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New VLE training sessions get top marks from staff

Training has started for the University's new virtual learning environment (VLE), Canvas, and staff have been singing its praises - describing the sessions as “friendly”, “relaxed” and “hands on”.

While primarily focused on the needs of teaching staff, sessions are also open to professional services staff - especially those working in academic support in Schools or central services.

Professor Lucy Robinson, who sits on the VLE Project Board, helped the Technology Enhanced Learning team finetune their training from the outset. Lucy said:

“The training provides a great introduction to a very impressive platform. It’s designed with academics in mind – saving time and effort and making it easier to teach and learn.  I came away with a better understanding of why we’re moving to Canvas, its benefits and the key dates during the transition period.

“The 24/7 support for Canvas is outstanding – we tested it out and found that you usually receive an answer to your question within a minute. This will be a real lifesaver for staff and students.”

VLE training: the feedback so far

Trainees are given an overview of the new platform and teaching staff will have the opportunity to start working on existing migrated content for their courses.

Project sponsor and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Planning and Resources, Professor Stephen Shute, said: “Canvas represents an important development in improving the student experience here at Sussex, providing valuable new tools for our academics and supporting students in an impressive digital environment.

“It’s a major investment in the resources provided for students. Please make the most of this opportunity to learn how to use this cutting-edge system and enhance the learning experience for your students.”

Dr David Walker, Head of Technology Enhanced Learning, said: “The introduction of the new VLE is an exciting development for the University but we recognise it also represents a change in practice for staff. 

“While work to implement Canvas is ongoing, our goal in commencing training at this stage is to provide staff with as much time as possible to become familiar with the new platform and prepare their course materials ahead of the new academic year.”

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By: Sean Armstrong
Last updated: Friday, 27 April 2018