FAQs about the migration

Why Canvas? Why Now?

Having nearly all of Penn’s programs using the same LMS will provide Penn students, especially those in cross-school programs or taking courses outside their home school, a more integrated set of technologies to manage their courses.

Why not Blackboard?

Over the past year, the Penn Libraries conducted a pilot test of Canvas. The majority of instructors involved found that Canvas met or exceeded their needs and offered better teaching tools than Blackboard. Based on the pilot, and the positive experience of faculty in Wharton and GSE who are currently using Canvas, the Council of Deans and the Provost agreed that a campus-wide adoption would be beneficial for Penn faculty and students.

What is the timeline for the transition?

The transition to Canvas will be a year-long process. At the end of the process
Blackboard will no longer be available. Libraries’ and school-based support staff will be on hand to help you save and reuse your Blackboard course content.

When will Canvas be available?

Canvas will be available for the Fall 2013 term. Instructors who wish to use Canvas for a course should contact the Penn Libraries at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.

What kind of support will be available?

The Libraries, in conjunction with staff in individual schools, will offer workshops and a range of services including providing assistance with developing course sites in Canvas, migrating existing content from Blackboard, and learning all that Canvas has to offer. A schedule of workshops will be available on the Libraries’ website.

More information about using Canvas is available at http://www.canvas.upenn.edu/about

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