Redefining the Classroom

Title III Strengthening Institution Grant

Strategies: Learning Management System (LMS)

A number of faculty members use a learning management system to enhance student learning. This system provides convenient access to class resources, lecture notes, quizzes, student discussion groups and journals and other learning activities. Many universities have realized major cost savings by moving from proprietary platforms to open-source LMS systems. In response to HLC recommendations as well as the economic benefit, LSSU is investigating that path as well. This move represents a strategic opportunity to improve instructional efficiency and put us on a more sound financial footing.

As we look at LMS opportunities to fit our needs at LSSU, some recent studies and information may provide useful insights.

This past September, edSurge published some predictions on "What's in Store for the $8 Billion LMS Market?" (Wan, 2014).   Data and information was included from the following sources:

In September 2014, the EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research published its study "The Current Ecosystem of Learning Management Systems in Higher Education: Student, Faculty, and IT Perspectives." Findings from this study include:

  • current market shares for LMS companies;
  • typical LMS use and underutilization;
  • user satisfaction with LMS features and functionality;
  • user satisfaction with current LMS training opportunities;
  • the LMS learning curve; and Mobile access demands. 

The EDUCAUSE study reports that the most frequently requested upgrades among faculty and students include improved mobile functionality and interfaces that are easy to navigate.

EDUTECHNICA published its 2014 LMS Usage Data for higher education institutions in the U.S. with full time enrollments above 800.  The data includes: LMS market shares as related to the size of institutions (FTE), trends in market share shifts, and a wider view of more global LMS market shares.  According to this report, smaller institutions are more likely to use a non-traditional LMS or Moodle, as shown below:

Source: Edutechnica. (Sept. 23, 2014). "LMS Data - The First Year Update." http://edutechnica.com/2014/09/23/lms-data-the-first-year-update/

Please refer to the documents below to learn more about the Title III proposal to transition to the Moodle open-source LMS:

MoodleOverview_1

LMS_CostsComparisons

LMS_TransitionPlan_SupportPlan

Moodle_SummativeReport_PilotFindings

If you would like to try out Moodle's features for yourself as a teacher or as a student, Moodle has created a site to make that easy for you to do. You can practice and test-drive anything you'd like in this demonstration course. The site resets completely at the top of each hour, so you can start again from scratch every hour if you'd like. Just click on the link below and login as instructed, and you can find out just how easy Moodle is to use:

Moodle Practice Site: Try it out in any role!