Collaborative learning spaces empower faculty in innovative learning environment
BEAVERTON, Oregon — Biamp Systems, a leading provider of innovative, networked media systems, today announced its Tesira® digital signal processor (DSP)-based media system is helping to drive a cutting-edge learning experience at Queen's University at Kingston in Ontario, Canada. At the university, the flexible system is distributing clear, natural-sounding audio in collaborative learning rooms.
Designed and installed by integrator PJS Systems, Queen's University created two collaborative learning spaces shared by individual faculties that provide students with an interactive learning experience and enable faculty to engage using new and innovative teaching methods. Both rooms feature student pods and central instructor stations equipped with microphones, speakers, and AV inputs. The larger room provides 34 tables, each divided into two pods with 22-inch monitors. The smaller room features 10 pod-tables equipped with 60-inch Sharp Aquos interactive boards, with each table seating eight students.
A Tesira SERVER-IO frame was installed in each classroom. When the instructor is leading class, the system distributes audio to the speakers at each individual pod, while students have the ability to use a "push to talk" button to speak with the instructor. When small groups are working together in collaboration mode, the instructor can go around the room and activate microphone feedback at each pod for bidirectional communication, allowing the instructor to quickly monitor student progress without leaving his or her station. In addition, by incorporating an Extron fiber-optic matrix switch and linking the two Tesira SERVER-IOs via AVB, the classrooms can collaborate with each other, allowing one instructor to lead a session in both rooms simultaneously.
"One of the great benefits of the Tesira system is its automatic gain control, which provides a lot of flexibility in capturing natural-sounding audio from the dynamic microphone positions throughout the classrooms," said Kyle Matheson, senior project manager with PJS Systems. "Because of the Tesira's versatility, we were able to easily unify both classrooms and incorporate some custom features that instructors had requested, like turning the push button into a 'Jeopardy'-style buzzer. The classrooms have proven to be quite effective; other faculty groups are now talking about implementing similar solutions of their own."
"By using AVB, Tesira's networking capabilities provide the flexibility and scalability for any installation, while our speech-processing technologies deliver the outstanding audio quality required in learning environments," said Steve Kawasaki, sales development director for Western North America at Biamp. "We are delighted to see Queen's University utilizing our solution to redefine the collaboration process and look forward to helping the university extend the interactive learning experience beyond these initial rooms."