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Using Classroom AV to Socialize a Lecture Hall
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About this session:

Active learning classrooms are beginning to have a noticeable, if limited, presence on many college campuses. To date, most active learning renovations have focused on smaller and mid- sized classrooms with flat surface profiles. Perhaps nowhere is the need for interaction more pressing, however, than in sloping lecture halls where compact fixed seating constrains small group work and limits faculty interaction with students.

Technology often ends up amplifying the prevailing design principles of a classroom. In a traditional lecture hall, the primary role of classroom AV is to support the presentation of information from one (the instructor) to many (students). Classroom seating solutions are designed to maximize efficiency and are configured to face one direction. AV implementations in these learning spaces usually achieve their goals in broad strokes, with limited opportunities for innovation. BYOD solutions such as clickers and other class response systems are examples of technologies being used to help mitigate physical constraints to interaction.

A growing number of lectures halls are being renovated around a new set of design goals: Student interaction and sustained eye contact, the ability of instructors to interact directly with every student, and seamless transitions between lecture, small group work, and full class discussion. The AV designs required to support these goals present both new challenges and opportunities.

Representatives from UNC-Chapel Hill will present the results of an interactive lecture hall renovation that went online in fall 2015. Attendees will learn how constraints associated with this classroom were addressed to align with the instructional goals of the renovation.

The presenter will share the findings of the pilot study that features student and instructor attitudes about technologies and other classroom features. This presentation will include opportunities for participants to address common design challenges as a group.

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About the presenter:

Bob Henshaw, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Bob Henshaw is an instructional technology consultant who works with faculty members and academic units to plan, implement, and evaluate the use of innovative teaching methods and instructional technologies. He serves as staff liaison between the Center for Faculty Excellence and the Teaching and Learning division of Information Technology Services at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Bob has taught both undergraduate and graduate courses at UNC-Chapel Hill, and has over twenty years of experience supporting faculty members and campus initiatives across a wide range of topics related to instructional innovation. Recent areas of interest include large course redesign and active learning classrooms.