Teaching fellows Miriam Schwiening and Joanne Raynor wanted to investigate the use of classroom technology that might help reduce their dependency on paper printouts. They also wanted to utilise some classroom tech to create a more collaborative way of working and make it easier for students to share their work, and to see the work of others.
“Using Solstice has enabled us to add variety to our lectures and seminars. Students seem to appreciate the degree of interactivity it allows us to introduce. As lecturers, we are enjoying experimenting with it and have been pleased with the positive impact it is having on student engagement.”- Miriam Schwiening and Joanne Raynor (Warwick International Foundation Programme lecturers)
What was the challenge?
During lessons, students were required to analyse documents, highlighting text and making annotations. Traditionally this was done by printing out copies of the documents for each student and then making the annotations by hand. Towards the end of each lesson, students were encouraged to share their work with the class, usually by bringing it to the front and putting it under the visualiser. At the end of each lesson, students would be encouraged to hand their work in, leaving Miriam and Joanne with stacks of paper.
The challenge was: 'How can we reduce the requirement for paper printouts in this lesson?'.
How did they do it?
Working with the Learning Spaces and Collaborative Environments Team, they designed a digital workflow, allowing students to download and annotate their work on whichever device they feel most comfortable. They then used the Solstice device to wirelessly cast students work to the projector. As Solstice supports simultaneous users, students were able to log in and cast their own work to screen, either via their phone or laptop. Alternatively, Miriam and Joanne could walk around the room with their phone, casting good examples onto the screen. As multiple photos can be sent to the screen, the students' work could be critiqued side by side. At the end of the session, students can submit their work online, completely negating the requirement for paper printouts.
The University of Warwick opened the doors of The Oculus, its dedicated teaching and learning building, to the campus community in October of 2016. This flagship building deployed state-of-the-art technology in every learning space, including new sound systems, visualizers, and of course, Solstice as the wireless presentation system.
As students and instructors alike quickly discovered, Solstice is so much more than just a wireless presentation system. It does not just replace the cable that tethers a presenter to the front of the room – it acts as a true communication platform, accessible by any member of the classroom, from any device they brought with them.