What users are saying about
71 Ratings
3 Ratings
71 Ratings
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Score 8.3 out of 100
3 Ratings
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Score 8.5 out of 100

Likelihood to Recommend

Brightspace

If you're an educational institution (K-12, Higher Ed, etc.), this is an amazing tool, and it will provide you all the functionality to support anything you may want and need it to do.If you are looking at Brightspace as a tool for corporate training, I'm not sure exactly how good or bad it will be for you. My guess would be that it likely depends on your organization's size. Along that line, what I can speak to is how we use it for our customized training and in-house professional development/training, and it works fantastically for that. While we primarily use it for normal higher ed coursework, we regularly do training and professional development for all of our employees and I manage those along with our HR department. Because we use it for many other things as well, all of our employees are familiar with the product, which makes our trainings go that much smoother and makes my job that much easier.
John Bayerl | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

I think that SmarterU can be implemented in any organization in any industry. Especially in industries with more complex training requirements. The administration of the system is simple and the usability of the system to end users is even more simple
David Moore | TrustRadius Reviewer

Feature Rating Comparison

Learning Management

Brightspace
9.3
SmarterU.com
8.5
Course authoring
Brightspace
9.3
SmarterU.com
8.0
Course catalog or library
Brightspace
9.9
SmarterU.com
9.9
Player/Portal
Brightspace
9.7
SmarterU.com
8.9
Learning content
Brightspace
9.3
SmarterU.com
8.0
Mobile friendly
Brightspace
9.7
SmarterU.com
7.1
Progress tracking & certifications
Brightspace
9.3
SmarterU.com
9.9
Assignments
Brightspace
9.7
SmarterU.com
8.9
Compliance management
Brightspace
8.0
SmarterU.com
8.9
Learning administration
Brightspace
9.7
SmarterU.com
9.9
Learning reporting & analytics
Brightspace
9.7
SmarterU.com
6.9
Social learning
Brightspace
8.4
SmarterU.com
7.6

Pros

Brightspace

  • Allowing users to embed content links from YouTube or Google Drive enables learners to experience a richer lesson.
  • Providing a powerful editor that allows developers to also include content from Adobe Stock as well as textbook publishers and cloud storage companies gives more power and creative ability to instructors.
  • Providing scaling for mobile and traditional computer systems ensures students will not have issues on the go.
  • The customization of home pages and groups enable courses to be used for small training sessions with breakout groups, large courses with separate sections, and even just more engaging courses that present themed icons and logos.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

  • Software works on multiple devices: computer, iPad, iPhone, Chromebook, etc.
  • Easy to navigate
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Cons

Brightspace

  • One can feel a bit rushed on the Brightspace platform during the log-out period. Security requirements may require this, but it makes end-users more conscious about getting through content than taking notes.
  • From my experience, there is not a direct connection between the platform and Outlook.
  • Some content on the platform can feel redundant.
Joshua Melder | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

  • Reporting System can be improved.
David Moore | TrustRadius Reviewer

Likelihood to Renew

Brightspace

Brightspace 9.0
Based on 25 answers
I would never give any system a perfect score. In the technology environment today we need to be constantly looking at ways to improve the user experience and LMS companies like Desire2Learn need to know that we have options today with other systems and they need to stay current with features and listen to their customers.
Ed Lovitt | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Usability

Brightspace

Brightspace 6.4
Based on 11 answers
Overall, the learning environment works as expected. However, there are plenty of bugs. For example, for a few versions, trying to print out a PDF from the Content screen in several browsers would produce a blank page. We inform D2L support about these issues, most of which are known issues. However, they are very slow to respond. D2L seems to spend more time selling than actually coding and testing their product. Most of the issues are not major -- however, there have been a few that are unbelievable. In fact, this past week we had a sudden issue where the "Submit" button in quizzes would not appear if users had a certain browser/operating system combination. This is a major problem, if students cannot submit their exams! D2L is slow to respond to these kinds of situations, which do occur more often than I would like.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Reliability and Availability

Brightspace

Brightspace 9.0
Based on 1 answer
Both students and instructor enjoy the 24-hoiur access. After, all isn't that the point of online learning. As an instructor located in an Eastern time zone state it is great to connect with students located in a Pacific time zone state. I have gotten comments about the early hours I am in the course room grading assignments . . . 4:00 a.m. PST; 7:00 a.m. EST So, it's sleep time for my students and "first cup of coffee" time for me.
Randi Tucker Barr, MBA, PhD | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Performance

