Canvas is College’s future, SOCS sticking around until 2013

College chooses Instructure Canvas over Moodlerooms Joule and rSmart (Canvas.instructure.com).

The College has set up a tentative schedule for phasing out SOCS as the school’s official learning management system (LMS), according to Ryan Gladysiewicz, assistant director of Instructional Technology Services.

Instructure Canvas is slotted to take over for SOCS, though the College has not yet finalized a contract with the company.

SOCS will remain as the official LMS for this academic year, but Canvas is expected to take over by fall 2013.

SOCS will continue to be around during the transition period, though. In the meantime, some students may encounter the new system.

“There are plans to run pilots of Instructure Canvas in fall 2012 and spring 2013, so it is possible that students may be in a pilot course and use Instructure Canvas instead of SOCS for their course work,” Gladysiewicz said.

Canvas, the LMS, is provided by Instructure, an outside service that was formed in 2008 with the mission of creating a “powerful platform that easily integrates content and communication from everywhere,” according to its website.

The search for a replacement program began with the formation of the Learning Management System Investigation Committee on Nov. 15, 2010, according to the committee’s timeline.

The goal was to come up with four candidates to act as potential replacements by fall 2011. By spring 2012, Instructure Canvas, Moodlerooms Joule and rSmart Sakai were included in user testing groups as potential successors for SOCS.

Currently, according to Gladysiewicz, any changes that students notice in the SOCS program itself are the result of routine maintenance, which will not feature any major alterations during this transition period.

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