Socially Distanced Academic Design Services
Garth Hemphill | June 8, 2020
Learning will look and feel different for teachers and students during the COVID19 pandemic. Right now, academic administrators are determining ways to support teachers in providing a high quality education to students in the coming year. How do administrators ensure their school provides a high-value program that goes beyond basic online lectures? And what about non-traditional courses in performing arts, labs, and clinics?
Jaffe Holden has a full toolkit of customizable audio and video solutions established through more than 50 years of experience designing smart systems for academic environments. We are leaders in the industry and can help your school quickly push beyond a static video lecture and provide students with a dynamic and engaging learning experience. And, it can be in place by the fall.
Audio and Video Technology to Solve Distance Challenges
There’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding the school year due to the impact of coronavirus. Colleges, universities and K-12 schools are planning a mix of on-campus, distance, and hybrid learning opportunities for students. Many institutions have well-established standards for distance learning AV systems for general classrooms, but what systems, devices, and technology should be used in non-standard classroom environments like chemistry labs, nursing clinics, maker-space classes, interactive classrooms, and performing arts spaces?
With institutions coming to grips with CDC recommendations including six-foot distancing requirements, classrooms might be 1/3 full, with remaining students learning in nearby overflow classrooms, at home, or even in their dorm rooms. How can these displaced students thrive and be fully engaged in their education?
Some faculty will not feel comfortable working on screen but prefer older working styles on the white or black-board, and interacting with students in an informal question and answer manner. In non-standard classrooms, like theater, dance music, film, science labs, electronics labs, and technical training classes, it takes more than screen sharing and lectures to provide a high-quality education!
Jaffe Holden Provides Relief and Solutions
Q: How will you teach a kinesthetic (movement, physical therapy, dance class) with social distancing limitations in place?
A: Multiple camera angles can be combined into a windowed image so the remote student can view the instructor from three or more different angles at the same time. Now students can focus on what they need to see, while other students may want to see a different angle. The teacher does not need to turn in different directions in front of a single camera, wasting precious time repeating instructions. Simple controls allow this to happen effortlessly, even for the non-technically inclined.
Q: How do you facilitate learning in labs, maker-spaces, and technology-based equipment?
A: An overhead camera can zoom in on fine details of the equipment, experiment, or demonstration. It connects wirelessly with a display through a simple switcher. Remote students, perhaps in an adjacent classroom, or in their dorm rooms, can be displayed on a large screen to encourage group participation.
Q: How can technology help instructors teach technical skills such as welding?
A: Jaffe Holden designs easy to use systems that have special camera filters that limit light levels, so the optics are not damaged, even under high brightness and heat levels. Simple switchers allow both video and audio to be toggled between close-up and wide-angle views and follow the instructor as they move to engage the students fully.
Q: How do we support a lecturing professor that continually moves around a whiteboard and desires active student participation?
Jaffe Holden utilizes the most up to date tracking camera technology to give the instructor freedom to move. A wireless microphone on the instructor and a simple wireless controller means no cables to drag around, and you can switch the outgoing video between the instructor camera, a document camera, a microscope camera, or any other specialty camera needed, also allowing for the instructor to stay present in a smaller window in the video stream. Zoning overhead loudspeakers allow the remote audio to be heard everywhere in the class but limits the instructor’s mic audio to the remote student feed, and loudspeakers over the local students.
Jaffe Holden is the industry leader in standard remote learning technology and in highly specialized audio and video technologies. We have 50 years of experience in academic learning environments and can work with your IT and technology departments to provide you with a custom design that works for challenging class environments. We start with a basic design for hybrid learning, and then customize a specific solution by building on that base design and adding the specific equipment needed for your particular needs. This method allows you to have a standardized package with a toolkit of additional devices that can be shared as required between classrooms to handle specific requirements.
To move quickly in concert with your facilities department, we have partnered with highly reputable and responsive AV contractors in different regions. If you need these solutions in a hurry, we can expedite that process with a design/build package. In the Texas region, we have partnered with the highly respected Hairel Enterprises out of Houston for complete installation and on-call services.
Be Ready for the Fall
Academic administrators are facing a challenge. Jaffe Holden is here to help with our toolkit of customizable audio and video solutions to help your school meet and exceed the requirements of socially distanced learning to provide meaningful education. And, it can be in place by the fall.
If you or a colleague are struggling with this issue, please contact Garth Hemphill, Associate Principal of Audio/Video, at GHemphill@JaffeHolden.com or at 713.807.7100 extension 101 so he can walk you through our offering.