Susumu Kasai, Professor of Computer Science and Information Systems at Salt Lake Community College (SLCC), knows both the importance and the value of collaboration. Although the institution uses the Canvas learning management system (LMS) as its primary vehicle for course design and delivery, its educators also recognize the advantages of digital solutions in teaching and learning. Until recently, however, no one at SLCC had attempted to integrate a digital product into Canvas. For the “inaugural” attempt, selecting the right digital product wasn’t enough: Susumu’s department also wanted the right publishing partner. They selected SAM (Skills Assessment Manager) from Cengage Learning and are pleased with their choice.

SLCC professors know that they and their students can benefit from the convenience and learning support provided by digital solutions such as SAM; however, the importance of using instructor-developed materials is ingrained in the college’s teaching culture. They believe that instructors’creation and use of their own materials plays a key role in the development of a sense of ownership over the course, which, in turn, has a positive impact on the quality of the course.
With Cengage Learning’s assistance, SLCC developed a course that achieved the college’s objectives. SAM offered Susumu and her colleagues a flexible solution that integrated perfectly into Canvas while enabling professors to incorporate their own content, including materials relevant to the two customized editions of textbooks used in the course.
About 50% of the course grade in the pilot course was tied to SAM. Students gave the course, which was taught in three sections, high approval ratings: 80% liked the videos and eBook accessible through SAM, and nearly as many had a favorable impression of the auto-graded Excel and Access tasks in SAM. Susumu’s “approval ratings” of the integration are high as well, and he says he would definitely recommend Cengage Learning solutions to others.

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