D2L Celebrates Excellence in Learning, Reveals Inspiring 2017 Brightspace Award Winners | Press Release | D2L
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D2L Celebrates Excellence in Learning, Reveals Inspiring 2017 Brightspace Award Winners

Press Release

Four Award Recipients Have Adopted Cutting-Edge Techniques to Reach Every Learner

To reach every learner, start with an engaging and modern learning experience. This was a distinct theme of D2L’s 2017 Brightspace Excellence Awards, announced today at FUSION 2017. This year’s four award winners across three categories each harnessed the power of Brightspace to improve learner engagement while increasing efficiency and reducing costs.

“As many more learning institutions embrace Brightspace, there is incredible competition for the Brightspace Excellence Awards,” said John Baker, CEO of D2L. “ Congratulations to the four winners for delivering a truly inspiring learning experience.”


The two Excellence Awards celebrate inspiration and innovation and award institutions that deliver unique and collaborative teaching and learning experiences that reach every learner:

  • Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ): Madeleine Green, Manager, eLearning and Educational Technologies
  • District School Board of Niagara (DSBN): Robert Dunlop, blended learning resource teacher; James Reschke, district eLearning coordinator

ISQ, the non-profit member organization for Queensland independent schools, Australia, rolled out Brightspace as its first learning management system (LMS). Over the past year, ISQ released new courses for teachers and school leaders on Child Protection, Domestic and Family Violence, and Partnering with Local Indigenous Communities. The three courses, which are voluntary, attracted more than 4,400 enrolments. Surveys of ISQ’s online course participants showed satisfaction rates above 90% along with substantial cost savings compared to offline learning.

DSBN is harnessing the power of Brightspace by putting it at the center of the classroom as a navigation and presentation tool and as a communication tool with parents. Many teachers have created their own innovative widgets within the platform, including Brag Boards to highlight student success, Lost and Found, Dinner Table Talk, and more. With an 80% voluntary adoption rate, the platform is averaging 5,000 new users a year in elementary school and has more than 30,000 users in total.


The Excellence in Integrations and Extensibility Award recognizes Brightspace Developer Platform users. Brightspace offers open APIs and integration tools. With the Brightspace Developer Platform, customers can extend and enhance their Brightspace solution in countless ways. Past winners include extended Brightspace solutions which improve productivity and collaboration.

University of Arizona: Alex Angeles, Senior Applications Systems Analyst/developer; David Baty, Information Technology Manager; Mark Bryant, Senior Director, Instructional Support; Adam Brokamp, Senior Business Analyst; Mark Felix, Director, Instructional Support; Garrett Flora, Instructional Applications Support Specialist; Jayaram Timsina, Senior Application Director.

Using Valence, the University of Arizona developed a method for instructors to create Brightspace courses on demand and roll them out to its 42,000 learners. The new tool is based upon a mobile, responsive website and supports a drag-and-drop UI to make it easy for nearly 4,000 tenured faculty and adjuncts to build course sites and arrange their sections. At the end of the term, a single click pulls grades out of D2L and submits them to PeopleSoft so students can instantly see them. The time savings and increased productivity are substantial.


The Excellence Award for Accessibility awards a team that has made online learning accessible to all learners in innovative ways.

The University System of Georgia eCampus: Lauren Hamel, Website Developer; Steven Schretzmann, Multimedia Developer; Ngoc Vo, Project Manager/Instructional Designer; and other contributors: Michael Harris; Yi Jin; Christy Talley-Smith; Wesley Steverson.

Using Brightspace, the Instructional Design team at USG eCampus replaced its old course template for eCore courses with a new interactive version that increased interactivity through drop-down menus, flashcards, interactive quizzes and video content. The new template was created with a priority on accessibility features including tabbed, readable, tooltips, and alternative text.

“We created Brightspace because we knew instructors required a modern learning experience to truly reach every learner,” said John Baker, CEO of D2L. “The esteemed recipients of the Brightspace Excellent Awards are great leaders that have harnessed the capabilities of Brightspace to transform learning.”

About Brightspace

D2L’s Brightspace is a digital learning platform that helps schools and institutions deliver personalized learning experiences in a classroom or online to people anywhere in the world. Created for the digital learner, Brightspace is cloud-based, runs on mobile devices, and offers rich multimedia to increase engagement, productivity and knowledge retention. The platform makes it easy to design courses, create content, and grade assignments, giving instructors more time to focus on what’s most important – greater teaching and learning. At the same time, analytics reports track and deliver insights into the performance levels of departments, courses, or individuals. Brightspace was recently named the #1 LMS in Higher Ed by Ovum Research and #1 in Adaptive Learning by eLearning Magazine. In addition, Aragon Research included Brightspace in its highly-coveted Hot Vendors in Learning list.

About D2L

D2L is the software leader that makes the learning experience better. The company’s cloud-based platform is easier to use, more flexible, and smart. With Brightspace, companies can personalize the experience for every learner to deliver real results. The company is a world leader in learning analytics: its platform predicts learner performance so that companies can take action in real time to keep employees on track. Brightspace is used by learners in higher education, K-12, and the enterprise sector, including the Fortune 1000. D2L has operations in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, Brazil, and Singapore. www.D2L.com

D2L Media Contact

Tory Waldron

Senior Manager, Corporate Communications, D2L Corporation


Twitter: @D2L

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