Transition to Canvas - 2013-2014
During academic year 2013-2014, Highline will be transitioning from the Angel Learning Management System to Instructure's Canvas. This site will be the home of faculty support for the system, and for the transition.
What's the schedule?
The transition schedule is:
- Summer 2013 - Systems integrations, transition testing
- October 2013: Faculty get access to Highline's system, Continued system integration, first orientation classes. Faculty can begin transitioning courses.
- Winter 2014 – First students on Canvas, Pilots, faculty can transition courses
- Spring 2014 – Continued transition: Some faculty in Angel, some in Canvas
- Summer 2014 – Angel available for backup, not available for students
What should I do now?
Between now and Fall Quarter 2013, you can:
- Check out Canvas (see info below)
- Have you wanted to make some changes to your courses? Restructure how you present materials on Angel? Implement Quality Matters? Begin working on your ideas. ( E-mail Us to discuss your ideas!)
During Fall 2013, we'll begin offering training, transition support, and access to Highline's Canvas system.
Updated: check out the FAQ!
As you may be aware, the Blackboard company bought Angel Learning Systems in 2009. Blackboard has indicated that version 8.0 of Angel, released Fall 2011, will be the last major upgrade to Angel. While they expect to provide maintenance, they have stated that they are focusing on the BbLearn product for development.
Our experience to date has been that Angel is not keeping up with updated browsers and the growth in use of smartphones and tablets effectively. Our license expires in October 2014, and will not be renewed.
During early 2012, the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges and the state-funded 4-year instituions participated in a competitive RFP to search for a successor to Angel. Instructure's Canvas was the winning product from that process.
Since then, an overwhelming majority of our peer institutions have either migrated, or announced plans to migrate, to Canvas. This includes colleges where many of our students and part-time faculty also study and work: Green River, Bellevue, all Seattle District schools, Tacoma, and Pierce. In addition, Eastern Washington U, UW (all campuses) and Seattle U are moving to Canvas; Central and Western are piloting.
Adopting the same system as other local institutions eases the transition between colleges for students and part-time instructors, supports collaboration with our peer institutions, and enables us to take advantage of shared training and support resources.
What's Canvas Like?
In a lot of ways, Canvas is like any other LMS: there's a place to post documents, have online discussions, give quizzes, etc. It separates itself from the market through:
- Stronger Mobile tools
- Ability to attach to other tools (e.g. Google docs, Facebook, etc.)
- Real-time data about student activities (Analytics)
Canvas has received positive reviews for the interface and for responsiveness to clients.
The Highline faculty who tested felt that Canvas' tools were a bit limited/limiting, and our Instructional Resources staff felt the company had some growing up to do. In conversation with other colleges, we believe some of these limitations have been fixed, and we're more comfortable with the maturity of the company.
Learn More About Canvas
- Home Page
- Communication Preferences
- Drag and Drop file management
- Mobile/iOS (Android released 1/2013)
- The 3-minute Canvas Course