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Design technologies that can improve student experience in hybrid classes

These solutions use artificial intelligence (AI) to eliminate the image of the teacher so that students who are virtually can see the blackboard perfectly.

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Example of a hybrid class with students in virtual and others in person. Photo: Forward Teacher

The pandemic caused universities to teach their classes virtually, that is, through video calls made by Google Meet, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, among other platforms that are characterized by being easy to use and because they allow there to be an interaction between the teacher and students.

Although this global problem is not over yet, blended classes are about to become a reality. In 2022, there will be certain courses in which the student will have to physically attend a university classroom, while others can continue to be taken remotely.

Although this type of blendedness will be the most common in universities, there is a hybrid model that allows the same class to be taught both to students who are in the classroom and to students who are connected from home.

Juan Pablo Romero, Lumen’s unified communications manager, spoke with La República to discuss two technological solutions that will be very helpful for those universities that plan to teach this type of education.

According to the specialist, these tools called video collaboration and collaborative whiteboards use artificial intelligence to eliminate the image of the teacher so that students (who take classes from home) can see the blackboard clearly.

“Hybrid classes need the blackboard to be correctly visualized both by students who are physically in the classroom and by those who are remotely. If the teacher is in front of the blackboard, artificial intelligence will make it transparent so that the notes can be seen ”, he said.

It is worth noting that the students who are remotely would not need any virtual reality viewer or other expensive devices to benefit from these solutions, it is enough to have a device with internet connectivity, it can be a laptop, tablet, computer, etc.

One of the great difficulties of hybrid classes is the noise of the environment; however, the solution developed by Lumen has a microphone system that reduces ambient noise, since they only capture the human voice.

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Thanks To The Ai, The Teacher Will Disappear From The Blackboard And The Virtual Students Will See It Without Problems. Photo: Lumen

Main challenges and benefits of hybrid education

According to the expert, many universities do not opt ​​for hybrid classes because they do not have the budget to hire a technological solution; however, it highlights that the prices to implement these hybrid classrooms are no longer as expensive as before.

Another reason that hinders its implementation is that it represents a great challenge for teachers, who should not only be concerned about the students who are in front of them, but also those who are at home.

“The didactics changes drastically. One thing is to keep a group of people who are locally interested and involved in a class and another thing is that, while doing the same thing, to keep a student who is watching from a distance internalized and trapped,” he explained.

Among the advantages that a hybrid class brings is the breaking down of geographical barriers in education, since one could take courses at the university that one prefers, without worrying if one is away from home or not.

“The geographical barriers are much lower and the offer of the universities now has to be more attractive, because the audience they can capture is much larger than before,” Romero said.

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