The team IT for Education of the Center for Information Technology is responsible for all educational applications that are used by both students and lecturers at the University of Groningen. This set of applications includes systems such as Brightspace, Ocasys, the scheduling system, and Kaltura. As you can imagine, a lot of data is being processed by these systems. Two years ago, perhaps the largest project ever of the team was completed, the Future of the Learning Environment. Throughout this project, Brightspace would replace the previous online learning environment Nestor (Blackboard).
In this blog, Ferry Helweg gives an insight into some of the challenges that arose during the transition to Brightspace, and how some of the risks were mitigated when it comes to having control over the data. Also there will be a small comparison made between Brightspace and an open-source alternative.
Ferry Helweg is a junior coordinator of educational applications at the CIT team IT for Education. He is responsible for educational systems that are used at the UG (such as Brightspace and Kaltura). He is also ambassador of the Data Autonomy initiative.
The CIT has started the discussion to investigate the possibilities of how the University of Groningen can gain more autonomy over its data in the future. Together with various representatives from across the University, we are working on a roadmap to promote data autonomy and a strategy that will enable the UG to respect, protect and promote academic freedom in the digital age.
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