It is time to consider our next learning management system (LMS).

A number of factors let us know that the time is right. First, our current contract with Blackboard expires next summer. Also, learning management systems (other terms are sometimes used, like course management system or CMS) have evolved since we began using our current version of Blackboard, version 8. Blackboard itself has a newer and much nicer system. And other vendors have fresh products with differing capabilities.

It is time to assess our needs, decide on our next LMS, and begin the transition process.  Provost Jay Harper and CIO Dana German have indicated they would like a process that will allow us be in the new system (either an updated Blackboard or another vendor) by fall 2011.  To accomplish this goal, a committee of faculty, staff, and students has been appointed to:

  1. Write an RFP (request for proposals).
  2. Identify the top candidates to invite to campus for live demos with faculty, staff, and students.
  3. Gather input from the UMW community on which vendor products they prefer.
  4. Make  a recommendation to administration on the next LMS.

We are at step one, writing an RFP, and are seeking your input now and will be seeking your input throughout the process.