Brightspace

Brightspace 9.0
Based on 2 answers
Easy to navigate; little to no delay from one section of the course room to another; actually fun to use after overcoming the learning curve.
Randi Tucker Barr, MBA, PhD | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Support Rating

Brightspace

Brightspace 10.0
Based on 6 answers
I have had excellent support from Desire2Learn. Any ticket that I submit is acknowledged immediately and the correction is usually almost as quick. We use this for thousands of classes and it is pretty well liked by both faculty and students. We have been using it for almost 4 years now and most of our instructors have become pretty proficient with it.
Steven Mitchell | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

SmarterU.com 8.0
Based on 1 answer
Really good support initially, now support is OK but we have fewer needs.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

In-Person Training

Brightspace

Did not participate in the in-person training due to distance; training was completed online
Randi Tucker Barr, MBA, PhD | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No answers on this topic

Online Training

Brightspace

Brightspace 4.0
Based on 2 answers
The training provided online did not, necessarily, fit the version of the system that I was using. Screens were somewhat different and not all options were readily available. This could have been due to customization on the part of my institution however, I rather believe it was due to version changes and training materials not yet being updated.
Ken Matthias | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Implementation Rating

Brightspace

Brightspace 1.6
Based on 3 answers
The D2L implementation team listened to our concerns and built a system based upon our needs. We wanted to keep them after the initial implementation.
Ed Lovitt | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Alternatives Considered

Brightspace

I have used Blackboard Learn 8 and 9. I am currently learning about Canvas. Blackboard is overall much clunkier and lacks the intuitive feel in some parts of D2L. Its grade book is much harder to control and manipulate than D2L's. Its navigation menu can be more radically modified from the default than D2L's, but this doesn't seem that useful to me. Discussions in Blackboard can be more easily reorganized than in D2L, but no grading of discussions is possible. Blackboard Assignments is a good innovation which allows markup directly in the students' submissions, but it displays student work in a confusing manner that doesn't allow for any customization, and its markup options need further tweaking. Furthermore, no rubrics can be used in Blackboard in any way to grade any kind of work (that I am aware of). Overall, I would choose D2L over Blackboard.
Tom Carlson | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

Most online LMS systems work really well to track and manage training that the system is delivering. However, most systems are not very good at managing training requirements which are delivered outside of the system. For example, First Aid training, or license requirements are accomplished through third party. SmarterU was the only system we evaluation that was able to track these items with the ability to monitor the renew dates properly.
David Moore | TrustRadius Reviewer

Scalability

Brightspace

Brightspace 9.0
Based on 1 answer
During my first semester working with Desire2Learn the integrated learning management system was more down than up. This meant reconfiguring assignment due dates, frustration for both the instructor, students, and help desk staff. After an upgrade, Desire2Learn has been reliable.
Randi Tucker Barr, MBA, PhD | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Return on Investment

Brightspace

  • I cannot speak to whether this system is less expensive than the more fully featured Blackboard, but employees are far less efficient, frustrated, and require frequent calls to the help center to set up fairly simple course templates.
  • I have been asked to consider teaching courses which will be completely online at my current institution. I have done such online courses several times at other universities, but I have decided Desire2Learn is too frustrating and cumbersome to do so. I am now exploring using Google Drive to teach a course online. Otherwise, I will not teach online until required or I find an alternate system.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

SmarterU.com

  • It has helped us to make sure our training is consistent across multiple locations and trainers and ensured less drift.
  • The course tracking and certification allows us to manage new hires and make sure they complete all required training to later achieve an RBT certification.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Screenshots

SmarterU.com

Pricing Details

Brightspace

General

Free Trial
Yes
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Yes
Entry-level set up fee?
No

SmarterU.com

General

Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No

Rating Summary

Likelihood to Recommend

Brightspace
9.2
SmarterU.com
9.8

Likelihood to Renew

Brightspace
9.0
SmarterU.com

Usability

Brightspace
6.4
SmarterU.com

Reliability and Availability

Brightspace
9.0
SmarterU.com

Performance

Brightspace
9.0
SmarterU.com

Support Rating

Brightspace
10.0
SmarterU.com
8.0

Online Training

Brightspace
4.0
SmarterU.com

Implementation Rating

Brightspace
1.6
SmarterU.com

Scalability

Brightspace
9.0
SmarterU.com

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