Whether you are a faculty member or a student here at UMD online learning like Canvas and CTools, are a critical part of the education process.

In the Fall of 2013 UM-Dearborn switched its online learning from CTools to Canvas. While CTools is still up and running Canvas is taking its place as the online education resource. These two resources also took the place of Blackboard, which is no longer available to students.

The Council of Deans started looking for a new learning management system in the Fall of 2012 to better everyone’s online experience, and chose Canvas upon the recommendations from several faculty members.

While the two are similar, Canvas offers a few more beneficial features than CTools does. Canvas allows for correspondences between the student and their professor, as well as between any other student in the class. Another beneficial feature of Canvas is the app feature.With Canvas being available on the Itunes store and Google Play Store it seems that more students prefer it over CTools.

“I prefer canvas over CTools. CTools seems a little more complicated and harder to use. Especially when I need to find an assignment quickly, Canvas makes that easier,” says student Shadya Essaili.

Student Janne Lee also commented. “I’d rather use Canvas than CTools and I am glad that the University switched. It is helpful to be able to communicate with my professors and other students in the class, all in one place.

The goal of both of these resources is to make learning easier for the student and teaching and communicating easier for the instructor. Canvas instructional staff are always working with professors to train them on how the most beneficial way to use the site. However, it is up to the discretion of the professors on whether or not to use either of these sites with their class.