In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, many educational institutions have struggled to find ways to provide effective distance learning methods. One of the most useful tools available for remote teaching is Internet Protocol TV (IPTV). Most commonly used in the entertainment sector, educators are discovering its effectiveness in providing remote learning for campuses worldwide. IPTV can effectively deliver live or recorded lectures to students, providing educational institutions with an affordable tool that works across multiple devices and platforms.
What is IPTV?
Internet Protocol television (IPTV) delivers television and digital signage services via an Internet protocol suite as opposed to a traditional RF coax. As a result, it provides a very cost-effective, flexible, and highly interactive option ideally suited for distance learning. It can be used in various ways including:
- Time-shifted television, DVR, or Personal Video Recorder (PVR): This allows educators to pre-record lectures or tutorials so students can access it to suit their schedules. It is an excellent option for educators as students can use start-over TV to watch a live lecture from the beginning or replay areas where they wish to take more intense notes.
- Video on demand (VOD): Institutions can create a catalog of videos from internal libraries with suitable content for each department.
- Digital Signage: Signage can be fully integrated with an IPTV system for on-campus communication and advertising.
All video and television signals can be viewed from any device available to students including Desktop PCs and MACs, Smartphones, Tablets, Smart TVs, Set-top boxes, TVs, Displays, and more.
How Can IPTV Be Used In Education?
The IPTV platform can be used in different ways and designed to suit the needs of the educator or student. Whether it is traditional online lectures, tutorials or fact-based programming, or 3D lectures to provide a more realistic “being there” experience, remote teaching can adapt usage to suit educators’ needs in a manner that will best benefit their students. In fact, 3D technology provides an excellent opportunity to show dynamic lectures that more effectively explain complex structures.
Examples of IPTV Applications in Schools
With the uncertainty posed by social distancing needs, many universities are looking for ways to cut costs while still delivering highly effective learning experiences to their students. Using IP video communication technologies allows universities and schools of all levels to eliminate the need for RF Coax to cut costs without sacrificing the quality of lecture delivery and communication. Schools can introduce remote learning including:
- E-Learning: This would include remote programs, live classroom video, and digital library access providing students with the ability to attend classes from their computers. Many students appreciate the advantage of attending classes or watching lectures to suit their schedules through recorded sessions. This also works well for international students with vastly different time zones. Even in normal situations, schools can avoid over-crowded classrooms, so that higher education becomes available for many new students. With the use of cameras and video over an IP distribution system, amphitheaters can reach any student, sharing high-quality video across many affiliated facilities, or to remote students around the world.
- IPTV for Campus & Dorms: Competition for students requires innovative ideas to attract them to campus. Creating an integrated university channel with Video-on-Demand entertainment provides a unique aspect to campus life that can make your school more attractive to a broader selection of students. This translates into profitability with improved enrollment numbers.
- Digital Signage: On-campus digital signage allows schools to communicate with students effectively, while also leveraging advertising dollars with local businesses. They can also be used to announce outbreaks during difficult times like those faced with the pandemic, so students understand which areas of the campus are locked down or unavailable.
- Faculty Video Networking: Video Networking & IPTV Distribution Systems provide a productive option to stream both live and recorded video to keep faculty up to date on information that is crucial to their roles and to help them perform their duties more effectively. It also provides connectivity for live information dissemination and video conferencing to improve faculty networking.
- 3D: As mentioned above, 3D offers a unique learning opportunity using training simulators. This has become of particular interest to medical faculties but can be applied in any case where 3D optics help enhance the learning experience.
IPTV can positively impact remote and traditional education, in support of or in lieu of campus-centric learning models. Remote learning provides access to a wider community and a larger number of students. Even those in lower socio-economic groups can access a higher level of education as costs associated with living abroad can be greatly reduced thanks to web-based tools and IPTV.
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