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CMS Review for Wednesday, November 19, 2003.

Wed., Nov. 19, 2003




Sponsored By: Respondus
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CMS Viewpoint

CMS: The Bottom Line is a Dotted Line

Stephen R. Acker, Ohio State University
Lanny Arvan, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Kathy Christoph, University of Wisconsin at Madison

Collectively, the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (the Big 10 universities and The University of Chicago) confer, on average, 15% of all Ph.D. degrees awarded annually, employ more than 33,000 full-time faculty members, and enroll nearly one-half million undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Implicitly and explicitly, the consortium thinks “size matters.” Yet the October TechForum in Madison, Wisconsin reminded us that the faces of these schools is reflected one student at a time, and these individual voices argue for—or against—the considerable investments each of us makes in course management systems and the technical and human infrastructure that supports them.

The University of Wisconsin at Madison’s Chancellor John Wiley closed his welcoming remarks at this year's annual CIC meeting with a cautionary comparison: “The median family income in the state of Wisconsin is $45,000. The median family income of the 2003 incoming freshman at UW Madison was $90,000.”He spoke in the context of ten years of declining state subsidy to Wisconsin public institutions and Congressman Buck McKeon’s legislation to tie federal aid programs to graduation rates and other metrics of accountability.

Steve Acker ([email protected]) is director of Learning Technologies Research and Innovation and associate professor of communication at the Ohio State University.

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Sponsored By: Syllabus
Tablet PCs for Campus Mobility
Find out how Tablet PCs can be used on campus for collaboration and ad-hoc networking. A special advertising section sponsored by Motion Computing explains the features, applications and versatility provided by portable computing devices.

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CMS News & Product updates

Jenzabar Unveils Total Campus Management Solution

Jenzabar, Inc., is positioning itself as a “Total Campus Management” solution provider, an omnibus source for colleges and universities facing budget shortfalls, incompatible software systems, and rising service delivery expectations. Dubbing it a “technology strategy and management philosophy,” the company said TCM incorporates the company's i3 strategy of Integration, Intelligence and Internet-accessible software and services, combined with advisory consulting. Jenzabar's offerings include Web-based enterprise software with student, institutional advancement, human resources, and financial applications.

In a testimonial, Park University IT director Sara Freeman said the TCM package provides universities with multiple departments “the flexibility and scalability built into their (Jenzabar) systems.” Park has 40 different campus locations, Freeman said, a level of interdependence that requires “a working partnership with a company that understands the uniqueness of our institution and the complexities involved.”

eCollege Names President, Chief Operating Officer

eCollege promoted Doug Kelsall, it executive vice president and chief financial officer (CFO), to the position of president and chief operating officer (COO). As president and COO, Kelsall will continue to oversee eCollege's product engineering and technology functions, as well as its eLearning Division, and the Enrollment Services Division formed with the recent acquisition of Datamark, Inc.

Oakleigh Thorne will continue to serve as chairman and CEO. His reports will include Kelsall, a new CFO and an executive focused on corporate strategy.. Kelsall will serve as interim CFO, and he and Mr. Thorne will divide responsibilities until the CFO position is filled. "eCollege has moved from being a single-division operating company to a multi-divisional one, and to ensure that we continue to hit on all cylinders, it's critical that someone be focused on managing all day-to-day operating activities," said Thorne.

SCT Releases Third Generation Luminis Content Management

SCT announced the latest version of its Luminis Content Management Suite 3.0 for enterprise-class Web content management in higher education. General availability is currently scheduled for spring 2004.

The company said the release incorporates its experience working with over 40 customers to enable the software “to create, manage, deliver, and maintain timely and relevant Web content.” SCT also vows that the suite is much easier for non-Web experts to work with. Features planned for the new release include an improved user interface; enhanced templating system, in-context editing, site management, and Macintosh support.

“We want our Web presence to convey that we are a well-respected, public research university that prepares students to be leaders in the 21st century,” said David Ullman, CIO of the New Jersey Institute of Technology, a SCT campus. “To accomplish this, we needed to halt the organic, disconnected growth of thousands of Web pages, tap more information sources, have more efficient processes, and personalize the online experience for each user WebCT Pushes Marketshare in Higher Education Consortia.

