The evaluation phase continues and is still on track for completion in February:
- Functionality testing is underway. Each ELIG has been assigned part of the specification to test and we are putting together a list of ‘showstoppers’ for each VLE.
- Student Usability testing – Over 40 students have volunteered to be involved in the usability testing. Our first session took place on Wednesday 14th December with 6 students (2 FoE, 4 FoNS) and went very well.
- Migration testing – There has been a slight delay in the migration testing due to issues converting the existing CE8 courses. These have now been converted and imported into both VLEs and we will be issuing access to them in the next week.
- Q&A sessions – we have held a Q&A session with each vendor to discuss issues and specific functionality. These have been very useful and we anticipate holding another session for each vendor in January.
In addition to the continuation of the functionality and migration testing the following will take place in January:
- Student Usability testing – further usability testing sessions will take place in January (dates to be confirmed).
- Roadmap sessions - we will be scheduling roadmap sessions to find out about future functionality planned for both VLEs.
- Contacting other institutions – we have now developed a set of questions to ask institutions already running the pilot VLEs. We are in the process of identifying the institutions to contact.
Both VLEs have now been installed and configured and training for key e-learning support staff took place at the end of October.
The evaluation phase has now started and is still on track for completion at the beginning of February:
- the e-Learning Implementation Groups have been assigned parts of the specification for testing whether the functionality exists and highlighting any usability issues.
- A sample course has been developed in both VLEs for the student usability testing which is expected to take place at the beginning of December.
- We have identified a selection of courses to test the migration tools and expect to migrate the courses by the end of November. Faculties will be required to review the migrated courses and provide feedback on the effectiveness of the migration tools.
- Faculties will be co-ordinating functionality testing and will approach staff directly.
The pilot phase of the VLE Review is now in progress and we aim to have both VLEs installed by mid-October. Training for key e-learning support staff will be taking place at the end of October. We will be starting the evaluation phase in November and this is expected to run until the beginning of February. We will be sending a request out for students and staff to be involved in the usability testing. Faculties will be co-ordinating functionality testing and will approach staff directly.
Following evaluation of the responses to the Request for Information, the VLE Review Working Group have decided to pilot two VLEs. This decision was based on the functionality of the VLEs (based on the specification developed as part of focus groups held with staff and students), the technical architecture, the evaluation of the VLE presentations and pricing. The choice of VLEs and the reasons for this decision are provided in a document on SharePoint:
Next steps: The pilot phase will run from September 2011 to January 2012 and will enable staff and students to test the VLEs chosen. Further information about the pilots will be available in due course.
Last week we saw presentations of the four VLEs under consideration. Each presentation was attended by around 30 people (some in person and some via the live broadcast). The presentations gave us an excellent overview of the functionality of the VLE and how each VLE meets our requirements, as well as the ability to assess the usability of the VLE.
Next steps – the VLE Review Working Group will be following up on a number of the points raised as a result of the presentations and continuing their analysis of the responses to the Request for Information. The group will be meeting at the end of July in order to decide which VLE(s) to pilot in the autumn term.
The responses to the request for information were received in 13th June and are currently being considered by the VLE Review working group. To support the responses the VLEs under consideration are being presented this week in a series of 4 presentations from the VLE vendors or partners to the open source VLEs. The presentations are being broadcast and recorded for staff and students unable to attend in person.
For further details about the presentations or for access to the broadcast/recordings please contact Julie Voce.
To support for ‘request for information’ process we will be holding a series of vendor presentations where the VLEs under consideration with be demonstrated. We are currently finalising the details of these presentations, but expect them to take place during the week commencing 27th June, 10am-12pm each day. Please note this is subject to vendor availability and the dates may be subject to change.
We have now put together and sent out a ‘Request for Information’ (RFI) document to selected suppliers. The RFI will help us to establish which VLEs meet our requirements requirements in terms of functionality, usability, price, reliability and infrastructure. The process will be used to identify no more than 2 solutions with a view to piloting the solutions from September to December 2011. The pilots will enable us to evaluate the functionality, usability and reliability of the system and choose one VLE to become the new College solution. The deadline for responses is 13th June.
Following two meetings in February, the VLE Review working group have now finalised and prioritised the specification. A tender document is currently being prepared.
View the final specification
The specification for the new VLE has now been compiled and organised ready for prioritisation. The members of the VLE Review working group have been asked to assign priorities for particular parts of the specification from their Faculty/group’s perspective in order to inform a final priority for each item.