Blogs as course management systems

Tim over at Assorted Stuff has a post about his upcoming presentation at NECC on using blogs as course management systems.  Tim shares his experience with his district’s IT department:

Actually, truth be told, they want nothing to do with open source projects of any kind (and certainly not any CMS that isn’t named Blackboard).

Or, for that matter, with any of the growing collection of open collaborative and networking tools out there on the read/write web (Google Docs being another sore point around here).

All of them are resources over which they cannot exercise complete and total control.

This is something I have played around with and feel pretty strongly about myself.   I think that teaching in a more open environment is good for me as an educator and for my students. It isn’t a popular idea at my institution, any more than it is in Tim’s district.  That does not, however, make it a bad idea.

So if this is how I feel, why do I have my summer course set up and one of my fall courses started on Blackboard?  Because it’s easy.  I can try to justify it by saying that I was trying to learn to use Blackboard, but that wouldn’t be totally honest.  It is just easier in some ways.  And harder in others, too.

For a variety of reasons most of my fall course shells are not accessible to me right now.  So I don’t have them started, much less set up.  So I have a chance to redeem myself, to do something I really believe in.

Now let’s see if I do it.


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