Education and innovation will take starring roles at CanvasCon hosted by California State University, Los Angeles (Cal State LA) on Friday, March 23 from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. The one-day, regional event has something for both higher ed and K–12 educators, from expert users of the Canvas learning management system (LMS) to the Canvas-curious. You can attend sessions that are packed with edutech best practices presented by teachers, innovators, and thought leaders.

CanvasCon Cal State LA

Cal State LA is a public university in the center of Los Angeles and one of the 23 universities in the California State University (CSU) system, the largest four-year public university system in the United States. Cal State LA has a diverse student population and is known nationwide for its business and nursing programs. Recently, Cal State LA has been ranked number one in the U.S. based on the upward mobility of its students.

For a preview of this CanvasCon event, we spoke with Cal State LA’s Director of Academic Technology, Beverly Bondad-Brown.

GIVEN THAT YOU ARE GOING THROUGH A CANVAS PILOT AND ALSO HOSTING A CANVASCON, WHY DO YOU BELIEVE IT’S IMPORTANT FOR THE EDTECH COMMUNITY TO COME TOGETHER?

BB: My experience has been that the edtech community is very collaborative. We love sharing ideas with one another. Since we are currently piloting Canvas, I am eager to hear and see how other institutions are using Canvas.

DESCRIBE THE CAMPUS. WHAT CAN PEOPLE EXPECT?

BB: The Cal State LA campus is right between downtown LA and the San Gabriel Valley. CanvasCon participants will walk through our Luckman Fine Arts Complex where world renowned music, dance, theatre, visual arts, and films are hosted. The conference will take place in our University Student Union and Golden Eagle Ballrooms, which have hosted many local and regional events. Beyond the great conference facilities, attendees can expect great weather (we ARE in Southern California), an easy to navigate campus, and tons of local attractions to enjoy if you stay the weekend.

WHAT’S THE CANVAS STORY ACROSS THE CALIFORNIA STATE SYSTEM?

BB: Canvas is increasingly becoming popular across the CSU system. Over the last year, a handful of CSU campuses have either migrated to or are piloting Canvas. Much of this has to do with the recent contract with the CSU Chancellor’s Office, and that virtually all California Community Colleges have moved to Canvas. That means most transfer students would come to a CSU campus with familiarity with the Canvas LMS. That is appealing to those who support the LMS. There is less of a support need for these students as they can seamlessly transition to their new campus without having to learn a new LMS platform. I anticipate that many more CSUs will begin LMS evaluations in the next few years and will strongly consider Canvas as a viable option.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE SCHOOL’S INITIAL THOUGHTS ABOUT THE CANVAS PILOT?

BB: Our Canvas pilot is going well. We have a small pilot with nine courses and just over 200 students. The pilot faculty opted in with very little notice before the Spring 2018 semester—like two to three weeks before the semester started! However, we have found that the transition was very easy for them. We have had very few questions come in regarding their course migration from Moodle to Canvas—many did this on their own. Also, we have heard that the chat support has been super helpful to the pilot faculty and students. They quickly get resolutions to any questions and my team does not even need to get involved. Overall, it has been great and the reps we work with have been great as well.

To learn more about this CanvasCon event and to register, click here. Hope to see you there!