Canvas to Replace Blackboard as UO’s Learning Management System (LMS)

Bb to CanvasThe University of Oregon Libraries is pleased to announce that the UO LMS Task Force has selected Canvas by Instructure as the university’s new enterprise Learning Management System (LMS). Following a transition period, Canvas will replace Blackboard, the UO’s current LMS. Both Blackboard and Canvas will be fully supported throughout this transition period. We anticipate that Canvas will be available for live courses beginning Spring quarter 2015.

The selection of Canvas LMS follows an extensive, campus-wide evaluation process. Canvas received overwhelmingly favorable assessment from thousands of UO students and dozens of faculty, GTFs, and staff who reviewed, evaluated, and pilot tested a number of LMS platforms.

Extensive pilot testing indicates that Canvas will save faculty, GTFs, and students time and enhance student engagement that may lead to improved learning outcomes. Faculty, GTFs, and student pilot testers awarded Canvas very high ratings for its friendly and easy-to-learn user interface, grade book feature, e-mail communications and notifications system, overall navigation structure, and speed grader functionality. Canvas also provides a free mobile interface.

Migration Information

As implementation and transition details become available, they will be posted to

If you have any questions or suggestions about the LMS transition, please contact the UO Libraries at

Spring Pilot Update – May 2014

The initiative to review Blackboard and other Learning Management Systems (LMS) as part of a formal procurement process continues to move forward. Following extensive testing of five LMSs this winter, the task force has selected two platforms for further testing spring term: Canvas and Sakai. These two platforms are being tested in 24 credit courses from across the curriculum. We are gathering feedback from nearly 2,000 students, 24 faculty, 38 GTFs, and library and IT staff through user surveys, usability studies, and focus groups.

All five platforms (Blackboard, Canvas, Desire2Learn, Oba and Sakai) are still under consideration.

The Task Force will reconvene in late June, after spring term grades are submitted and assessment data are analyzed. Based on the Task Force recommendation, we will conduct further assessment for technical feasibility, ease of integrations with systems like Banner, etc., policy implications. We will also conduct off-list reference checks with comparable institutions. The Task Force anticipates making a final recommendation by fall, if not earlier.

Special thanks to our spring term faculty colleagues and students who are pilot testing.


Update to the UO Senate, May 13, 2014:


Faculty volunteers needed for LMS pilot usability sessions

The LMS review team is seeking UO faculty to participate in one hour, one-on-one usability sessions using the two spring term pilot learning management systems – Canvas and Sakai. These individual sessions will be scheduled during the weeks of April 7th-18th at the faculty member’s convenience.

This is a great opportunity for faculty to not only test out each system but also share their thoughts and concerns about adopting a new, or keeping the current, LMS. Please consider participating in the process. We need your feedback!

To sign up for a session, please contact Kirstin Hierholzer at

Thanks for supporting the LMS review process.

Gearing up for spring term pilot

The LMS review team is currently working with faculty pilot volunteers to create their spring term courses in either Canvas or Sakai. Faculty will pilot these platforms throughout the term and provide feedback to the LMS team via surveys and focus groups.

Students enrolled in the pilot courses will also be asked to provide feedback about their experiences using the systems.

If you’d like to learn more about the spring term pilot participants, check out the list of faculty volunteers and the courses they will teach.

We’ll also be conducting usability studies with UO instructors new to both pilot platforms. If you’re a UO instructor and interested in providing feedback on the two systems, please contact Kirstin Hierholzer at These usability sessions will be scheduled early to mid-April.

Help & Training Resources – Spring Pilot

Based on the feedback from UO faculty and technical staff, the LMS Review Task Force has identified two platforms to test during courses spring term, 2014: Canvas and Sakai.

Please note: All platforms, including Blackboard, ObaVerse, Desire to Learn, Canvas and Sakai are still under consideration until a final decision is made.

Winter Pilot Testing has Begun

The LMS Task Force has selected the following vendors for a series of pilots during winter and spring 2014.

  • Blackboard
  • Desire2Learn
  • Canvas by Instructure
  • Oba by University of Oregon
  • Sakai by Longsight

Thank you! We have received an overwhelmingly number of faculty, GTFs and technical support staff interested in helping with the selection. Dozens of faculty, GTFs and technical support staff will be testing all five systems during Winter term 2014. During Spring term 2014, live pilot testing will be extended to faculty and students in courses.

Faculty Volunteer Opportunities for Winter & Spring Pilots

Dear Colleagues,

As you know, the campus is in the process of selecting a new learning management system.  Our current version of Blackboard has been in place for several years, and the market now offers newer alternatives that we can consider, including a different version of Blackboard.

The process began last spring with focused interviews with faculty.   We also invited different vendors to campus for open presentations on their products.  This fall, we issued a formal “Request for Proposals,”  and the review committee is now in the process of evaluating those.  We hope to limit the selection down to a 2-3 finalists.  Those products will be testing in classroom settings winter and spring terms.

The final selection will happen at the end of spring term.  We will take a full year for implementation and training.   Our current Blackboard license has been extended to cover us through the entire process.

It is important to have this process be faculty-driven.   Several faculty are on the review committee.  If you are interested in testing out one of the finalists in a course, please sign up for the pilot. Your participation is greatly appreciated.  If you would like a member of the committee to attend a departmental meeting to discuss the process and get your feedback we would be happy to do that as well.

Deb Carver,
Review Task Force Chair

Request for Proposals Posted (closes 11/15/13)

RFP for Learning Management System (LMS)

This opportunity closes on 11/15/2013 at 05:00pm

The University of Oregon is conducting a formal procurement for a Learning Management System (LMS) that is in use currently and is successfully meeting the needs of the medium-to-large academic research university market. For details, please see the documents at the link below. The RFP is posted at

Solicitation Number PCS # 250000-0011-RFP