Video conferencing can be used in different ways to improve students' experiences inside the education system. With the help of technology, students and teachers can solve common problems that hinder learning and create a more conducive environment.
Companies such as Blue Jeans have helped reduce travel costs and lessen travel time without compromising the quality of education. At the same time, web conferencing allows for collaboration between various individuals so they can expand their horizons and further their knowledge.
Here are different ways video conferencing can enhance learning:
Virtual Field Trips Make Learning More Fun
Video conferencing improves the experience students get during field trips while eliminating the inconveniences, like long hours of travel, expensive costs, and problems with logistics. Teachers also don't have to worry students wandering away from the group. This also makes it possible for students to explore places that are hundreds of miles away. Virtual field trips can offer a far more educational and enjoyable experience.
The Scholastic Instructor magazine reported about how middle school students at Mt. Lebanon School District in Pennsylvania got to see a volcano gearing up for an explosion in the Caribbean up close, thanks to video conferencing. They witnessed lava flow and ash clouds that covered the island. They even got to analyze real-time seismic data, which was sent to their laptops by the “mission commander”, and suggest solutions based on the information.
Learning a Second Language Is Easier
There are certain nuances in speaking a foreign language that can only be correctly taught by a native speaker. Sometimes, local teachers might lack the proper pronunciation, which is understandable, and it would be challenging for students to speak fluently.
That's where video conferencing can be helpful. Faculty can set up a class with a native through the Internet, just like what teachers at the Oaks Park High School in Redbridge, London did. They set up a class with Jorge Soriano, a foreign language assistant for Spanish, who taught students from five local primary schools how to speak Spanish. The kids also got the chance to learn about Spanish culture.
Learning Becomes a Collaborative Effort
Students can learn the importance of collaboration at an early age. This is a skill that can serve them well once they enter the workforce. Web conferencing lets young students from different schools work together on specific activities, be it an academic problem or something that's more relevant to society, like finding ways to reduce water pollution.
This learning setup allows both students and faculty members to learn new ideas that they wouldn't have known if they just kept to themselves. It fosters cooperation, friendliness, and openness to other cultures.
Reduced Risk of Becoming Affected by Budget Cuts
Budget cuts can affect not-so-popular course. Classes that have very few students may be dissolved when funds are scarce. Three universities proved that budget cuts don’t have to eliminate programs by turning to video conferencing.
According to InsideHigherEd.com, Yale, Cornell, and Columbia University joined forces to launch a pilot program that teaches uncommonly taught languages, like Zulu and Indonesian, across various campuses. The directors of the said universities decided to work together after federal cuts killed foreign language programs in the country.
The students met four days a week in a classroom that had the equipment. Their instructor is in Ithaca, New York.
Students Learn Effectively by Seeing Lessons Come to Life
What's impressive about video conferencing is it allows students to learn more effectively by seeing the lessons come to life. According to the Visual Teaching Alliance, about 65 percent of people are visual learners. This means we understand things better by watching.
If that's the case, then web conferencing in classes can help improve the grades of many students. At the Center of Science and Industry (COSI) in Ohio, live knee replacement surgeries are conducted over the web. Imagine if you're a medical student, this definitely beats reading about the procedure in books.
Weather Disturbances Can't Keep You from Learning
It's normal to experience occasional weather disturbances. Heavy rains, floods, and winter storms will keep you from going to school. But that doesn't necessarily mean miss your classes. Video conferencing keeps everyone from missing out on important lessons right in the comfort of their own homes.
Technology today is different from ten years ago. It has evolved into something that makes our lives more convenient and interconnected with one another. Using this kind of technology on education also paves the way for individuals to communicate with each other effectively and efficiently. And since video conferencing technology is continuously evolving, we can be assured that it can be used to improve not just the education but other industries as well.
Blue Jeans makes video communications easy. It brings together students, teachers, and industry leaders in a fun, collaborative environment. With its technology, learning becomes more enjoyable.
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