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Western Illinois U Chooses Hosted Desire2Learn

Western Illinois University is finalizing its shift to Desire2Learn from Blackboard WebCT software to run Western Online, its distance learning system. The system is used by students both on and off campus. Courses offered in summer 2012 were the first ones converted, followed by those offered in fall 2012 and spring 2013. The institution's Center for Innovation in Teaching and Research has been handling the course migration work.

According to a board of trustees document, the university made its final selection in mid-2011 and is spending $1.2 million for a five-year contract with Desire2Learn, which will host the service. The evaluation process began as its former learning management system reached end-of-life. The other finalists included Blackboard and Instructure.

"Providing a variety of options allows individuals who may not have previously had access to higher education opportunities to participate according to their schedules," said Richard Carter, executive director for the School of Distance Learning, International Studies, and Outreach. "Desire2Learn Learning Suite has the features we need to support online learning. It's incredibly easy for students to use and it provides our faculty with advanced tools and functionality to improve their courses."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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