How to become the ‘University of the Future’
The Erasmus University Rotterdam is, with over 31.000 students in 2018, one of the biggest universities of the Netherlands. It has consistently been in the top 3% of the most important rankings of the world. Since 2012 the number of learning spaces has grown from 225 to almost 400 lecture and meeting rooms.
The Erasmus University Rotterdam has formulated a clear vision on where the field of education is heading and which requirements need to be fulfilled to become the ‘University of the Future’. The university understands that both in the academic curriculum and the support organisation the right professionals need in to be in the right place.
More and more globalisation and the accompanying race to find the ‘best student’ and in turn ‘the best teacher’ adds to the need to review the vision and strategy of all higher education institutions. Next to his, digitalisation is a necessary step to ensure the digital learning transformation of the students and teachers is facilitated in an optimal fashion.
At the Erasmus university the right early adapters were in place to, together with Kinly, evolve the traditional one-way lecture method to more didactically rigorous and more successful ways of teaching. The digitalisation strategy of the university has truly led to a full digital learning transformation.
Lecture halls and solutions based on tried and true standards
Kinly’s experience in education, based on a large number of customers’ relationships within higher education, has made for new insights in standardisation of lecture halls and the equipment used to facilitate the demanding requirements of lecturers, staff and students. Together with Erasmus, Kinly has developed a number of these standards, facilitating the lecture halls.
This includes scheduled recordings, on demand recording tools - both hardware and software - and live collaboration tools that are being used on a daily basis.
In the Erasmus case that included consolidating towards one video platform provider Panopto instead of multiple solutions used in the past. This means that all recordings and live interactions in these lecture halls are uploaded to the platform, resulting in optimal searchability and easy integration with the university’s standard learning management system.
Brand new education lab for staff to get together and work on educational innovation and online education
To facilitate the major changes digitalisation demands from lecturers, students and supporting staff alike, the university has created a central hub on campus for these groups to work together on educational innovation. To transition from the traditional classroom lectures to online education for example is a major change both on the curriculum side as well as on the lecturer/student side. Together with Kinly, the university decided to build a brand new studio based on IP technology that is flexible enough to facilitate new ways of video lectures such as lecture clips used in addition to inclass lectures, talk shows on latest research or online classes. Besides, the studio has high enough quality to be able to share production material internationally (e.g. *MOOC’s or *SPOC’s) . The project involved much more than simply installing cameras and AV technology, and required intensive collaboration with sub-suppliers regarding the physical placement of the studio environment and the design of the technology.
It also included providing and co-developing a suitable cloud-based production environment Beats by Kinly in which teachers can prepare their material and distribute it to their students. The technical director that guides the lecturers and staff through these recordings and operates the broadcast equipment is also provided, trained and outsourced directly by Kinly. Of the selected three system integrators within EUR’s framework agreement, none had experience with designing and furnishing a complete recording studio from A to Z. EUR considers a pleasant collaboration in which client, system integrator and manufacturer understand each other as key for the success of innovative projects like this one.
Next to the managed production studio, Kinly also provided and co-developed two ‘do-it-yourself’ studios in the education lab. Lecturers, students and other staff can easily and intuitively prepare their material in the cloud (on site or at home), to end up running through their entire recording in the recording booth with only the use of a single button. This results in high quality material with faculty based intro-outro design, nametags, visuals added to green screen backgrounds etc. The do-it-yourself principle makes lead time on video production optimal and the material is of a high enough quality to share with thousands of students or presented in scientific conventions.
The hardware equipment and software of the do-it-yourself studios was developed and coordinated by Kinly in close cooperation with well-known suppliers like Webclip2go and EUMEDIANET. The resulting platform Beats by Kinly manages both the environment lecturers and staff work in to prepare their material next to adding the right metadata, storage, distribution (to Erasmus videoplatform provider and Kinly partner Panopto) and archiving raw material.
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