Video conferencing technology and education

This is the first in a series of articles focused on video conferencing and education. Part 1: The Teaching Predicament focuses primarily on the dilemma faced by educational institutions around the world in relation to teaching.

In recent years, visual communication has gained strong traction as an effective tool to improve the delivery of education. Educational institutions are constantly challenged to maintain consistency and quality of instruction across geographically dispersed branches. For example, will a student enrolled in a bachelor’s degree in business administration at a top American university experience the same quality of instruction in the Middle East or in Europe? The answer to this question will most likely be “not quite”. Although a number of variables are at play here, the most fundamental challenge is access to teachers of the same quality across geographies. Geographic regions can denote different industries in the same city, across cities, countries, and continents. Maintaining teaching standards across continents is even more of a challenge given social, cultural and ethnic differences.

A traditional approach to alleviate the problem somewhat is to regularly fly in teachers to conduct workshops. However, this can prove to be very expensive and cumbersome. Technology has an answer to this common and age-old problem. Although video conferencing solutions have been around since the 1980s, they have never been more affordable and accessible than they are today. Visual communication technology has made leaps and bounds, making it highly immersive and interactive. More importantly, the bandwidth and infrastructure required to support a truly interactive video conference is now becoming more affordable and ubiquitous. This makes video conferencing a viable and practical learning tool for the classroom. Truly interactive visual communication can add a level of teaching consistency across multiple institutes.

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Full HD 1080p video, 360 audio combined with interactive whiteboards and multiple cameras offer the next best thing to being physically present in a classroom. Video conferencing technology has truly reinvented the way teachers and students interact. From sharing lecture notes and feedback to completing assignments and group work, a video conferencing facility in a classroom knows no geographical boundaries. However, choosing video conferencing equipment might seem daunting at first given the sheer volume of options available. I personally prefer Panasonic video conferencing.

Panasonic is a manufacturer of state-of-the-art video conferencing equipment. Your visual communication technology combines full 1080i video with advanced compression algorithms, connecting you with colleagues and experts around the world via standard broadband connections. 360° HD full-duplex audio with echo cancellation technology combined with stunning video offers a truly immersive and collaborative video conference.