Getting people to use a LMS November 3, 2006Posted by ficial in brain dump, LMS.
During the NITLE conference I brainstormed a bit about how to get people to make more and better use of our LMS. This is a collection of things that came to me over the course of the first day.
- There are examplary users of the system already – the early adopters, the people who got really excited about one feature or another. Make them superstars. Get them to give talks on campus. Copy their stuff to use as examples. Reference them in our own presentations. These people are both the models for everyone else and the seeds of a user community.
- People need to be able to see what others are doing, and not doing. Partly it’s about competition, partly it’s about learning by example, and partly it’s about peer pressure / shame.
- This is tricky since most LMS are closed systems by default. Perhaps automatically create a guest user for each course, though that has its own set of problems. Need to think more on this…
- Feed back
- Add relevant questions to the course evaluation forms. Need to find out who’s in charge of changes to those forms and start working on them.
- Create an anonymous feedback form for courses in the LMS. Probably unrealistic to have it used by default, but make it available for instructors to activate if they so desire. Basically, it’s a way for users (students) to make suggestions to admins (instructors). Hmmm… probably call it a suggestion form rather than a feedback form.
- Get students to demand it. Run lunches/events for students where some with good LMS experiences can talk about why it was so great. Some events just for other students, some for students and instructors. If the students want it, the instructors will comply.
- Initiate an on-going seminar/discussion series for instructors about LMS pedagogy and technique. Bribe with food as needed. Set it going and then step back as much as possible.
- Make courses active/available by default. We need to signal the institutional goal that the LMS will be used and that our students expect it.
- For specific classes, run a discussion with the professor, the students, and one or more itech people to figure out the best ways to use the LMS for that course. Don’t have the resources to do this with everyone at once, but as we can it’d be a good thing to do on the first day of classes when things are usually pretty admin-oriented anyway.
- We can’t just give people a tool and expect everything will work out – we have to teach them how to use it.
- Keep and publicize top 10 lists for good uses and bad uses of the LMS. Keep them general and mostly with out attribution (though maybe reference some examples on the good list – see point 1).