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Transition Announcement

Message to Tulane University Constituents Formally Announcing the Canvas LMS Transition:

To: All students, faculty and staff
Subject: Transition to Canvas Learning Management System begins Fall 2016

Dear Tulane Community,

It is the mission of Technology Services to provide our community with those technologies that most readily support our academic mission as a university. To this end, for the past year we have been piloting the Canvas Learning Management System as a possible replacement for Blackboard. During this year-long pilot we were able to run over 140 courses comprised of 90 faculty members and over 1,800 students through the Canvas system and the results have been overwhelmingly positive. The wide majority of both students and faculty surveyed about the pilot strongly agreed with the adoption of Canvas over our current Blackboard system. In light of these encouraging results, today we are announcing the start of a year-long transition from Blackboard to Canvas.

Here are few details on our transition. During the Fall 2016 term we will operate Blackboard and Canvas simultaneously with the goal of having all users in Canvas by the start of the Spring 2017 term. Blackboard will be available for the entire academic year, but we would like to see everyone using Canvas during the Spring term.

This summer we will transfer all courses and organizations from the 2015-2016 academic year from Blackboard into Canvas. This transfer will be automatic and our Academic Technology staff will be on hand to help you get accustomed to the new system.

To help with this transition we have scheduled a large number of faculty trainings this summer and fall. We have also set up a portal at with all of the information regarding the transition as well as helpful videos to get you started. These videos are for both students and faculty.

Canvas is up and running right now. All classes have been pushed to the Canvas system through the same process that feeds Blackboard. You can login with your usual Tulane credentials. If you are a faculty member and would like to start teaching in Canvas immediately please feel free. You can find training times at the link above. You can also contact the Academic Technology team directly at for training and support.

Here is the official Transition Timeline:

  • July 31st – Course transition begins – Canvas will copy all 2015-2016 academic year courses over.
  • Fall 2016 – Canvas is available for all courses across all campuses. Blackboard will still be active.
  • Spring 2017 – Canvas will be the LMS of record for the University. Blackboard will be available for archival purposes.
  • July 1, 2017 – Blackboard will become unavailable.

The Learning Management System is a vital part of the University’s academic mission, and we have not undertaken this change lightly. The survey results and comments from our pilot members can be seen at the link above. We have allowed a full academic year in order to afford this transition as much lead time as possible. We look forward to working with you to effect this exciting change.


Charlie McMahon
Vice President of Information Technology
Chief Technology Officer
Tulane University