Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Blackboard to Canvas: campus perspective

Chloe Williams

UTSA has officially completed the transition to Canvas as the university’s online Learning Management System (LMS) after using Blackboard for 11 years. Benefits of the new platform include a mobile-friendly interface, personalization options and a centralized resource hub.

At the beginning of the semester, many students opened their laptops on the first week of classes to an unfamiliar setup. For senior Betsy Addo-Mensah, adjusting to Canvas was not as easy as checking items off her to-do list. Her first attitude toward the change was complete disinterest. 

“I felt annoyed seeing [that] I have used Blackboard since my freshman year, and I did not want to relearn a new system,” Addo-Mensah said. “I feel like [Blackboard] was easier to navigate group messages and discussions for a class.”

Despite her unfamiliarity with the LMS, Addo-Mensah said Canvas is more user-friendly, easier to navigate and offers a better mobile experience. She also believes that it is easier to locate course feedback on Canvas than it was on Blackboard. 

“I think Canvas is definitely a better choice for the students,” Addo-Mensah said. Her favorite feature of the LMS is the “Dashboard” tab, as the to-do list feature has helped her better organize assignments and due dates.

Unlike some students who have never worked with the Canvas LMS before, many professors at UTSA had the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of Canvas before the transition went live. As a result, their experience with the LMS was a little different. “There are not any disadvantages that come to mind,” Associate Professor of Public Health, Dr. Jeffrey Howard, said. 

According to Howard, the technology involved with Canvas is more convenient compared to Blackboard. “I think the integration with some of the technology is a little smoother. Some of the assignments and quizzes that I do in my classes are just a little more efficient in the Canvas environment than they were in the Blackboard environment,” Howard said. 

One feature in particular that Howard believes enhances the efficiency of assigned work is the “Student View,” which allows professors to double-check modules and see that every item is where it needs to be before making their changes live.

If you or anyone you know is having trouble with Canvas, check out the Canvas Student Guide or the Getting Started Videos, use the “Help” menu in Canvas to access 24/7 Support or schedule an appointment with the UTS Tech Café by calling 210-458-5555.

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About the Contributors
Bria Collins, Staff Writer
Bria (she/her) is a third-year Modern Language Major with two minors in Linguistics and Film. She has multiple outlets for her creativity including adding to her skills in graphic design and social media marketing. Her passion is creating dramatic literature through the art of screenwriting. Most of her inspiration comes from her growing faith in Christ and the acquisition of knowledge from studying the history of other countries, cultures and traveling. Her dream job is to dabble internationally in the film industry as a series screenwriter.
Chloe Williams, Managing Editor
Chloe (she/her) is a senior majoring in Business Marketing with a minor in Adaptive Decision Business Models. On her off days you can find Chloe thrifting, being a self-proclaimed food critic or outside enjoying nature. This is her third year at The Paisano and she is excited to serve as Managing Editor.

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