Project History

Today, Montana University System institutions use three separate Learning Management Systems (LMS). In most cases, these systems have been in use for more than a decade, during which time pedagogies have evolved, use of learning management tools by faculty has grown, and the range of solutions available has expanded significantly.

In November 2021, the Board of Regents charged the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education to work with campuses to identify a single Learning Management System (LMS) vendor for the Montana University System.  In Spring of 2022, an Advisory and Steering Committee was formed, consisting of faculty, staff, students and administrative leadership from across the system. This group conducted a needs analysis, which informed a request for proposals that launched in late Spring of 2023.

During the summer of 2023, vendor proposals were scored by a team of IT professionals, LMS administrators, and faculty. From this process, two vendors (D2L and Instructure) were invited to move forward to a demonstration phase, where a 14 member panel scored the two finalists on the faculty and student experience, their administrative, IT and analytics capabilities, and course migration fidelity.  Additional factors that were evaluated at this stage were cost and company profiles.  At the end of this process, Instructure (Canvas), emerged with a clear consensus.

You can access information regarding the MUS single LMS project on the MUS Single Single Learning Management System webpage.

Most Recent Update from Tech (July 1, 2024)

I am excited to let you know that as of today, July 1, 2024, we are on schedule for the Great (LMS) Migration.

  • We have approved the pilot courses after only a few minor changes that involved rubrics and a couple missing files. Those are all good now.
  • We have an approved MT Tech-branded template that will be applied to all courses from the North campus that will be migrated during these first two runs. We are starting work on a customized template for Highlands, which should be ready shortly.
  • We have seen about five samples of courses that have been migrated, and they look really good. It is clear that there will be some cleanup of course, but that is to be expected, and the Center for Academic Innovation is here to help where needed.
    • We will be approving the final migration of RUN 1 this week. Run 2 is still scheduled for late December, so if you have anything you would like to add to that list, you may. The Run 1 list is closed as of today.
  • We will be employing a new tool that will improve communication throughout the courses using pop-ups, messaging, and even analytics.
  • Training opportunities are being scheduled and will be announced via the Weekly, the Tech calendar, and targeted emails.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns about this project, please contact Kat McCormick at 4189, or reach out to IT via the Helpdesk. We will be happy to help in any way we can!

Master List: Migrating Courses 

Thank you for providing your course information for Run 1! If you still have courses to be in Run 2, please add them to the new list following directions. Run two will be completed by late December.

  To access this form, please follow these steps:

  1. navigate to the LMS Migration Master List

  2. Select Edit in grid view at the top left of the page     

  3. Please fill in all the information you can, to the best of your knowledge:

    1. Under the Instructor, please enter your name,

    2. the 5-digit CRN number (or METAcode),

    3. the name of your course,

    4. the last semester and year in which it was taught,

    5. and (if you know) the "run" you would like it to be included in.  (the migration schedule is: Run 1 completed by Sept. 1 and Run 2 will be completed by the end of December. We will be fully in Canvas and out of Moodle by January 25). 

  4. Select Exit grid view.  

A notification will be sent to CAI letting us know that content has been added, so that's all you should need to do! If you have any questions or problems entering your information, please contact me at or


Training Catalog with session description [coming soon].

Training Options
Recorded Canvas Trainings

Recorded training sessions from Instructure. Topics include:
- global and course navigation
- content creation (including assignments)
- creation and management of Classic Quizzes
- course flow and delivery
- student groups and collaboration
- grading and feedback

In-house Training

The Center for Academic Innovation offers a number of in-house developed training sessions that you can register using the link below. Examples topics include:
- A 1-1 comparison of Moodle to Canvas
- content creation
- using Panopto, Zoom, or other 3rd party tools with Canvas
- organizing your course effectively
- using the templates to their fullest potential

Custom Training Request

Use this request to schedule training for your own group, unit, department, or college. Suggested formats are (most can be designed for online or face-to-face delivery.)
- boot camps
- webinars
- short "speed-training" during department meetings
- one-on-one training on special topics


After an extensive vetting process, the Montana University System selected Canvas by Instructure as its single Learning Management System. In particular, Canvas impressed the evaluation team with its:

  • Ease of use and intuitiveness
  • Mobile friendliness
  • Strong analytics that are easily accessible to faculty
  • Canvas Commons, which enables easy sharing of content within and across institutions
  • Flexible interoperability with outside tools

Moving to a single vendor across Montana’s public colleges and universities will help lower ongoing licensing costs, provide smaller institutions access to new tools, like 24X7 support, and provide students an improved and more consistent experience across the Montana University System.

Run 1, will instructors still be able to use Moodle for the courses this coming fall?
  • Yes. We will be 100% Canvas in Spring (January) of 2025 

For Run 2, I do not have the Spring 2025 writing schedule together yet. Should I send you CRNs from the current spring semester instead?

  • Run two would be previous courses that don't need to be ready by January, so yes, current semester or earlier.

Yes. Not only will on-demand training be available, but you will also be able to reach out to the Center for Academic Innovation for specific training needs. In addition, there will be a Resident Expert Team (RET) made up of faculty and staff who will help the Center for Academic Innovation train and answer immediate-need questions as we move forward. 

Yes. They are not called "meta courses," but there will be a function that allows the same method of course delivery.

Yes. We are working to continue as many third party tools as possible. These include (but are not limited to) TurnItIn, Proctorio, Panopto, and Zoom. More information will be available as we move forward. 

Other tools the committee is exploring include accessibility checkers, analytics tools, and credentialing (badges). Again, more information will be shared as it is available.

Yes. We are starting with 11 pilot courses from which to work out any rough spots. After these are approved, a mass migration will be done of all courses that are actively used for the past three years. This means that courses that are used solely to provide a syllabus or grades will be saved and archived (to meet record keeping requirements) but will not actually be migrated as an active course.

Because there is a monetary cost for each full course migrated over, it is important that we only migrate courses that have content that will otherwise need to be rebuilt. It is very difficult to determine what courses are actually "active," even if we check the size of the backups. The solution to this is a request that will be sent out to all instructors for a list of all courses that definitely need to be migrated over. This will be sent out as we get closer to migration. 

As a note, the student information is NOT migrated with the courses. Grades, etc., will be archived by MT Tech so they remain available, again to meet requirements.

This timeline is current as of March 27, 2024. Please note it may change as MUS needs evolve. 

Timeline of MUS Single Learning Mangement System webpage. Current as of 3/27/24

For more information...

If you have any other questions or suggestions as we move through this project, please don't hesitate to reach out. This is a big lift, and we welcome any suggestions, concerns, or feedback that will help make it less stressful for all. Thank you in advance for your patience and your dedication to making Tech a better place to work and study.

Kat McCormick
(406) 496-4189