SCoPE: WebCT & Blackboard Merger: November 21-December 4, 2005

Ending This Seminar, but Continuing the Discussion in SCoPE

Ending This Seminar, but Continuing the Discussion in SCoPE

by Elizabeth Wallace -
Number of replies: 2

It?s the last day of our two week seminar. Thanks go to all the people who have contributed to our discussion, and have helped to illuminate the issues surrounding the WebCT/Blackboard event. Your thoughtful, informed postings have taken us beyond opinion on those two proprietary LMSs, into the world of Open Source and the pros and cons of Moodling at an institution-wide level.

We have just scratched the surface. However, we have raised our voices in concert with others, worldwide, who feel passionately about teaching and learning with technologies. As I wind up my moderator role, I?d like to direct you to the site maintained by Stephen Downes which has been recommended by Cindy Xin. She calls it a ?one stop source? and you can read commentaries by a Who?s Who of activists in the field. Their views will provide a wider perspective than we have been able to manage in our brief time together.

If you have final words for the people you have met in the seminar, please post them here in the next day or so. After that, our discussions will be archived on the SCoPE site and will be available as a resource, but no longer open for additional postings. I?d like to close by sending my thanks to the LIDC staff (Jason, Trevor, Danny and Ben, in particular) who keep SCoPE online and interactive, and to Sylvia Currie our remarkable SCoPE Co-ordinator who is already planning upcoming events. Keep watching for news from her.

But this is not the end of our discussion. At SFU, we are continuing to debate issues and consider our options, and you are all invited to join us in the SFU Special Interest Group (SIG) forum. More and more faculty and staff from SFU are contributing to SCoPE, and we value input from our international colleagues. Let?s engage in vigorous debate as future issues emerge.

In reply to Elizabeth Wallace

Re: Ending This Seminar, but Continuing the Discussion in SCoPE

by Dan O'Reilly -

Liz,

Thanks for contributing to and shepherding the discussion.  I personally discovered some very useful links and ideas.  There are many different perspectives on the merger; however, open source is the issue people are discussing not the merger.  This in and of itself is interesting.

I was just at a meeting with Geoff Peters, of British Open University, and he was asked why Moodle was selected as the platform they would use.  He noted that OU has not committed to any specific platform up to now; they have used some 'home grown' varieties of CMS/LMS.  Consequently, they did not have the associated retraining issues to consider with the decision.  As well, they have the resources in terms of IT personel to modify and change the platform to suit their needs.   He pointed out that many institutions would not have those resources.

Anyway, I guess, if anything, the merger has forced the open source question to the forefront. Nevertheless, in reading through the links and posts, I don't think that the open source question will be resolved or settled in the near future.

Dan

In reply to Elizabeth Wallace

Re: Ending This Seminar, but Continuing the Discussion in SCoPE

by Sylvia Currie -
Thank you everyone for all of your thoughtful contributions to this seminar. One thing for sure, we've moved far beyond feature comparison charts of the 90s when making decisions about learning mangement systems! A very important point that sticks with me is how to ensure we involve the right people in making decisions, and also what kinds of decisions we need to be making (one or the other? personal or institutional?) Okay, that's two points :-) And there were many more!

As Liz mentions, the choice of learning managements is very current topic at SFU, and further discussion will talk place in the SFU SIG for sure. While the name implies that the discussions there are of interest to SFU only, all are welcome! Thanks, Liz, for helping to ensure we do in fact involve everyone in these discussions!

We'll be taking a break from scheduled SCoPE seminars until January to allow the holidays to happen. As always, I'm anxious to hear from you on ideas for future seminar topics. Just message me here in SCoPE or send email.

Sylvia Currie
Community Coordinator
scurrie@sfu.ca