As the semester gets rolling, the integration of Blackboard Learn into the campus has begun. The 14 pilot faculty have been meeting monthly and the feedback has been good. This report will detail what the various committees have been accomplishing and what they plan to do in the coming months.
Scott Kodai, Manager, Distributed Learning Technologies and Classroom Technology Services, tells us that, “One month in, the Bb Learn pilot is going well. The Pilot Group faculty spoke at the recent CELT conference and were very enthusiastic about their experience with Learn so far. In DLT we are busy working on plans for the spring and our first full semester with Learn in production. We are analyzing our current system performance to help us determine how many servers we’ll need to support our full load. We’re tweaking and perfecting our integration and migration scripts, and planning for the release of service pack 8, which will include support for cross-listed courses and many other new features.”
From the TLP Empowerment Lab, Supervisor Peter DiFalco of the Bb Learn Migration Team reports that, “September was a big month for the Migration Team. After months of research and development by TLP student staff and application design by ATEC’s Web Services, the Migration Guide application was finished and became live for faculty who are moving courses from Vista to Bb Learn. Using the guide is one step in a simple five-step process to move courses which is now available to any faculty member who has taken the Transition to Learn workshop, right within Blackboard Learn. More than one dozen courses were migrated by faculty in consultation with TLP to test this process and to refine the information that helps faculty get their course ready for teaching.”
“As of October,” says Laura Sederberg, Manager of TLP, “we have had requests for Bb Learn Training from 16 departments across five colleges at Chico State. We have had inquiries from a couple of the GE Pathways Faculty Learning Communities as they plan their new offerings for next fall. That is a good start, but we have a long way to go to train all of Chico’s faculty before fall 2012. We recommend that you don’t wait until next summer to arrange a customized workshop for your department or group of faculty. To arrange for department training, contact Laura Sederberg, email@example.com, x4326. It requires a 90-minute block of time.
In the TLP Empowerment Lab, a poster production crew comprised of the Lab’s student employees working under the direction of Instructional Technology Consultant (ITC) Ann Steckel of the Bb Learn Communication Team, created a set of handmade posters for the Bb Learn Kick Off event that was displayed in Colusa Hall during the recent CELT Conference. The posters conveyed the virtues and capabilities of the Bb Learn learning management system (LMS) with the intent of encouraging faculty to become early adopters of the new LMS by signing up for one of the many “Transition to Bb Learn” training workshops led by lab ITCs that are being offered in the TLP Training lab in Meriam Library room 002, located in the library basement.
To plan when you can attend a workshop, visit the TLP homepage, www.csuchico.edu/tlp, for workshop dates and times and to register online. Faculty who have completed the workshop will be given a Bb Learn “prep area” into which they can migrate course materials from Vista courses and/or construct new content within the Bb Learn LMS environment.
~ article by TLP Student Staff Carey Wilson