Update: April 2019

Learning Management System Review team studying evaluations, preparing final report 

Purdue’s Learning Management System Review team hosted 27 open demonstrations by vendors on Purdue’s three campuses in March, and received more than 1,000 evaluations from faculty, staff and students.

So what’s next in the process leading to a replacement for Blackboard Learn?

“Since the review started in 2018, we've been focused on gathering input,” says Jenna Rickus, associate vice provost for teaching and learning and the chair of the review’s steering committee. “The second phase is really focused on digesting what everyone has told us and coming up with a final evaluation, based on that feedback, of the best option for the University’s next learning management system.”

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Project Overview

The roles of Learning Management Systems (LMS) in higher education, and the technology they rely on, are constantly evolving. In 2018-2019 Purdue initiated a system-wide, comprehensive review of its Learning Management System (LMS) needs, with a focus on the changing and diverse needs of the university’s courses and programs, such as large and small residential courses, online classes, and non-credit and massive open online courses.

The LMS Review, initiated by Jay Akridge, Purdue’s Provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and diversity, and Gerry McCartney, Executive Vice President for Purdue Online and Oesterle Professor of Information Technology, will explore the opportunities for the entire Purdue system.


Currently, Purdue’s West Lafayette and Northwest campuses are under contract with Blackboard Learn; Purdue Fort Wayne has a separate contract with Blackboard Learn, and Purdue Global uses Brightspace Desire to Learn, also known as D2L.

Purdue has no centralized LMS for non-credit offerings and a wide variety of technologies are used at the program and course level to serve specific learning management needs. Although the University has had a long relationship with Blackboard Learn, that management system is being upgraded to Blackboard Ultra, meaning if Purdue stayed with its current LMS provider, significant changes are likely.

Purdue’s West Lafayette campus last reviewed learning management systems during the 2014-2015 school year; Purdue Global last reviewed its LMS needs in 2016. Unlike previous reviews, the current effort will not be a comparison between two competing LMS’s, but rather a comprehensive review of both the University’s needs and the options available, which have significantly changed both in scope and technology.

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