The teams in LTW’s Learning Spaces Technology spend a lot of time thinking about how best to provide high quality AV services to a diverse university community across a very mixed estate. We aim to ensure that our technology is universal and accessible to all and that the benefit we provide to the university is useful in enabling accessible and inclusive teaching.
We support 400 rooms and 30,000 hours of teaching every semester. We pride ourselves in providing high microphone quality across the University Estate, hence why we use high-tier quality Sennheiser models. We upgrade and improve our services on a rolling basis. Whenever Sennheiser produce a smaller or lighter model or a new technology solution we check it out. The current model that we provide in teaching rooms is easily worn on a lanyard ( as modelled). This makes it an ideal, gender neutral solution as it doesn’t require a belt or pockets and works fine with any neckline or dress.
It has to be said, we’ve tried out some smaller, wireless mics around the place, but the quality just wasn’t good enough for the serivce we provide for learning and teaching but you can look forward to ‘flexible beamforming‘ from Sennheiser. We’ll be trialling this in the new spaces on campus and in Edinburgh Futures Institute building when it is ready.
Any discussion about wearables in higher education quickly progresses to the age-old question: Can you tell by how some-one is dressed that they are cheating?
Would your exam invigilators know if students were wearing google glasses? How long before there is no more need to write formulae on your sleeve, you’ll be able to just use your cufflink to scroll down? Can you tell how long there is to go on a cheating watch?
It may be that we have to give up entirely on the idea that closed book exams are done in sealed rooms with no extra help.
Or we could do exams in the nude. Or scrubs. Or in special orange exam survival jumpsuits. Good thing we have a costume design degree.
Apparently 2015 is the year of wearable technology. I got blue-tooth gloves for Christmas to match my hounds-tooth check handbag. One makes me look considerably cooler than the other.
The year begins with the launch of our ‘Glasses in Classes‘ competition. Get your best ideas in quick, active learning just got personal.
Some of this tech still costs an arm and a leg, and some of it moves so fast it is retro already, but is very good value for bloggers, punners and journalists. Expect to see blog posts from me entitled ‘She wears it well’, ‘Through glass darkly’ and ‘Wear the wired things are’ etc.