Dear Fellow Faculty and Learning Enthusiasts,
As you have seen elsewhere, UC Davis has chosen a new Learning Management System to replace SmartSite: Canvas!
I will let the following announcement by UC Davis Provost Ralph Hexter speak for itself. We look forward to the conversations about this exciting new set of tools.
I am pleased to announce that UC Davis has chosen Canvas by Instructure as our new learning management system (LMS). UC Davis Canvas will be available starting fall term 2016. It replaces SmartSite, which will remain available until spring 2017.
Large research universities with profiles comparable to ours already use and trust Canvas. It is regarded as dependable, rich with features, and intuitive. It can be integrated with campus systems and data sources, as well as with relevant third-party applications. And crucially, it has demonstrated that it can meet UC Davis’s high-level requirements in terms of usability, reliability, accessibility, security, learning tool integration, mobile use, and frequency of updates.
We selected Canvas following an extensive and inclusive vetting process. The goals of this process were, first, to understand what UC Davis requires from a learning management system as we build our future, and, second, to examine the available LMS options. We secured the participation of campus experts in accessibility, security, and other technical areas in order to make sure that Canvas meets our standards. I thank the Learning Management System (LMS) Transition Working Group for their sustained and comprehensive work on this initiative. I thank also André Knoesen, chair of the Academic Senate, for enlisting a broadly representative group of Senate faculty to review the report of the Working Group, offer feedback, and make a final recommendation. This was a true cross-campus collaboration, with extensive voluntary participation, and representation from administration/staff, students, and especially our faculty.
As I have said, SmartSite will remain available beyond the initial rollout of Canvas in fall 2016 through spring 2017. This large window should make it convenient for all individuals to move to the new LMS prior to the disappearance of SmartSite. The campus will spend the first part of 2016 preparing for the fall rollout of UC Davis Canvas.
Information and Educational Technology has posted details about the transition — including a timeline, FAQ, and resources for assistance — at: http://movetocanvas.ucdavis.edu
Provost & Executive Vice Chancellor
University of California, Davis
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616