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Elevating your leadership | “I don’t care that they stole my idea…I care that they don’t have any of their own.” – Nikola Tesla

Is Blackboard the best CMS out there?

Our institution has been using Blackboard (Bb) for a while now as their Course Management System (CMS) of choice with mixed results. Depending who you ask, based on their technical knowledge and their experience using Blackboard (and other CMS solutions) you will get different responses. They range from it is good, does what I need it to do to can we please use anything but Blackboard. Both performance and availability have been known to be a bit spotty and we all know that those two parameters are very important to students and faculty.

My usage has been fairly limited since I don’t teach any courses and my needs are different from those of a faculty (or even some other staff members). This is why I’m probably not the best person to provide an in-depth assessment of Bb v.7.3 (currently in production) and why I turn to those who have more exposure to Blackboard and other CMS tools such as Moodle, Sakai and the likes to hear what your thoughts are.

Is Bb the best or simply the largest solution out there? What are you running/using at your school/work and how satisfied are you with that product?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • JJ

    When I saw this headline on your Twitter page, I thought you mean 'Content Management System,' not 'Course.' So my initial reaction was 'UH, NO.'

    I haven't used any other course management systems besides Blackboard, since, well, MSU only uses Blackboard. I can say though, that I do not like Blackboard, and keep a backup of all the documents and announcements on my own faculty web page.

    Now, I can easily just put everyone on my web page and ignore Blackboard, but then I have a handful of students who use Bb in all of their other courses and expect me to follow suit. They ignore the web page and complain, so now I have to manage my courses on two sites.

    This annoys me greatly and I am not shocked to hear that the next version of Bb's install at MSU is being postponed until next Fall. I'd like to hear the experiences from users of other course managements systems, though.

    I must say, though – ever since MSU moved Bb to in-house from montclair.blackboard.com to blackboard.montclair.edu, there have been great improvements in reliability and stability. Goes to show how support from Blackboard themselves was lacking…

  • Bb seems too expensive and cumbersome considering open source alternatives. We will definitely go with Bb (v.9.1 at that time I believe) in the fall of 2010, but I believe that we should seriously consider and evaluate alternatives and find the best available solution for MSU.

  • Bb seems too expensive and cumbersome considering open source alternatives. We will definitely go with Bb (v.9.1 at that time I believe) in the fall of 2010, but I believe that we should seriously consider and evaluate alternatives and find the best available solution for MSU.