Connected Classroom Q & A
Walsh is proud to introduce connected classrooms in the fall 2021 semester. These dynamic learning environments use state-of –the-art technology to allow faculty, in-person, and remote students to interact seamlessly in real time. Connected classrooms give students the flexibility to choose in person or remote attendance and communicate with faculty and their peers in small class settings.
If you have questions about connected classrooms, you are not alone! Here are answers to the questions we hear most often.
How do connected classrooms work?
Walsh’s DREAM team worked closely with the Office of Information Technology (OIT) to design technology that provides a seamless experience for faculty and students.
In-person students come in and sit down, just as they would in any classroom. Remote students attend class by connecting via a Zoom link listed in their course information in the Moodle online learning platform. A large monitor in the classroom displays the faces of remote students.
Cameras track faculty members so they are free to move throughout the room, allowing them to engage both in-person and remote students at the same time. Variable camera angles allow remote students to see the classroom, too.
Microphones installed throughout the room eliminate feedback and automatically adjust as needed and filter out background noise in the classroom so remote students can hear and be heard perfectly.
Faculty are equipped with a smart podium, digital whiteboard, and technology to allow them to:
- Simultaneously share presentations and videos with on-ground and remote students
- Write or draw on the presentation screen
- Mute all participants in case a remote student has unexpected noise in their background
How does Walsh create a seamless experience?
Stable technology and plenty of support! Faculty are trained one-on-one to ensure every process and piece of connected classroom equipment is compatible with their individual teaching methods. The OIT team tests technology before each class and a technician remains in the classroom so that if a technical issue comes up it is addressed quickly.
How do I know which classes will be in a connected classroom? Is there a different process for signing up for these classes?
When registering for classes, courses using connected classroom technology are listed as virtual hybrid (VH). The registration process is the same for all course modalities including VH, virtual synchronous (VS), and virtual (V). Eight connected classrooms are currently equipped, with plans for another three already in motion.
Will connected classrooms continue to be an option post-pandemic?
Walsh has been at the forefront of flexible education for decades. We offered our first virtual course in 1998. Connected classrooms are another way we offer a quality education experience that is accessible, flexible and personal. They are here to stay, and only the beginning of what may be possible. Walsh’s DREAM team is researching ways to continue to enhance experiential learning by incorporating more simulations, augmented, and virtual reality for an even more immersive classroom experience.