Is the CSULPS Taskforce choosing one LMS for the entire CSU?
No. Campuses will make their own choice on their Learning Management System along with all the integrated and connected teaching and learning tools in their LPS ecosystem. The point of the Taskforce is similar to “Consumer Reports.” The Taskforce will shape the RFP to include CSU requirements and information gathering needed for any Enterprise Learning Management System. An evaluation of the systems will be performed to ensure security, accessibility, standards, integration, company viability, etc. The RFP will also include data gathering on trending LMS/LPS needs such as Analytics, Programmatic and Institutional Assessment, ePortfolios, etc. The RFP is meant to facilitate campus discussions, information gathering, implementation, best practices, migration strategies if needed, training, knowledge sharing, demonstrations, and whatever might enhance each campus’ opportunity to choose the LMS that fits their culture and environment. The RFP leads to negotiating master enabling agreements (MEAs) with the vendors that multiple campuses are interested in licensing, leveraging the scale of the CSU for the benefit of everyone.
What is an RFP? And why do we have to do it?
A Request For Proposals (RFP) is an early step in the procurement process that ensures a fair, open, and competitive bidding process for vendors interested in supplying services or products to the Cal State system. It is a legal requirement for large purchases. It provides the necessary and optional requirements for the product or service as well as other features that may be preferable in a final product. For example, meeting accessibility standards and maintaining data security are both critical for any proposal submitted by a vendor. These and other requirements (determined by the Taskforce) will be listed in the RFP.
What’s part of the Learning Management System (LMS)? How is that separate from the Learning Platforms and Services (LPS)?
The Learning Management System performs the basic administrative functions for managing a class including sharing files, facilitating discussion and announcements, grading, and assessments. As an enterprise level system, the LMS must do this securely and robustly considering the tens of thousands of simultaneous users. While the LMS forms the core system, a broad and growing ecosystem of “add ons” exist to add or augment specific functionality which may not exist in the LMS or may only be needed by particular academic disciplines or institutions. We refer to these as Learning Platforms and Services (LPS). (See below)
What are Learning Platforms and Services (LPS)?
Learning Platforms and Services (LPS) are the numerous external connections to the primary Learning Management System (LMS) that can enhance or augment learning, but are not part of the core functionality of an enterprise level LMS. The diagram below shows many of the features, software, or other interactions that form LPS.
Do all campuses have to participate in the CSU RFP on the Learning Platforms and Services?
Not necessarily. Currently ten CSU campuses run Moodle (only 1 hosted). Eleven CSU campuses run Blackboard Learn (6 are hosted). One with BrightSpace and one with Canvas. Due to the CSU Blackboard contract ending June 2017, those campuses using Blackboard will want to participate to ensure continuity and/or make a change of their teaching and learning platform. Moodle campuses may or may not choose to participate. If multiple campuses were interested in the same LMS vendor product, this leans toward negotiating an economy of scale and a CSU Master Enabling Agreement (MEA) enabling campuses to procure together at a reduced price rather than purchasing alone.
I can’t make it to any of the live events. How can I get the information?
Each of the live events will be recorded and available for review anytime at CSULPS.com. A short edited version with highlights will also be available for review.
I have a specific concern about the LMS at my campus. Who should I tell?
The CSULPS Taskforce is charged with ensuring that there are options available to the campuses. You should work through your campus leadership responsible for the LMSystem. The Taskforce would welcome hearing your concerns when looking at various products and systems. You can use the contact form or email firstname.lastname@example.org.