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Hybrid and online learning: US higher education institutions speak out
Posted on Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Nov. 18, 2020  - As the new semester is underway, we asked three US higher education institutions to talk about the choices they made and how they are currently using hybrid and remote learning on a daily basis. Join Julie Shackleton of UC Berkeley Executive Education, Raymond G. Pryor of King's College Pennsylvania and Lance Beaumont of California Baptist University for a frank and lively overview of how higher education is finding new paths to engagement and online teaching!

Different parameters, the same needs

  • No matter what sector of education you are working in, most of today's educational institutions share a basic need: to make genuine connections with their students or participants. This ensures they receive the highest level of education and is the challenge most bodies have faced during lockdown. The speakers highlighted a number of aspects that change the way they work:
  • The level of engagement is vital to ensure remote learners do not feel alienated and therefore feel they are receiving a complete education, rather than second-best. Lance Beaumont highlighted the spatial aspect that allows teachers to interact directly with learners as close to a face-to-face as it possibly gets.
  • Ray Pryor explained his desire to get remote students "off the wall" and place them right in the midst of an in-room collaboration table. This proximity breaks down the barriers between remote and in-class participants.

The adoption rates seen by Julie Shackleton surprised her. "We were thinking, ‘Oh God, we're going to have empty rooms', but capacity was an issue almost immediately."

Making a business case for weConnect

The principles of hybrid and online learning are largely understood by now. But it is obviously important to ensure that the figures add up for everyone. Julie Shackleton noted that when they started studying the financial side of adopting weConnect, they rapidly decided to quadruple the number of units they would use.

The speed of getting up and running was also an important point for Lance Beaumont. As institutions – and indeed learners – adapt to a fast-moving environment, this can play an important role in maintaining high levels of tuition.

At King's College, they were concerned that the learners would have to upgrade their devices until Ray Pryor bought a $38 table from Toys R Us that connected seamlessly to weConnect. This also favors broad acceptance on the part of users.

Watch the webinar now

If you want to know how weConnect is adapting itself to three very different situations, check the highlights below (9'30") or watch the full discussion here.

A big thanks to our panel:

  • Julie Shackleton of UC Berkeley Executive Education
  • Raymond G. Pryor of King's College Pennsylvania
  • Lance Beaumont of California Baptist University
  • and our host: Jim Copeland, Director of Sales, Learning and Education Solutions, Barco, North America.
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