Following extensive consultation with students and staff, the Flexible Learning team can now reveal which CLE (central learning environment) system has been chosen to replace Blackboard Learn in 2025.
How did we choose a supplier?
During the summer, over 260 students and staff completed usability testing on three systems: Canvas by Instructure, Blackboard Learn Ultra, and Brightspace. Testers were selected from a cross-section of teams, and with a broad range of differing needs and expectations, in order to fully test the accessibility and user experience of each system.
Since then, our CLE Evaluation Panel have been analysing the responses, alongside other data and criteria about each system’s ability to deliver across a number of key requirements. We’re delighted to share that the system which most meets the University’s requirements is Canvas by Instructure.
Instructure have been informed that they have successfully won the contract, and we will now begin a ‘discovery phase’ – where, over the next three months, we will work with them to configure the system to our needs in a way that works for students, staff and the University as a whole.
We will ensure the feedback generated to date, including data from the usability testing phase, will inform the transition to Canvas – and will also continue to work closely and collaborate with students and staff from across the University.
As we move towards this transition, we will also ensure that our current system, Blackboard Learn, continues to deliver the best teaching and learning experience possible. As such, we will provide any necessary updates to Blackboard Learn, and information on these will be shared with students where appropriate.
If you haven’t already, please do sign up to our mailing list for all the latest updates on the project, as well as information on future engagement opportunities.
A huge thank you to everyone who has been involved in the process so far – student engagement has been paramount in helping us identify a product which works for all.
If you have any immediate questions, please contact us at FlexibleLearning@manchester.ac.uk.