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Provost Accepts LMS Task Force Recommendation

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The Learning Management System (LMS) Review Task Force presented their formal recommendation to Provost Pallavicini who accepted and endorsed their selection of Canvas by Instructure as the LMS moving forward at the University of the Pacific.

Why the LMS Review? 
This Task Force was convened because our current LMS system, Sakai, does not adequately support the changing digital and technological needs of students and faculty.  These needs included requirements for an LMS that is reliable, mobile-friendly, cloud-based, personalized, customizable, intuitive to use with a modern interface, and able to integrate with University systems designed to enhance student learning.  A review of the LMS was necessary to ensure that Pacific students and faculty have a student-centered LMS that is foundational to accomplishing our Pacific 2020 Goal 1.3 to "Embrace new technologies, innovative learning models, and a vibrant culture of intellectual inquiry to serve the new generation of learners."

The Provost convened the (LMS) Review Task Force  in December 2014.  A diverse group of over 100 University stakeholders, including faculty, students, and staff, identified LMS requirements and built evaluation criteria for three general areas:  User Features, Administrative Tools, and Technical Requirements. After extensive hands-on evaluation all stakeholder groups overwhelmingly favored Canvas and scored it highest in all three areas.  The Task Force unanimously approved the recommendation of Canvas as Pacific's new LMS on March 2, 2015.

Next Steps for LMS Roll-out 
The Provost will convene an LMS Implementation and Timeline Planning Task Force to create a detailed plan for the successful implementation and adoption of Canvas and a smooth transition from Sakai.  Sakai will still be fully supported and available through Summer 2016 and in archived format thereafter. After Summer 2016, the University will provide support only for Canvas which will be integrated with grade submission and student success. Even after full implementation of Canvas course elements will be maintained in archived status in Sakai for potential future use in Canvas.  The transition to Canvas will include full training opportunities in the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) and 24/7 access to professional Canvas support teams.  Those faculty members interested in rapid adoption of Canvas should contact the CTL.  Look forward to announcements for "Canvas Camp" training opportunities at the CTL as well.

Initial plans include training sessions to begin sometime during May 2015, with course migration from Sakai completed as faculty desire thereafter. Course migration can be as hands-on or -off as faculty wish; faculty members may build their course from scratch in Canvas, request CTL and Instructional Design Services (IDS) to manage the course migration and build-out for them, or any level of support in between. 

For detailed LMS Review Task Force information, documentation, and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the upcoming transition, please visit the LMS Review site  . Please direct questions and inquiries to the Task Force Chair, Vice Provost Vernon Smith at