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University of Birmingham to continue using Canvas for virtual learning


Mark Say Managing Editor

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Image source: Studio

The University of Birmingham has renewed its contract to use the Canvas virtual learning environment (VLE) system.

It has published a contract award notice for a five-year agreement valued at £25 million, saying that it is renewing the licences for a service it has used for over 10 years and emphasising the current need for continuity.

“Removing or replacing Canvas at this stage would adversely impact our immediate strategic goals, would directly have a detrimental impact on the staff and student experience and would require significant time and staff resourcing,” the notice says.

It says the VLE is fundamental to students’ use of learning materials and that it is heavily integrated with other university systems, including data feeds from the Banner student record system.

Course archive

In addition, it holds a large archive of current and past course learning materials and assessment content, and manages access to recordings of lectures.

“The plans to extend the current contract for a maximum period of up to five years,” the notice says. “This time will be used to fully assess and review the requirements on our full VLE ecosystem allowing a full review of our existing digital estate and a consideration of the benefits of other tools which we have enterprise licensing for such as the Microsoft 365 suite of tools.

“This work will be overseen by our Digital Learning Advisory Group, Digital Steering Group and senior academic and professional services sponsors.”

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