The countdown is on for UWindsor instructors to transition from CLEW, the institution’s current learning management system, to Blackboard Learn, a system that will enhance the University’s capacity to offer engaging, high-quality online and blended teaching and learning.
The first wave of the changeover will happen on Tuesday, September 8, for the faculties of Law, Human Kinetics, Education, Nursing, and the Odette School of Business. Remaining faculties will make the change by the end of December.
“We are asking instructors to plan well ahead of the deadline so they are familiar with the new tools and are comfortable using them in their classrooms,” says Erika Kustra, Director of Teaching and Learning Development in the Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL).
Dr. Kustra says the new system is among the most popular learning systems in the world and brings state-of-the-art technology to teaching. Such functions as Retention Centre; plagiarism detection tools; lesson building options; enhanced assessment and interactivity, will eventually only be available through Blackboard Learn, though CLEW content will be maintained until September 2017 to allow for appeals, sabbaticals, and similar circumstances.
Kustra says CTL is offering a number of online, classroom, and individual training sessions on an ongoing basis so instructors can make a seamless transition.
Tim Brunet, Pathways Specialist and Coordinator for the Liberal Arts and Professional Studies program, is pleased with the move to Blackboard Learn and the support he received from CTL. He recommends professors allow themselves between six and 10 hours of instruction time, as well as a minimum of two weeks to engage with Blackboard’s many tools.
“Upgrading to Blackboard is important and brings the University of Windsor in full stride with the most advanced online teaching system in the world,” Brunet says.
Kustra says Blackboard has customizable options to support varied teaching styles and enables instructors to connect and engage with students through wikis, blogs, rich video, audio, text chatting, and discussion board options using desktops, laptops, tablets, and smart phones. As well, she says that Blackboard offers more options for providing student feedback and easier, integrated grading, with group friendly features for interactive learning.
“Our goal in CTL is to help our instructors feel supported during this time of transition. We are encouraging everyone to choose a Blackboard Learning training method that works best for them – whether it’s online, classroom, or face-to-face – and get an early start.”
For details on various workshops visit: