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Current Pilot

Pomona began to pilot Canvas at the start of Summer 2022. A small cohort of faculty members worked closely with RITG to transform their Sakai courses into the Canvas platform for Fall 2022 delivery. Following this successful initial phase, a larger group of users participated in a Spring 2023 Canvas pilot and then a comprehensive evaluation was completed on the first year of Canvas implementation. The feedback gathered has provided us to gain valuable information on the experience of Pomona faculty and students, test the Canvas environment, and build ITS capacity. In this way, Pomona College will be poised for a possible Sakai-to-Canvas consortium transition.

Beginning Fall 2023 the second year of the Canvas pilot begins. All Pomona courses will be available in Canvas. We look forward to updating the Pomona community with developments. 

Faculty Cohort 1 for Fall Semester 2022

  1. Paul Cahill (Romance Languages & Literatures)
  2. Feng Xiao (Asian Languages & Literatures)
  3. April Mayes (History)
  4. Jo Hardin (Mathematics and Statistics)

Faculty DIYers for Fall Semester 2022

  1. Kerianne Wilson (Biology)
  2. Penny Sinanoglou (History)
  3. Chanchal Dadlani (Art History)
  4. Mara Lofrano (Psychological Science)
  5. Dwight Anderson Williams II (Math)
  6. Oscar Marquez (Chicana/o Latina/o Studies)
  7. Omer Shah (Anthropology)
  8. Preston McBride (History)
  9. Lily Bartenstein (Theatre)
  10. Jun Lang (Asian Languages and Literatures)
  11. Nicolette Rohr (History)
  12. Joshua Tasoff (Economics)

New Faculty Pilots for Spring Semester 2023

The following faculty have joined the Canvas pilot this semester:

  1. Monica French (Theatre)
  2. Richard Lewis (Neuroscience)
  3. Samantha Zacarias (Neuroscience – Laboratory Coordinator)
  4. Barb Catlin (Music)
  5. Tomás Summers Sandoval (Chicanx-Latinx Studies)
  6. Aidyn Osgood (Gender & Women’s Studies)
  7. Erin Runions (Religious Studies)

Evaluation Results

Rough Timeline

  • Summer 2022 = prepping for pilot
  • Fall Semester 2022 = pilot cohort 1 implementation
  • Spring Semester 2023 = pilot cohort 2 implementation, continue with pilot cohort 1
  • Summer 2023 = evaluation, reflection and prepping for full scale implementation
  • Fall 2023 = year two of pilot begins

Why a Canvas Pilot 

In the early 2000s, The Claremont Colleges deployed a variety of Learning Management Systems (LMS) solutions–Moodle at Pomona College, WebCT at Claremont McKenna College, and Sakai at Harvey Mudd College. Sometime around 2005 or 2006, the Consortium standardized on one LMS, Sakai, and it has been in use continually by most of the Consortium since then. However, over the past six years, several schools, Claremont Graduate University, Keck Graduate Institute, and significantly, the first undergraduate school, Scripps College, moved to Canvas. Given the value of consortial collaboration and supporting cross-registration, Claremont Consortium faculty and administrative governing bodies, have been interested in returning the Consortium to a single LMS platform in order to provide a common teaching and learning environment for our students and faculty. This Pomona College pilot will allow us to continue supporting and capturing the Sakai experience while we also explore the technological and pedagogical implications of a Canvas implementation. Together with our faculty, instructors, students, administrators, and staff, we can explore costs and benefits of a potential move to Canvas and a return to a common LMS experience. 

The decision to move from Sakai to Canvas does not rest with ITS, but the possibility that the Consortium might move to Canvas suggested that we, in ITS, would be prudent to conduct this pilot. There are some good things about Canvas, including…

  1. It has a simple, modern, user-friendly interface.
  2. It’s built on cloud-native architecture, enabling scalability and reliability.
  3. It offers an extensive list of third-party integrations.
  4. It provides a wide range of built-in features to support teaching and learning needs.
  5. It delivers data analytics and reporting to help gain insights into student learning.

Please see our current list of Canvas FAQs to learn more.