WebCT Pushes Marketshare in Higher Education Consortia

WebCT bolstered its position in the market for eLearning platforms in higher education consortia by signing the Swiss Virtual Campus and the Appalachian College Association. SCT now boasts 30 consortia and state systems as customers, including its bluest chip customer, the California State University systems. SCT said its Vista solution is designed with such large organizations in mind, enabling them to support multiple campuses and constituents from a central location but allowing the schools to develop their own “graphical identity.”

The Appalachian College Association is a consortium of 34 private liberal arts colleges and serves 37,000 students in Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Eleven institutions will deploy WebCT Vista over the next two years, with more to follow.

The Swiss Virtual Campus is a government program to offer eLearning capabilities to all Swiss colleges and universities. It plans to offer a large number of courses initially covering medicine, humanities, technology, sciences, management, mathematics, economics and law.

Berklee College of Music Launches Open Music Courseware

The Berklee College of Music launched Berklee Shares, a program to provide free music lessons and to encourage musicians to share and distribute their music lessons online. Berklee is making the lessons available at no charge; they are made up of a growing catalog of MP3s, QuickTime movies and PDF files derived from curriculum developed at the college by its faculty.

In making the announcement, the college compared the program to MIT’s Open Courseware Initiative ( which makes course materials such as curriculum outlines, notes and syllabi available for free for the asking. Berklee said it their open courseware program is “designed to create an open exchange of ideas for musicians everywhere as well as evangelize the Internet as a means to gain unprecedented access to quality education. Berklee believes that digital distribution networks will have a significant impact on the future of music and music education.”

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Corrections: Blackboard Unveils Integrated CMS, ePortfolio System

[The story on Blackboard’s CMS, ePorfolio system in the Wednesday, Nov. 12, CMS Review was incorrect. Below is the correct story.]

Blackboard Inc. unveiled its education-specific learning content management and ePortfolio system–the Blackboard Content System–which it said would lower the costs and increase the simplicity of managing learning content, digital assets and ePortfolios in an enterprise learning environment. The new system includes enhanced features in four areas: learning content management, ePortfolios, Virtual Hard Drives, and Library Digital Asset Management.

Syllabus Radio: Selecting a CMS

Kathy Christoph explains how the University of Wisconsin selected a new course management system, through an in-depth study of campus requirements and user input, and a rigorous evaluation of potential CMS vendors.

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CMS Case Study

University of Texas: Thinking About Buy Versus Build

Two years ago, UT President Larry Faulkner called on the university to use technologies to serve its customers better and to reduce costs by increasing efficiencies. In working to deliver that vision, the university wanted to create a portal and course management system that would enable every class taught at the University to have its own Web site.

Two years later, the Blackboard CMS is ingrained in campus, with over 30,000 students connected to over 1,500 classes. While the initial implementation was not without its bumps, over 80 percent of the faculty reported being ‘very satisfied’ with their pilot experiences. Now the university is working with Blackboard 6.

This case study, by David Cook of UT’s IT department, tells the story of their decision to go with a commercial CMS, their decision to choose the Blackboard system, and what went right – and wrong – along the way.

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Sponsored By: ES Webinar
Webinar: How to Leverage Storage Virtualization Technology - Dec. 4, 11am PT
Learn how you can leverage storage virtualization technology to reduce your storage complexity and costs, and improve your data and application availability and storage utilization. Attend this IBM sponsored educational event with industry author and commentator Marc Farley. Register today!

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CMS TechNotes

Caveat Emptor: Institutional Readiness Inventory Tool

A project of EDUCAUSE’s National Learning Infrastructure Initiative, the READiness InventorY (READY) system is a decision engine developed to help higher education institutions determine their organizational, cultural, financial, and philosophical readiness to expand their use of technology for instructional and administrative purposes. It is structured as a series of self-assessment questions that will lead users to descriptive conclusions and resources for further analysis, including glossaries, Web sites, and links to effective practices.

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Sponsored By: Syllabus
Penn State President to Speak at Syllabus fall2003
Graham Spanier, Ph.D., president of Penn State University, will deliver a keynote at Syllabus fall2003, to be held December 8-10 in Cambridge, Mass. Dr. Spanier will offer his perspective of technology integration at a major research and teaching university along with his views on using IT to create a more student-centered environment. Join your colleagues to explore five tracks aligned with key campus technology issues.

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