From: General Student E-Memo (memofrom@Colorado.EDU)
Date: Tue Feb 22 2011 - 04:18:58 MST
Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2011 04:18:58 -0700 (MST) From: General Student E-Memo <memofrom@Colorado.EDU> Subject: CU-Boulder Moving to Desire2Learn for Online Learning Management System
TO: All Boulder Campus Students
FROM: Office of the Associate Vice Chancellor for IT and Chief Information Officer
SENDER: Larry Levine
SUBJECT: CU-Boulder Moving to Desire2Learn for Online Learning Management System
From a server under a desk years ago to a new, versatile learning management system, CU-Boulder is moving into a fresh era of online learning. As early as this summer, faculty will be able to experience an enhanced web-based learning management system with the pilot launch of the next generation of CULearn, Desire2Learn (D2L).
A significant upgrade from CULearn (powered by Blackboard), Desire2Learn was consistently rated as more intuitive and flexible than our current system and the offerings of competing vendors, by our faculty, staff and student evaluation committee. Desire2Learn will provide powerful new features ranging from live audio and video conferencing, and audio recording capability to the integration of social networking with blogging and bookmark capabilities, as well as enhance the functions that CULearn provides today.
"Faculty who have been experimenting with social networks for improved student engagement in CU courses will be pleased with Desire2Learn; it was designed from the ground up for current modes of communication and information sharing," said Diane Sieber, professor and director of the Herbst Humanities program in the College of Engineering. "Desire2Learn will allow me to extend the conversation beyond the classroom, coordinate collaborative projects, and go mobile with many student assignments."
Cindy Donahue, director of Disability Services at CU-Boulder, is pleased with the fact that D2L is supportive of assistive technologies. Their product "has even won awards," she said. "That's one of the many reasons that D2L was selected by our evaluation team."
The Division of Continuing Education and Professional Studies is on board for the move. "The flexibility and ease of use of Desire2Learn will allow continuing education to shift the focus from the mechanics of building courses and allow us to spend more time developing innovative content and developing quality courses," said Debra Warren, academic technology consultant for the division. "As our program continues to grow, Desire2Learn's easy-to-use tools, such as the Dropbox tool, Discussions tool, and Grades tool, will support our growth while allowing us to develop courses that will fit the needs of our instructors and students."
"I'm especially excited about the data-mining and analytics possibilities, as well as the rubric system and the flexibility of assigning roles and permissions," said continuing education's Director of Independent Learning, Geoffrey Rubinstein. "I think D2L will make it significantly easier to deliver high quality courses and enhance faculty presence and interaction."
The project currently anticipates making a pilot version of Desire2Learn available for faculty over the summer. Faculty will be able to add new fall 2011 courses to Desire2Learn over the summer, and will also be able to migrate existing CULearn course content to the new service. For fall 2011, both Desire2Learn and CULearn will be available for faculty to use with students, although the campus will encourage use of the new system.
"The campus has requested new features and functionality and this new system moves us forward in meeting those needs," said James Trevey, student member of the selection committee. "Students are eager to experiment with e-portfolio and social networking tools to enhance their learning experience at CU-Boulder."
Beginning in 2008, CU-Boulder embarked on an in-depth process to understand the university's needs, then plan and select the engine and vendor that would power the campus' next-generation of CULearn. Desire2Learn was chosen after a detailed selection process, including the feedback of faculty, staff and students.
For more information about this process, visit the project website at: http://www.colorado.edu/its/culearn/culearnnextgen.html.
Stay in Touch With the Project
This project is in its early stages. More communications will be sent regarding training, resources and support closer to the pilot launch date. Updates regarding the status of this project will be posted on the ITS website at http://www.colorado.edu/its.
If you have any questions, please contact the IT Service Center at 303-735-4357 (or 5-HELP from an on-campus phone) or email@example.com. Phone help is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
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