Video-first learning: a long overdue revolution in education?

By Nigel Penny, Education Video Collaboration Specialist, Logitech.

Much like the workplace, the education system was abruptly thrust into a remote learning experiment of unprecedented scale and scope when the pandemic took hold. Whilst over the last couple of years e-learning in schools has been gradually rising in popularity, remote learning technologies, and especially video, well and truly came to the rescue – yesterday’s disruptors have become today’s lifeguards.

A silver lining is that schools have been given the opportunity to challenge the notion of, when, where and how teaching is delivered, in what could be recognised as the start of a remote learning revolution. Yet for this revolution to take root and thrive, it needs the right technologies.

Digital solutions to facilitate new remote learning styles

During lockdown, schools had to innovate and adopt a range of remote teaching methods to ensure pupils remained online and engaged.

The most common was the ‘blended’ approach, combining a mix of faceto-face tuition over video with individual online learning. Another popular model, which has proven especially effective in light of ad-hoc quarantining, is hybrid learning – where pupils can be taught both remotely and in person at the same time, via virtual teaching tools such as Google Meet, Zoom or Microsoft Teams. This still helps to maintain a classroom dynamic, and group work can still be facilitated and monitored by teachers.

For each, there is one core, consistent technology – video. But not all video collaboration tools are created equal, and if done badly, can massively detract from the overall remote learning experience. With hybrid learning set to stay, it’s important that schools opt for the right video solutions that will both perform and stay the distance.

Providing for a video first approach

To keep engagement levels up, it’s important that teachers are capitalising on video in the best way possible. Face-to-face interaction at eye level is key for instruction delivery, and this cannot be achieved with an integrated laptop webcam, instead it calls for a high-performance webcam, such as Logitech BRIO, that allows teachers to stream and record their classes in HD, facilitating more engaging ‘face-to-face’ collaboration. Teachers should also consider software tools such as Logitech Capture, that allows them to connect, record and share content wherever they are.

If in the classroom and carrying out hybrid learning, where pupils are both in the classroom and logging on remotely, schools’ IT departments should ensure they have a powerful all-in-one system that can transcend the requirements of both physical and virtual learning. A video soundbar, such as Logitech MeetUp, includes a microphone, speaker, and high definition camera, that allows teachers to capture content that can be shared with all pupils. And by requiring no more external add-ons than the typical laptop or monitor set-up, it makes the hybrid style of teaching much more accessible.

For pupils using their own computers at home, they will be cut off from face-to-face collaboration and the overall learning experience if they do not have the right video tools. USB plug and play devices, such as high quality yet affordable webcams, like the Logitech C505, and noise cancelling headsets, like the Logitech H390, will help create an immersive learning experience while minimising distraction in their local environment, achieving similar social interactions as if the learner was face-to-face in the class.

Turbocharging the e-learning experience

For e-learning to be a success it is important that technology is an enabler and not a barrier, and encouraging a video-first culture is a big part of ensuring lasting collaboration and engagement throughout the academic year. It’s also critical that the technology is both accessible and robust enough to meet the changing needs of pupils and staff. Get these right, and you and your pupils will be both mastering and leading the remote learning revolution.

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