Cisco is presenting at Futurecom 2012 its Digital Classroom, an integrated solution based on a single device that provides connectivity, collaboration, computing and content-management capabilities so that teachers and students can access and share knowledge inside and outside school.
The new technology that makes the Digital Classroom possible is Cisco(TM) Edge 300 – an “all-in-one” device installed in the classroom that offers a Wi-Fi access point; local network connectivity; Bluetooth; an interactive digital whiteboard control; audio and video features (speakers, microphone, camera, video displays, keyboard etc.); videoconferencing, providing cost-effective and easy connections between expert teachers, students or remotely located groups.
To build the complete solution, Cisco has established a number of alliances with local companies to add application software, pedagogical content and classroom digital devices and be integrated with the Cisco Edge device. Examples of these value-added solution pieces include software from MSTech and Metasys and digital whiteboards, projectors and document cameras from Smart, Promethean and E-beam (Luidia). Other alliances continue to be developed in the areas of school-services management and learning-management systems.
The Digital Classroom solution is designed to integrate all digital devices inside a classroom with the school network and pedagogical content server, turning current technologies (computers, Internet, smartphones, digital whiteboards, videoconferencing, etc.) into an ally for teachers to improve the quality of the teaching and learning process.
“We expect the Digital Classroom solution to create a teaching and learning environment that goes beyond the physical borders of the school, enabling more effective pedagogic content access and selection; a collaborative learning platform for better interaction among students and teachers; remote based teachers can provide additional subject matter expertise and contribute – either live or pre-recorded – via web conferencing; among other applications. These are just a few examples where we see technology supporting quality for 21st-century education”, said Ricardo Santos, manager of education vertical at Cisco Brazil.
Cisco has partnered with educational institutions such as Senac Sao Paulo to explore the practical applications of Cisco Edge in classroom environments, and the goal is to continue creating partnerships with other institutions, to expand the possibilities of using technology to improve quality of teaching and learning processes.
The new solution is being showcased at Cisco’s Futurecom booth and will highlight the architecture both in an integrated environment within the local school network as well as in the cloud.