The Iowa Community College Online Consortium (ICCOC), of which Southwestern Community College is a member, recently adopted Canvas by Instructure as its new Learning Management System (LMS).  

A Learning Management System is an online learning platform for teaching and learning.  Prior to this switch, the ICCOC utilized Pearson Learning Studio as its platform.  A pilot will begin in the spring of 2017 and Canvas will be fully deployed by fall 2017.

The ICCOC is comprised of seven Iowa community colleges—Eastern Iowa Community College, Iowa Lakes Community College, North Iowa Area Community College, Northwest Iowa Community College, Southeastern Community College, Southwestern Community College, and Western Iowa Tech Community College—who work cooperatively to offer quality online education.  The consortium, formed in 1999, first utilized eCollege, prior to Pearson Learning Studio, to offer their online, hybrid and eCompanion courses.   

During summer 2015, the ICCOC began a search for a modern LMS that would provide greater usability and functionality for its faculty and students.  Several companies were considered and faculty and staff were encouraged to participate in the selection process. They were invited to review the two final companies and provide feedback via a survey. Canvas was selected as the preferred supplier by the ICCOC Oversight Committee. They considered Canvas to be a cutting-edge, interactive, online learning platform that integrates well with existing e-learning tools and will meet the needs of the ICCOC.

Canvas will provide students with device-friendly software that improves teaching and learning. It allows students to work how they choose, where they choose and when they choose. Canvas will be used for fully online instruction as well as hybrid and face-to-face courses.

Theresa Umscheid, acting director for the ICCOC, has been an essential part of the LMS selection process.  

“The move to Canvas is an important part of the ICCOC’s plan to enhance the online learning experience by providing our staff and students with a flexible, modern tool to support student success,” stated Umscheid.