Have you been experimenting with video and audio setups for making lecture content for classes this year? Have you been finding new ways to interact with your students in live online classes? Have you tried different video editing systems?
Along with other Campus challenges, the Covid-19 curveball has disrupted normal teaching practice. With some hope in sight, it seems we are beginning to envision the ‘new’ normal that comes about through resilient adaptation. In the new ‘normal’ world, of which we so often speak, our existing technologies will undergo innovation, enhancing reimagined teaching and learning environments. As the shadow of Covid-19 recedes it will be interesting to see what emerges from the creative spirit of educational designers and developers as well as academics.
To highlight these innovations, a Community of Practice (CoP) has been established by the Learning Spaces Operational Group (LSOG). In this context, LSOG, an informal group spanning several service divisions, meets weekly to ensure that venue and equipment needs are met with the focus on enabling teaching. This group was very active in responding to the Covid-19 crisis, working with room occupancy ratings, Covid-safe plans, Dual Delivery technology, massive changes to how the timetable worked and provision of on-campus seats for remote exams, to name just a few. Now LSOG would like to learn from practitioners in the field.
As academics, support staff and education enthusiasts, who have shared an extraordinary year, we can all learn from our diverse experiences. A Community of Practice (CoP) is a melting pot for innovation that builds enthusiasm around common interests. LSOG conceived the AV Innovators Network (AVIN), a CoP which would bear witness to all things ‘AV’ in the educational environment of ANU, particularly focused on transition from enabling learning, as was required for the Covid-19 shutdown, to enhancing learning in our new normal.
The notion of AV began in the 1950s and referred mainly to Audio-Visual technologies associated with Television and Radio, a high point being the introduction of a television service for the Melbourne Olympic games. Technology has developed tremendously since then and in the contemporary context of ANU, AV is notably a complex mix of hardware, software, spaces, and their integration; including but not limited to:
- Video production
- Collaboration systems
- Presentation tools including visualisers and digital screens
- Virtual/Augmented Reality
- Digital recording tools (microphones and cameras)
- Podcasting and audio recording
Mission of the AV Innovators Network
The aim of the AV Innovators Network is to bring together ANU staff who have an interest in AV and its application to enhance learning. Whether you are an expert user and wish to share your experiences and explore good practice, or you are a new tech enthusiast and want to learn from others in the field, this space will provide opportunities to ask for advice and thrash out new ideas.
The ANU AV Team will be part of Community of Practice and join in its conversations as a font of knowledge on existing ANU AV systems and how they may be re-tasked to bring new ideas to life. Plausible ideas for improvements and advances in ANU AV systems will be discussed and if/when viable they’ll be supported through strategic, design and investment channels.
The AV Innovators Network will function at its best when the membership is broadly based; having ANU staff with professional and/or academic backgrounds, commonly interested in AV innovations and willing to participate on voluntary terms that accord with our freshly minted Charter.
Article published December 2020
Liane Joubert is a Learning Environment Officer in the Education Communities and Environments (ECE) team – one of the three teams within the ANU Centre for Learning & Teaching (CLT)