John (Project Manager): Hi, Mindy! How’s work coming along?
Mindy (Customer): Hey, John! The work is busy as usual. It’s good to see that your team will handle our latest project.
John: No doubt! Will you tell me more about the expectations?
Mindy: For the past 10 years, we’ve used the Blackboard learning management system (LMS) here at Beacon Intercontinental University. While we’ve had good success with this LMS, we are having a tough time justifying the expense, given that more affordable solutions are in the market. The president of the university is adamant that we move to an open-source option. In this case, Moodle.
John: We’ve worked with other clients, both universities and corporate, that like Moodle because it’s a user-friendly solution. It’s also free!
Mindy: The word “free” is liked around here (laughing).
John: Will you please let me know how many students will use the new LMS? Are they both from the undergraduate and graduate schools? What about faculty members and administrators? I also know that you guys have a law school … will they also use Moodle?
Mindy: In the first phase, this LMS will be available for undergraduate and graduate students. Therefore, the number of student users is about 3,500. For these schools, we have 350 faculty and administrators. The law school will be part of the second phase, which will take place in Q4 of this year.
John: Will the LMS be used for only students taking online courses? What about the students who are enrolled in face-to-face sessions?
Mindy: Moodle will be used for both online and face-to-face students. We also teach courses in a hybrid modality, which means that students attend half of the classes online and half in the classroom. Regardless, it’s important that every student enrolled in the university has a username and password to Moodle.
John: What type of content is posted in the classroom? Will the faculty use audio and video files?
Mindy: That’s a good question! Yes … our faculty have excellent experience adding interactive media to the online classroom. They will, however, need training on Moodle. I suspect most of them will catch-on fast, but I’m certain the leadership team wants a training program in place.
John: In the past, we’ve had a 1-day training session for other clients. We can schedule several days to run the training, as this will allow faculty and administrators to pick a date that works for them. Do you have faculty who work remotely?
Mindy: Right! About 20% of our faculty members teach only online courses. Therefore, I will ask our technology folks to allow them to video conference into the training sessions. We might also consider paying for these individuals to travel here to the university for the training component. Let me think about that one and get back with you.
John: Great! Well … we’ve covered quite a bit so far, and I know there’s much more. I will share this information with my team to see what questions they have. At our next meeting, let’s get the tech folks involved. As you know, there’s a ton of technology that is part of this project, so it’s important to get their input.
Mindy: That’s a great idea! Call me to discuss a date and time that works for you.
John: For sure, Mindy! Talk to you soon!