- Blackboard announced Wednesday that it will incorporate an online bookstore into its LMS.
- The move is meant to simplify the course material purchase process for students and will kick off this spring with limited trials for select institutions. A full launch is expected this summer.
- Details are still being finalized, but the store will be accessed directly from the LMS with instructor-assigned materials pre-populating in students' shopping carts to streamline their purchase or rental.
Blackboard certainly isn't letting momentum slow from its MyEdu acquisition earlier this month, and this is yet another step toward increasing its support for consumers' preferences. This move won't just streamline the process for students — it'll make things easier for faculty, too. In the new marketplace, faculty will be able to search, find, and indicate the course materials they prefer, which, as mentioned above, can then be pre-populated into students' shopping carts.
The online textbook market, however, is pretty competitive, with ed-centric companies like Chegg and CourseSmart competing for a slice of the pie along with e-retail giants like Amazon.
For a better idea of what the Blackboard Store might look like, check out this conceptual screenshot provided by Blackboard: