Tuesday, September 18, 2007

LMS Evaluation Team Volunteers Needed

Interested SCC Nominees Need to Volunteer for the Learning Management System Evaluation Team.

Over 450 Sacramento City course sections with over 14,200 student enrollments use the Blackboard Academic System in support of online, hybrid and web-enhanced classes - currently, 109 online sections have 4100+ enrollments.

Every computing system should have periodic review with consideration for growth or alternative approaches. The Los Rios District has begun the evaluation of Blackboard and other alternative LMS options. This detailed review is motivated by dissatisfaction from some of our experienced faculty teaching online and hybrid courses and student frustration.

The LMS Evaluation Team, assisted by District Office Information Technology staff, will work through October and November. At this time, meetings are planned on Fridays with additional time required to complete the evaluation tasks. Participating faculty will need to make a commitment to evaluate all options and attend all meetings.

The evaluation team will recommend renewal of the Blackboard Academic System contract or select an alternative LMS product. Part of the evaluation is to consider how current course content will be copied to a new system and if publisher content will be available. The final report and recommendation from this team will be forwarded to the district-wide Educational Technology Committee and then to Chancellor Harris for action.

Yes, this is a fast-track project and an important opportunity for you to actively influence the next Los Rios learning management system.

Faculty who do not serve on the LMS Evaluation Team will have opportunities to view demonstration course sites for each product and to submit feedback to the team.

Interested faculty should contact Linda Stroh as an SCC nominee. The list of nominees from all four colleges will be reviewed and appointments made in consultation with campus Academic Senate Presidents.

Partial list of Learning Management Systems for review include the following (links are to the product descriptions): Blackboard, ANGEL, Desire2Learn, Sakai and Moodle.

Watch for the SCC LMS Features Survey to distinguish between courses requiring LMS features and courses that want to deliver content online.

(Announcement previewed by the SCC Academic Senate on September 18, 2007 and SCC Information Technology Committee on September 14, 2007)

-- Melissa Green Instructional Development Coordinator
-- Jory Hadsell, Distance Education Coordinator