MyUniven

Centre for Teaching and Learning
MyUniven is getting an upgrade from Blackboard to Moodle

We are excited to share the news of an update on MyUniven, our University Learning Management System.
Over the next few months, our relevant teams will be working on the migration of our Learning Management System from Blackboard to Moodle based Digikamva LMS. Our goal is to complete the migration by the 25th of July this year.

What this means
While the migration will mean a few changes, along with a new look and feel, our appointed Change Management team will guide all stakeholders through the process. All stakeholders involved will receive the appropriate training to ensure all are comfortable with using the upgraded MyUniven. Please keep your eyes and ears open for communication in your personal inboxes relating to your preparation and training.

Questions and answers
To ensure we keep everyone informed, we will be launching a landing page, https://www.univen.ac.za/myuniven/, that will guide you through each phase of the MyUniven project. Here we will also list frequently asked questions with answers. In the meantime, please feel free to reach out to us at lmsmigration@univen.ac.za

CHETL-ELearning Team in collaboration with ICT

 

Migration FAQ: For Schools, Teaching Staff and Learning Administrators

UNIVEN LMS Migration

Frequently Asked Questions

If you would like to have a question added to this bank, please submit it to lmsmigration@univen.ac.za

What has promoted the move to a new LMS system?

The Blackboard LMS was introduced to the UNIVEN community in 2014. This was after a consideration was made concerning issues such as ICT Support, UNIVEN ICT infrastructure and general teaching technology readiness of the institution at that time. After so many years a review has been made about the indicated aspects including affordability and taking into consideration the increasing need to modernise to meet growing and diverse needs of a modern University. After a serious consideration, benchmarking and taking into consideration UNIVEN’s uniqueness and its diverse community, the considerable growth of support structures in the form of CHETL E-Learning, Teaching and Learning, ICT infrastructure and other support services, Moodle was found to be the appropriate LMS going into the future.  

What is the new LMS system?

The Digikamva Moodle LMS is an open source learning platform designed to provide University Teachers, administrators, and students with a single robust, secure and integrated system to enable enhanced digital learning environments and knowledge development online.

Moodle is built by the Moodle Project, which is led and coordinated by Moodle HQ, which is financially supported by a network of over 80 Moodle Partner service companies worldwide.

Moodle is the most widely used LMS globally and that includes a number of significant local and other African universities as its users.

Where do I access and login to the new LMS?

The Digikamva Moodle LMS will be available at the following URL:

The URL will be made known before

To login to the system please use your regular UNIVEN login credentials

For students

Sigle sign-on will be used where students will use their UNIVEN given account to login at UNIVEN computers such as those in labs

For staff

Sigle sign-on will be used where staff will use their UNIVEN given account to login at UNIVEN computers such as those in labs

It is planned that this will be in effect from the 1st day of October 2020, Single-Sign-On will be implemented where staff and students will use the same credentials to access Moodle as they use in the UNIVEN network.

Where can I get help when using the Digikamva Moodle LMS

For personalised and specific support please contact UNIVEN E-Learning who can respond to your help request

Moodle Migration general enquiries:  lmsmigration@univen.ac.za

Moodle support for staff:           staffLmsSupport@univen.ac.za

Moodle support for students: studentLmsSupport@univen.ac.za

The Moodle LMS support website also has comprehensive help guides, videos and other support artefacts you can search and refer to when seeking help:

Teaching with Moodle: https://docs.moodle.org/38/en/Main_page

How long will it take to transition my courses from Blackboard to Moodle?

Full Moodle usage will begin from 01 October 2020 but UNIVEN will continue to license Blackboard Learn until end of December 2020.  From 01 October 2020 until December 2020 it will be a staggered and systematic Blackboard phasing out period. UNIVEN E-Learning and the LMS Migration Project team are finalising a list of prioritised courses that will be migrated based on a set criterion. All other courses will be recreated in the new LMS at a point in future. Please look out for communication from the UNIVEN eLearning team in this respect.

What kind of supports is in place to help schools make this transition?

Lecturers training and new LMS orientation is being scheduled and you will be contacted about an available workshop in due course. Certain courses and their teaching facilitators are being prioritised however, so if you do not receive a training date by the end of June you will be placed in a new training programme that will run from the beginning of October 2020.

