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Progress in the transition to Canvas

The following message was sent to the university community on August 28, 2019.

Members of the Rutgers Community:

As the fall semester gets underway, we would like to provide you with an update on the transition to Canvas as the university’s official learning management system (LMS). The 2019-2020 academic year is expected to see significant progress in moving your courses to Canvas:

Blackboard and Sakai
The Canvas project team is currently working with select academic units to schedule Blackboard and Sakai migration pilots beginning in Spring 2020. These pilots will provide a better understanding of the specific requirements, technical gaps, resource needs, and timing for moving your courses to Canvas. Upon completion, the project team will determine a schedule that works with academic units based on size, available resources, and other specific requirements. You may continue to use Blackboard and Sakai until your unit has been scheduled to move to Canvas.

Moodle
Moodle migrations are nearing completion, with courses currently being migrated for the Spring 2020 semester. Instructors may use Moodle for the Fall 2019 semester.

Project sites
Sakai, Blackboard, and Moodle have often been used for collaborating on projects. Users may continue to use those existing systems for project sites until alternative solutions are identified and made available.

Next steps
To ensure a cohesive learning experience for Rutgers students, the Canvas project team is requesting that instructors wait to move their courses. Communication surrounding the timing of when your courses will be moved will come directly from your unit leadership once a plan is developed. This will allow for more efficiency, provide support for instructors, and limit the number of students who will be asked to utilize multiple systems in a given semester. You may continue to use your current system until your unit has been scheduled to move to Canvas.

Additional updates
A number of other key steps have been taken over the past six months in our efforts to enhance the teaching and learning experience for Rutgers students and faculty by moving to Canvas:

  • An Executive Steering Committee and related working groups have been formed to provide oversight and guidance for the transition, and to ensure broad representation from across the university.
  • Rutgers became a member of Unizin, a leading nonprofit higher education consortium devoted to creating common standards for learning technologies.
  • revamped Canvas website was launched, devoted exclusively to Canvas documentation, resources, and support for the Rutgers community.
  • Additional progress has been made on the technical side of the project including the ability for instructors to submit their grades directly from Canvas, having a standard process for creating courses sites in Canvas, and archiving course and student data from Blackboard, Sakai, and Moodle for a minimum of five years.

Resources for faculty and staff
For more information regarding the Canvas transition, including steering committee minutes, working group summaries, updates, and FAQs, please visit: https://canvas.rutgers.edu/transition/

For questions and concerns about moving to Canvas, please contact your local support contact:

  • Rutgers University–Newark: atshelp@newark.rutgers.edu
  • Rutgers University–Camden: idt@camden.rutgers.edu
  • Rutgers University–New Brunswick and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences: tlt@docs.rutgers.edu or your local instructional support group

You may also email gocanvas@rutgers.edu with general inquiries.

Best regards,

Barbara A. Lee
Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

Michele Norin
Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer

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