Article originally published on E-Learn Magazine on Dic 30, 2016 – Click here for the Spanish version
Academic excellence and passion for innovation are pillars at Manila-based Lyceum of the Philippines University. By April 2016, it had set an important goal for itself: to become an educational leader in e-learning with the help of online solutions such as Blackboard Open LMS and Blackboard Collaborate.
A Legacy in Education
Lyceum of the Philippines University (LPU) opened its doors in 1952 and stands out for its various academic programs in diplomacy, international trade, business, communication, hotel and restaurant management, and tourism.
Additionally, it bears the legacy of its founder, Dr. Jose P. Laurel, who was the only president of the Philippines to serve in all three branches of government. Dr. Laurel was an excellent academic who introduced educational policies based on morality and character.
LPU Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Conrado E. Iñigo, explains that this focus has remained strong over the years. “We have the vision of being an internationally accredited university dedicated to innovation and excellence in the service of God and the country.
Moreover, LPU’s objectives are strengthened by its three capacities in research, instruction, and community extension. Its four centers of excellence, Tourism, Hospitality Management, Business Administration, and Customs Administration (of which LPU is the first Center of Excellence in the country), work in conjunction with other Filipino universities at a local level.
With LPU’s recent migration from Moodle to Blackboard Open LMS, several fundamental objectives were set for the desired implementation and utilization of the platform.
“One of the challenges was managing the budget for this system, obtaining the right equipment, and having the necessary technical conditions,” affirmed Iñigo. Nevertheless, they decided to bet on this tool, applying it both for faculty and staff and students.
Blackboard Open LMS was implemented in three phases:
- Identifying objectives: Tool benefits and implementation were studied within specific projects.
- Building a roadmap: Some areas of the university were immediately strengthened with the introduction of Blackboard Open LMS and a preliminary plan for academic units was developed.
- Implementation: Monitors and projectors were installed throughout LPU to facilitate LMS usage. A pilot plan was carried out and run over two video sessions which took place using Blackboard Collaborate.
After these three phases, Blackboard Open LMS was used on a regular basis among team members, thanks to prior identification of the courses’ preliminary objectives and pilot tests with employees.
According to Iñigo, “We are now implementing action plans that reformulate the initial plan, the most important being the education plan, which is being restructured through online curriculum development. We expect that all programs with Blackboard Open LMS, as their main LMS, will be included in transnational education programs.”
This way, LPU can expand to other regions ensuring the same quality of education, thanks to the support of Blackboard Open LMS. As Iñigo explains, “Blackboard Open LMS is an advanced technology and an easy-to-use system that reaches all of our communities, students, and employees, giving us the capability to offer more online programs. Additionally, it is a great system for the international community, given that it can be explored beyond other activities (such as work commitments), and enables more educational offerings catering to international cooperation and quality standards.”
Photos by: AFP Joseph Agcaoili