How soon can I begin using the new Moodle to teach my courses?

The official UNIVEN Moodle LMS teaching environment is not currently available to teaching staff but will be opened for training incrementally before mid-July until the last day of September 2020. From 01 October 2020 the Moodle LMS will be available to all teaching staff. UNIVEN E-Learning will keep you posted via Email as the situation develops.

I have a lot of teaching/classes to get though and need to get access to Moodle as soon as possible so that my students learning can continue. How can I get earlier access and begin teaching?

There are a several hundred priority courses that are being migrated from Blackboard to the new Digikamva Moodle LMS. These lecturers are in the process of being notified of the procedure. If you have not received a notification in this respect, please direct an email to UNIVEN E-Learning so that they are aware of your needs and can prioritise your training and access onto the new LMS. Please note that during the time of the transition to the new LMS, the E-Learning team may have limited capability to fully support your course but will do their best. If you wish to start early teaching with your Moodle course environment you are welcome to do so, but you may have to wait  in terms of support due to the fact that the UNIVEN E-Learning helpdesk can only provide limited assistance until late September 2020 or early October at the earliest where the final move from Blackboard to the new Digikamva Moodle LMS is to take place.

Will Teaching staff still have access to Blackboard course material/records after July 2020

Yes. Blackboard access will cease for all users by December 2020, UNIVEN E-Learning will have backups and restorable archives of all course work. These courses can be restored for you if required. Please note, however, that the digital course migration programme team may have already identified your course/s for migration.

It is important to note that teaching staff are advised not to teach courses with Blackboard Learn after 01 October 2020 but to start teaching with Digikamva Moodle LMS.

Can a Blackboard course be imported directly into a Moodle shell?

Yes. Moodle does have an import utility that will allow you to take a course shell exported from Blackboard and import it into Moodle. However, certain course structures import more effectively than others and, in some cases, it may be better to rebuild the course to better align it with Moodle’s more systematic approach. Some tools and artefacts transition better than others. For instance, test banks, exams, grade columns, and course files all transition with no difficulty, however advanced adaptive release rules do not. The LMS migration project and UNIVEN  E-Learning teams are currently only migrating specific courses so please look out for communication from them in this regard.

Does it make more sense to rebuild my old Blackboard course from scratch in Moodle?

This depends entirely upon the way you originally structured your course in Blackboard. Based on the digital courses audit that was carried out on all UNIVEN Blackboard courses, most were deemed to be easy to rebuild in Moodle from scratch. Only those selected for specific migration will be moved. If you need assistance in rebuilding your courses, please get in touch with the UNIVEN E-Learning team who will prioritise your selection for Moodle Instructor Training shortly or at a later time

How are Moodle and Blackboard different?

Feature for feature and tool for tool, there are no major differences between Moodle and Blackboard. While Blackboard may have advantages in some areas, Moodle has those in other areas. The main point to remember is that, in the right hands and with sufficient technical and application training, the LMS platform as a tool can be used for effective digital teaching and learning.

Where Moodle and Blackboard do differ however is in their ownership. Moodle is open source, freely available software, used by hundreds of universities, colleges and service providers worldwide. The Digikamva Moodle LMS is supported and hosted in the cloud by Digikamva though Microsoft Azure in South Africa. 

Blackboard is proprietary and owned by a private business who controls its development and all its sales and distribution activities.

Both platforms closely track LMS innovation and development trends worldwide and can be found in wide use both in South Africa and around the world.

Another major advantage with Moodle, is its easier application and deployment with established cloud technologies and providers. This enables UNIVEN to be much more resource efficient and to direct resources previously required to pay for Blackboard services to greater amounts of LMS support, training, and development for lecturers.

Will the third-party application/system/solution I use in Blackboard also work in Moodle?

UNIVEN ICT and E-Learning is working with the Service Provider and the third-party applications systems to migrate their systems to Moodle as part of the technical migration programme where possible.  UNIVEN E-Learning will have to take these particular kinds of 3rd party systems on a case-by-case basis, though and cannot guarantee every Blackboard plug-in will work in Moodle. For instance, one plug-in that will definitely not work is Safe-Assign.

If you are concerned about any specific tools you have been using for your courses, please get in touch with UNIVEN E-Learning so that they are aware of the issue and can provide a response as soon as possible.