When people mention video conferencing, they mostly think of the business sphere. However, video call solutions are actively used in education today, which makes learning incredibly efficient and accessible. It is nearly impossible to imagine the modern educational process without online conferences. Most schools, colleges, and universities, as well as separate teachers and professors, benefit from digital conferencing solutions.
Thanks to the availability of such video conferencing platforms as Digitalsamba, teachers and scholars in different parts of the world can have easy access to education and receive their knowledge conveniently. In this article, you will find out about the main benefits of video conferences in education.
The Basics of Video Conferencing
First things first, what is video conferencing? It is a convenient modern way of communicating over the Internet. This type of call includes voice and video transmission in real-time. It is different from the classic video call solutions we already know because it has much wider functionality and accessibility. A video conference can be arranged between two, three, or a hundred people if necessary, and all of this is possible without compromising the quality.
With video conferences, people can communicate via a microphone or in a chat without interrupting the speaker. People can attach various types of files and share them with specific users or all of the listeners at the same time. A few speakers can have a discussion simultaneously, while all the others remain listeners. People can raise hands using the respective features to draw attention and ask for permission to speak. Teachers can pre-record their lectures and create a broadcast for their students, and more. There are countless possibilities with video conferencing.
Using Video Conferencing Software in Education
The versatility of video conferences is great for the educational process. It does not limit the professors to only live calls. Here are two main ways in which video call software is incorporated into education:
- Pre-recorded lectures – a teacher or a professor can record a full lecture in advance including the educational material, questions for the following lecture, requirements for the test, and more. While such a format does not allow communicating with the professor, all students can still talk in chat and discuss the lecture with one another. This is a great solution when teachers and professors are unable to be present at the lecture due to some circumstances.
- Live lectures – it is one of the greatest solutions for modern education as lecturers can have their classes live while each student joins the virtual classroom from their home or even on the go. Since everyone’s microphone can be muted, there is no chattering or distracting noise, and every student can hear the professor clearly. The teacher can ask specific students to unmute their mics to be able to answer a question or express their opinions. People that are unable to use voice chat can simply type down their answers or questions. A few different students can talk simultaneously, while the others listen to their discussion as well.
Both ways of using video conferences have their pros and cons and can be used in different cases if necessary.
The Benefits of Video Calls in Education
Video conferences are now actively used in the educational process thanks to their numerous benefits. Here are some of the great advantages of incorporating video calls into your routine:
- Interactivity – video conferences can be used not only for plain lectures but for an interactive experience between teachers and students as well. Professors can interact with their students in different ways, teachers can communicate with each other to share thoughts and ideas, students can divide into groups and work on projects, etc. It does not have to be a classic format of a teacher speaking and a few dozen students listening.
- Exchanging files –while e-mailing essays and other works to your professor has certain benefits, it is also often convenient to simply submit all the necessary files in one video chat. Modern video conference solutions allow sharing text documents, PowerPoint presentations, video clips, and more.
- Global communication – of course, the main idea is to create a digital space for classmates to be able to study together despite being at home or in other cities or even different countries. However, video conferencing software allows connecting all the students globally. It is possible to have shared lessons and lectures with students from other schools or different parts of the world to establish better communication and receive a unique experience.
- Connecting with the world – much like with classic lessons, there are a few ways of making virtual calls more engaging and fun. It is extremely simple to invite various speakers depending on your subject so they can join the call and share their experiences with the student. Next, it is possible to go on virtual field trips. A teacher can use a smartphone or tablet to bring the digital classroom with them anywhere they go. Alternatively, many museums, galleries, research centers, etc. offer virtual tours with guides, which means the whole virtual conference can be connected.
- Communicating with parents – it is always rather difficult to gather all the parents together or even have one family find time for chatting in person. Digital conferences allow talking to students’ parents conveniently at any time and from anywhere thanks to an Internet connection.
- Recording lessons – even if the lecture is not pre-recorded, it does not hurt to record a live conversation and use it in the future. Teachers might use it as a reference, and students can re-watch it if they have missed something.
Video conferencing software and tools do not require special training, and anyone can use them freely.