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Slow and Steady Wins the Race: Moving from Commercial to Open Source. Ryan Allen, Senior E-Learning Specialist University of Dayton. Session Outline. Rolling Out Sakai Where We Came From Analyzing Our Options Sakai Roll-out Training Sustaining and Future Growth Data Collection

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slow and steady wins the race moving from commercial to open source

Slow and Steady Wins the Race:Moving from Commercial to Open Source

Ryan Allen, Senior E-Learning Specialist

University of Dayton

session outline
Session Outline

Rolling Out Sakai

  • Where We Came From
  • Analyzing Our Options
  • Sakai Roll-out
  • Training

Sustaining and Future Growth

  • Data Collection
  • Development Process
  • Overcoming Issues
  • Tips
university of dayton
University of Dayton
  • Private University founded in 1850
  • Founded by the Society of Mary

(Marianist)

  • ≈7,000 Undergrad / 4,000 Grad Students
  • Top 10 Catholic University in the nation
  • Faculty are not shy about asking for help
  • No real Instructional Designers
  • Advanced to second round of NCAA Basketball Tournament last year
where we came from
Where We Came From
  • UD adopted WebCT Campus Edition 4.1 as its LMS in 2003
  • About 1800-2000 courses on WebCT each year
  • Primarily used for:
    • Submitting Assignments · Online Assessments
    • Accessing Readings · Discussion Forums
    • Posting/Reviewing Grades
  • E-Learning’s primary customers are campus faculty
    • Provide training, support, and instructional design assistance
slide5

LMS Usage

2003-present

The E‐Learning Lab prepares approximately 300 faculty to deliver 500-700 web‐assisted and distance learning courses each semester.
slide6

“WebCT has been a reliable product but as our needs expand and instructional technology develops, a new LMS that better fits the needs and identity of the UD Community must be sought out.”

The Crossroads

webct satisfaction survey results
WebCT Satisfaction Survey Results

…a large majority of faculty noted that:

  • WebCT was not user-friendly
  • Among others, the Mail and Gradebook tools were consistently mentioned as weak points
  • Many tools such as the Quiz and Assignment tools had steep learning curves
  • The product was becoming outdated and didn’t embrace newer technologies
  • More support and training materials were necessary

Despite the overall positive results and the fact that over 90% of the responders said they would recommend WebCT to a colleague…

the hunt
The Hunt
  • LMS Evaluation Process: 2006-2007
  • LMS Advisory Panel Assembled
  • The panel reviewed resources compiled by the E-Learning Lab:
    • WebCT Usage Reports
    • WebCT Satisfaction Survey Results
    • ePortfolio Experience with Sakai
  • 3 migration paths
  • Sakai unanimously chosen

http://learn.udayton.edu/isidore

sakai 1 0 eportfolios
Sakai 1.0 - ePortfolios
  • OSP Tools piloted during 2007-2008 school year
  • Course level portfolios
  • Some other Sakai tools in sites

Ultimately, lots of work down the tubes 

the big questions
The Big Questions
  • What’s the real cost of Open Source?
  • Do we have the current staff to support an Open Source LMS?
  • Is there commercial support available?
  • Can we meet the high expectations of the faculty and students?
  • Are we up to the task?
answering questions 1 2
Answering Questions #1 & #2
  • What’s the real cost of Open Source?
    • Hardware
    • Time / Lots of Effort
    • Ultimately, it depends on what we want
  • Do we have the current staff to support an Open Source LMS?
    • No. We needed another

developer for starters.

from sakai to isidore
From Sakai to Isidore

St. Isidore of Seville

Patron saint of students and schoolchildren and recently recommended for patronage of computers and the Internet

answering question 3
Answering Question #3
  • Is there commercial support available?

