Use of Distance Education Classrooms - For Students
Distance Education classrooms at Central Washington University have specialized features not found in other technology enhanced rooms on campus. If you are taking a Distance Education class, please carefully read over the following information, as it will assist you in the use of this classroom. The course in which you are enrolled is larger than the number of students you see around you. As many as five other classrooms may be connected together for this course. One of the classroom cameras will focus on you whenever you speak during discussions or question and answer periods. The camera at the instructor's workstation is available to you for making presentations. Please make sure that your documents and demonstration materials are compatible with this equipment. Our Distance Education operators are available to assist you with information and advice on the best ways to prepare your presentations.
Please let an operator know whenever you feel that your participation in this class is in any way being compromised by the technology. We are here to support your academic objectives.
- These classes are conducted by interactive television. Your participation is vital to your learning experience. Please speak up firmly. Any inhibitions you may feel about being on television will diminish and you will soon not even notice the cameras.
- Speak in a normal, but firm voice while sitting up in your chair. it is not necessary to raise your voice for the microphone to catch what you say. Please do not move the microphones as they are arranged for optimal classroom performance.
- When you ask a question, please raise your hand and identify yourself by stating your name and location. For example: "This is Mary in Ellensburg and my question is....." This allows the operator time to identify you and set the camera so that your classmates at other sites can see you. This is most important when the Instructor is at another site.
- Microphones serve the students at each distant site and for recording class periods. These microphones offer no assistance in hearing within your classroom. Your instructor may not hear side conversations if you are both in the same room; however they may be disruptive while being transmitted to the distant sites, and heard on the tape recordings.
- You may experience delays in hearing the voices of other class members at a distance site. This is a normal characteristic of the technical setup of the system. Please be courteous and patient during discussions. This gives everyone an equal opportunity to participate in the class.
- The Distance Education room you will be attending contains some of the newest and best classroom technology available today. Much of what you learn to use in this room could be of use to you in your chosen career.
- Each class session is video taped. With your Instructor's permission you can review any class period in the Media Circulation area of the University Library or at one of our off-campus Centers. You must sign a use log each time you watch a tape. This procedure allows DE Support to tally use of the materials. It is not a check on your attendance, so please sign in.
- Tape recording also takes place during all test periods. This ensures fairness for all, and quality checks on the system. In the event of discrepancies, the tapes are turned over to the instructor for analysis and further action.
- The desk-mounted microphones are sensitive to ambient noise. If books or papers are placed on top of the mics the sound at the other sites is amplified to distracting levels. For example: tapping a pencil on the desk sounds like a hammer at the distant sites. Please wait until the instructor dismisses class before you begin to pack up. A book bag zipper will drown out all other sounds going to the distant sites.
- NEVER disconnect the microphones or cables. This WILL damage system performance and may require their replacement. The operators have instructions to video tape any tampering. In the likelihood of damage, students caught on tape will be billed for repair costs.
- Because your class is part of a multi-classroom system, equipment requires a moment of time to identify the site and switch the video. Speaking too soon after someone else will cut off the conversation.
- If someone at a site is making noise, the effect will be to break the Instructor's presentation into fragments. This will make the content difficult to understand.
Distance Education has many unique benefits for your education. Your participation is the key to your success. If the system is not working properly, such as when you hear an echo or the sound from another site is too loud, immediately tell the operator at your site. This is the only individual who should make corrections or call for help. If you have any suggestions or questions about Distance Education or Video Conferencing please contact the Distance Education Support at 963-1221, stop by in person to visit, or send an email to one of our staff.
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