OIT Updates Technology in SMU Classrooms Over the Summer

Epson ScreenDuring the summer, the AV team tackled a large number of projects to refresh technology in over 116 classrooms.  The list of items was presented to the Academic Technology Council last spring after gathering input from the Schools on wish list items. Towards the end of the semester, six rooms were added and funding authorized to prototype new technology in conjunction with various pedagogical styles.

Work began in the rooms in the middle of June.  Our original scope to be completed this fiscal year was 135 line items.  By the start of school, 116 items were completed.  This was a tremendous effort in a very short period of time.  The remaining items are close to completion or have been rescheduled for Fall Break or Winter Break. To view the list of items and status, please see the Classroom AV Project List on Box.

Solstice

We added new Mersive Solstice devices to approximately 30 rooms to enable wireless screen sharing. Several rooms received new Epson interactive whiteboards/projectors.  Many of these were networked allowing the content to be emailed or students to connect to the whiteboard from their devices. We installed several new bulb-free laser projectors in the Cox School of Business rather than traditional projectors. These were chosen in part because of the difficulty to maintain projectors in those rooms due to the high ceilings. The response to these projectors has been very favorable, and we are identifying other areas where these would be a good fit.  Also, we programmed a large number of rooms to communicate with our centralized AV management solution.  We now have over 120 rooms across campus that we can proactively monitor and remotely resolve AV issues in addition to reporting utilization metrics for future planning.  Finally, all rooms were tested before the start of the semester to ensure they were ready for instruction.

Over the next two weeks, our focus will be completing the remaining punch list items and resolving any support issues with the new installations.  Based on our experiences this summer, we will make a few modifications to the process for allocating the AV Technology fund for next summer.  Two major obstacles delayed work significantly this summer: scheduling the rooms and purchasing the equipment.  To ensure that we can block off the rooms necessary next summer as well as receive the equipment in time, we will be finalizing the list of work by January 2018. More information will be forthcoming to ensure schools have ample time to provide feedback and their wish list items for future upgrades.

Published by

Rachel Mulry

Director of Customer Service-
Office of Information Technology