Slack vs D2L (Desire to Learn / BeachBoard)

I’ve now used Slack for both 100% online courses, and for Hybrid courses. At the end of each I’ve asked students what they thought of Slack and if it was any better than the university’s stock BeachBoard (D2L / Desire to Learn).

* 100% Online Students – almost unanimously say that Slack is so much better than BeachBoard. Easier to use. Friendlier. Way better mobile app.
* Hybrid Students – mostly say that Slack is too hard, unnecessary, and that BeachBoard is better.

I think what this means is that when you really immerse in something, in this case, Slack in the 100% online course, students learn the tool and appreciate the power of the platform and its environment.

In a hybrid class, student watching of videos is limited, reading of activity briefs is limited, and a tool like Slack is just a place (chore) to leave some mandatory video response comments — vs the 100% online class where, in the absence of F2F, we “live” on Slack.