Our View

by Our View

WebCT, the course management system previously used on campus, was replaced this year by Scholar, a program made by Moodle and customized for Simpson. The new course management system was meant to provide a way for students and professors to exchange information for course, in an easy-to-use manner.

Doesn’t that sound vaguely familiar? It should. Last year Information Services worked with a company to create the portal system. The portal, which went live to the entire campus in January, was meant to integrate e-mail, student accounts, degree audit and many other things in one easy-to-use interface. The portal also provided a feature that allowed for the creation of pages for classes or groups, called “team sites.” The team sites were meant to be a place for students and professors to post information or important documents and dates.

So what happened to posting things on the portal? WebCT was bought out by a competitor, and instead of using the software that was already in place, Simpson decided to spend more money on a new interface that is, supposedly, easier to use. But that’s not always the case. If you’re not a professor, posting events to a course site in Scholar can prove to be both difficult and time consuming, which defeats the purpose of the system.

Kudos to Information Services for wanting to provide the campus with the most efficient and up-to-date software to make things easier for both professors and students. But why spend the extra money to purchase something that was basically already in use across the campus?