Blackboard Competitor Pilot Program Halfway Complete


Kim Mishkind professor of the management and marketing department participates in canvas training session of Friday September 6, 2019. Photo by Mari Woomansee/The Runner

Angie Saavedra, Reporter

  Beginning in Spring 2019, CSU Bakersfield Information Technology Services has been conducting its first ever pilot of Canvas. According to CSUB’s online news center, “The Canvas pilot will last for two terms: Spring 2019 and Fall 2019. After the second pilot, the campus will decide to move to Canvas or stay with Blackboard.” This semester starts the second term of the Canvas pilot program. Blackboard and Canvas are online class management tools used by both professors and students.

  CSUB’s Office of the Provost stated that there is no firm decision made yet and they would be making a decision in the spring. Few students are aware of Canvas, currently being tested as a possible replacement for Blackboard. Diana Garcia, a biology major, asked “What’s Canvas? I wasn’t aware of CSUB having a new program that might replace Blackboard.” When shown the Canvas app, Garcia said, “Canvas seems to be more efficient, much simpler than Blackboard. Everything that you could possibly need is located on the site instead of having to jump from site to site. Perhaps all professors should be required to use Canvas instead of Blackboard for the remaining time of the trial.”

  English major Hana Ayoub said, “I like that I have the option to set my notification preferences for due dates and course content and everything. I think it’s a little redundant to use Blackboard and Canvas, but I understand [since] it’s a new trial and error thing. I also think that the calendar on [Canvas] is great once you get it setup with your outlook and events you can [add]. I believe [Canvas] is a good platform to combine everything that a student would need through CSUB, as opposed to multiple websites and links where things can be found.” Ayoub also mentioned that she wouldn’t have known about the website if she wasn’t asked about it, since CSUB has not sent her any emails or notifications about the new launch.