custom reporting
Taking organizational policies further with automation for custom scheduling and deployment
Integration of the Automox API into an organization’s business intelligence platforms
What was your biggest hurdle in crafting the curriculum? How did you circumvent the challenge?
Amelia: Without a doubt, the biggest challenge was knowing where to start. Our customer base has a wide range of knowledge about the API. Some of our clients will find this course helpful, and some won’t need every lesson.
For that reason, I initially spent a lot of time analyzing our customer needs, pouring over our resources, and working collaboratively with our in-house experts. The time spent in analysis and seeking constant feedback was essential for building and sticking to a curriculum that lays a true foundation for future API courseware.
Do you foresee adding new concepts or next-level courses on API specifically?
Amelia: Absolutely. These courses are foundational because we understand that our customers have common goals they want to accomplish using the API.
The next course will likely focus on reporting, but we also look forward to hearing from our customers about what they want to learn about as well. We provide feedback surveys at the end of every AXU course, so please feel free to let us know what you’d like us to create next!
What’s your favorite feature covered in the API course?
Amelia: The Getting Started page might be my favorite feature because, frankly, it was the most challenging to build. Luckily, I was able to turn to my amazing colleagues for some much-needed insight and inspiration. At first, I had some difficulty finding the right words or tactics with which to introduce this learning path to our customers.
For instance, in any introductory course there’s the question of where do you start the learning? In this course, we begin with a high-level overview of what REST API is and then immediately dive into the benefits of the AX API, prerequisite skills needed, and useful tools.
Once users complete that section, I hope they feel empowered to learn more about the limitless possibilities of the Automox API at AXU, and beyond.
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