Did we need it? Could we have success without it?

tool review process
Tool Review Process
  • All core tools reviewed
  • Slow roll-out with limited number of tools
    • manage expectations and maintain better support.
  • 11 of 15 core chosen tools for the initial Fall release
  • 3 additional tools for the Winter release
  • The Form
slide26

240 Bug Fixes and Improvements Already Made

  • 70 more planned for fall 2009 release

How We Keep Track of Progress and Needs?

vi migrating from webct
VI. Migrating from WebCT
  • Create Automated Migration Utility
  • Start Fresh or E-Learning Lab Migration
    • Began late Spring 2009
    • Utilized Georgia Tech Migration Tools
    • Online Migration Request Form Created
    • Faculty were emailed the courses for which they were instructors in as a reminder
communicating with campus
Communicating with Campus

Blanket (Non-Threatening) Marketing

where is isidore now
Where is Isidore now?

Fall 2008

18 ‘Pioneer’ Instructors teaching 22 courses

  • User Group Meetings
  • Student Surveys
  • Spring 2009
  • 110 Instructors teaching 300 sections
    • ‘Tuesdays with Isidore’ sessions

Summer 2009

≈ 50 Instructors teaching 140section

slide39

LMS Usage

2003-present

The E‐Learning Lab has trained nearly 200 faculty members in hands-on Isidore sessions since last August.

41% Isidore

3% Isidore

64% Isidore

training
Training
  • 2 Hour ‘Mastering Isidore’ Sessions
    • 2 Trainers Per Session
  • Specific Tool Training
  • Departmental Planning
  • Customized Training Material & Isidore Help File
  • Isidore ‘Tip’ Emails
    • Students/Instructors
answering question 4
Answering Question #4

4. Can we meet the high expectations of the students and faculty?

the student perspective what the students are saying
The Student PerspectiveWhat the Students are Saying

I Love

It Baby!

how do we decide what to develop
How do we decide what to ‘develop’?
  • E-Learning Lab Guided
    • Trainer Feedback
    • Developer Suggestions
  • Faculty Feedback/Requests
    • Phone Calls
    • Emails

Still working towards firm solution

what does it mean to develop in sakai
What does it mean to develop in Sakai?

User Interface

30%*

HTML, JSP/JSF, JavaScript

Business Logic

60%*

Java

Data Access

10%*

Reads/Writes via Java (Hibernate)

* - % of time spent by developers

developing isidore
Developing Isidore
  • Proposed annual development cycle

Coding

Summer

Public Release

Beta Release

Fall

Spring

work in progress1
Work in Progress
  • Continuous Improvements and Tool Additions
  • Speed Issues
    • ‘Data Heavy’ tools (Forums/Gradebook/T&Q)
  • WebCT Course Migration
  • Open Source = More Man Hours

(and sometimes more headaches)

  • Changing the campus mentality
tips for success
Tips for Success
  • Deal with Comparisons Head On
  • Remind users ‘Why’
  • ‘Hold Hands’
  • Dealing with the ‘Squeaking Wheels’
    • Believe the symptom, not the explanation
    • Be ‘Unapologetically Helpful’
  • Get everyone ‘in on the act’
answering the big question
Answering The Big Question
  • Are We Up to the Task?

Yes. Stay Focused!

isidore team
Isidore Team

Training and Support

  • Ryan Allen – Senior E-Learning Specialist (allenryf@notes.udayton.edu)
  • Leah Bergman – E-Learning Specialist (bergmalb@notes.udayton.edu)
  • Jerry Timbrook– E-Learning GA (timbroje@notes.udayton.edu )

Development

  • Paul Dagnall– Web Developer (dagnalpb@notes.udayton.edu)
  • Matt Mize – Systems Administrator (mizematr@notes.udayton.edu)
isidore help and resources
Isidore Help and Resources

Isidore Server – http://isidore.udayton.edu

E-Learning Website – http://learn.udayton.edu/isidore

  • Training Movies
  • Downloadable documentation and tool FAQs
  • Quick Start Guides and Introduction Video for Users
  • Training Calendar
  • WebCT Course Migration Request Form