Change Management in Canvas

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Definitions

Change Management
A process for limiting the impact of system changes.
Learning Management System (LMS)
Canvas and its associated services.
Instance Management
Learning Technology Services currently manages two Canvas instances: one is the production system, while the other is used for system testing, functional testing, and development.
Requests for Change (RFC)
Before changes are made to production LMS components, Learning Technology Services will create an to allow for testing and discussion. Changes to non-production systems do not normally require an RFC, except for systems which are also hosting production standby systems.
Change Advisory Board (CAB)
CAB meets weekly to review RFCs and discuss their potential impact on campus operations. Each proposed change is discussed for approval. Issues and changes to the process are discussed by CAB.
Major Releases and Updates
Most LMS updates happen automattically without any downtime. However, occasionally, major releases or updates to any LMS component, such as service packs or similar upgrades, may require a substantial effort. Therefore, a project plan should be completed before non-production implementation and testing.

Advisory Groups

Depending on which learning technologies are impacted by change, Learning Technology Services consults with several advisory groups:

  • The LMS Advisory Group oversees academic learning management systems, such as Canvas.
  • The Enterprise Training Collab oversees compliance training systems, such as CSU Learn.

Process Goals

With a goal of increasing campus adoption of our LMS, we strive to:

  • Keeping our systems stable and online.
  • Ensuring system software is current
  • Testing all changes before going into production.
  • Properly communicating with campus by filling all RFC’s at least one week ahead of time.

Learning Technology Services will strive to adhere to this process when any changes are needed for Chico States's learning technologies, including all environments and services related to Canvas, SumTotal, Kaltura, Zoom, and LinkedIn Learning, along with other integrated LMS applications and systems.

Maintenance Schedule

Third-party vendors sometimes schedule maintenance windows outside of this process; when that happens, we will do our best to communicate with impacted users before the maintenance occurs.

When Learning Technology Services is able to control maintenance scheduling, we will strive to ensure maximum stability and availability for all students, faculty, and staff.

The following maintenance windows are typically used for the LMS, and may be leveraged for other systems as well:

  • Overnight maintenance window (no downtime)
    Thursdays, 12AM to 2AM Pacific Time
    Weekly/Monthly
     
  • Morning maintenance window (no downtime)
    Thursdays, 8AM to 10AM Pacific Time
    Weekly/Monthly
     
  • Extended maintenance window (extended downtime)
    Thursdays, 12AM to 8AM Pacific Time
    Quarterly/Between Terms

From time to time, Learning Technology Services will need to schedule maintenance outside of this standard schedule; when that happens, we will be sure to communicate with users.

In addition to the above, our schedule also considers several "blackout windows" where we will avoid making system changes in order to maximize stability during critical usage periods:

  • Two-week window at start of Spring/Fall term, starting one week before first day of classes
  • Two-week window at end of Spring/Fall term, starting one week before final exams

Normal Processes

See our integrations process page for more information on our change management process.

Exceptions to normal processes

 
Emergencies
Emergency patches to resolve security issues, system instability, and similar issues may bypass some or all of this process.
Zero-Day vulnerabilities
Patches to fix zero-day security vulnerabilities will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Details

Article ID: 113678
Created
Fri 12/1/23 2:56 PM
Modified
Thu 1/25/24 10:02 AM