Monday, July 23

Changing Course Management Systems (CMS): Lessons Learned

Link to article (By Kathy A. Smart and Katrina A. Meyer)
"Converting a Blackboard course to Desire2Learn taught us some of the hazards and benefits of changing course management systems...

Lessons learned from this exploratory study:
  • Institutions and systems seeking to save money by consolidating with one CMS need to factor in the time and effort of faculty who will need to review, correct, and revise content once the course has been converted. Since this preliminary examination revealed half of the course might not convert to the new CMS, the decision by institutional leaders to move to a new CMS represents a real cost to the faculty member, department, and college.
  • Institutions and systems need to investigate and evaluate the conversion tools of potential CMS products.
  • CMS providers need to improve and market their ability to convert material from one CMS to their own product, since this could well be an important selling point to institutions already invested in a particular product.
  • These considerations also may apply to the new, emerging world of free or open source CMS products.
  • Despite the work of fixing partially converted courses, faculty were not averse to trying a new product, and they felt students would be willing to change too.

Faculty may not be the brakes to change that some make them out to be, but they are legitimately concerned about the time and effort needed to make the transition a success for their courses and students."

A very useful and relevant article ! It includes some very interesting statistics and findings, which could surely benefit (or act as a guide to) any University facing the prospect of migrating to another CMS.

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