We have been using Moodle in our department for over 7 years and we love it. The college over all uses BlackBoard and now there are whisperings in the wind that BlackBoard will be the one LMS to rule them all. We are worried about this as our entire outcome assessment strategy requires Moodle and what it offers. Students that take classes in our department have given us plenty of feedback that they prefer Moodle as an LMS to BlackBoard. We are not sure if that is because Moodle is inherently better than BlackBoard or because the other classes that are being run on BlackBoard are just being badly run.
Have any of you moved your institution from BlackBoard to Moodle, and if so do you have any data (pre Moodle and then post Moodle) that could indicate that moving was an effective thing to do? Our distance ed committee is open to suggestions, but the voice of our department is not enough, we need data and case studies. If anybody can help me with this it would be most appreciated.
Although I respect decisions being made at British, Australian, and European institutions, I was hoping for some case studies in the U.S. I liked one of the posts for that link however which in a nutshell said to not make decisions based on popularity. I am weary of the "herd" mindset regarding technology decisions. Unfortunately, my institution seems to like finding a herd to follow. Moodle has meet every requirement of our program and I am positive will do it for the entire college as well. However, folks seem to not believe that the system you pay a lot less for can actually be the better both because it's more robust and also because of a better foundation in distance ed/ online pedagogy. I am no stranger to Blackboard, and in my opinion Moodle is a much better option, but opinions are not enough.
Some of the things you mention sound like common Moodle Myths: http://docs.moodle.org/23/en/Moodle_myths
There are plenty of US universities moving to Moodle. I was at the Mountain Moodle Moot, and there were people from nearby universities there making the move.
You could also look through the list at http://moodle.org/sites/index.php?country=US
This is now a few years old, but well worth a read: http://moodle.org/mod/data/view.php?d=19&rid=2531&filter=1
And here is a group of universities working together on adopting Moodle: http://www.clamp-it.org/about-2/
Also, if you university wants to spend Money, that is, if they are more comfortable with a commercial service, you could suggest they talk to Remote Learner or MoodleRooms.