Expanding on the OCIO's Year of eLearning efforts, the planned update to Carmen in late December will bring a number of positive changes to the learning management system.
One of the most anticipated changes will be improved support for mobile devices. This feature will allow students to view Carmen content, news, schedule, and grades from mobile devices. The interface is not device dependent; it's compatible with most smartphones, including iPhone, Blackberry, and Android. Recent poll results from the Undergraduate Student Government suggest students will welcome this functionality.
For instructors, the updated system will include new tools and improvements to existing tools that will increase efficiency in designing new courses and re-using existing courses. A Course Builder tool and an Instructional Design wizard should be useful as faculty develop supplemental online materials or move quarter-based or new semester-based courses online. Another new tool allows instructors and course coordinators to easily manage dates associated with material that has been copied from one term’s course site to another’s.
Finally, Desire2Learn, the vendor that develops the software behind Carmen, has implemented widespread changes to make the system more accessible to people who use adaptive technologies such as screen readers. The National Federation of the Blind has awarded these improvements a "Gold Level" of recognition.
More information about the update is available at elearning.osu.edu/carmen-help/common/dec2010update.htm