Dresser also eMailed a quote to the Cap Times from an online instructor who would only share her thoughts if she could remain anonymous: “I thought it was particularly problematic that there are no ‘strategies’ to address classes that are 100 percent online. … I’ve had a huge drop rate already and I am not surprised.”

When asked if the UW System might be forced to cancel any courses due to the ongoing problems, Giroux said he wasn’t aware of any plans to do so.

But Giroux also couldn’t offer an assurance the problems would be fixed soon.

“As I understand it, we can’t commit to a certain day for when this will be fixed, but I know our staff have been working on this for awhile now, since issues came up in the summer,” he says.

Recent updates released by the university add: “To date, numerous patches to the system have been applied, however, these efforts have yielded only temporary success. The root cause of these performance problems has not yet been identified.”

The UW System started contracting with Desire2Learn in 2003, when the Canadian company’s product replaced WebCT and Blackboard as the campus’ common e-Learning system.

(c)2012 The Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, Wis.). Visit The Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, Wis.) at www.wisconsinstatejournal.com. Distributed by MCT Information Services

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