Echo360 Helps University of Toledo Expand Online and Hybrid Learning

In the third and final webinar of our hybrid and online learning series in 2020, a panel of experts from the University of Toledo shared their experiences on how the university is using Echo360 and other technology to expand online and hybrid learning in response to COVID-19.

The webinar was led by Melissa Gleckler, an educational technologist and PhD candidate at the University. She presented a number of best practices to provide professional development that can assist instructors with technology, many of whom may be teaching online for the first time. These practices provide a roadmap for other institutions to follow.

Echo360 Reliably Scales to Meet Exponential Growth

Gleckler stated that like most institutions, the University moved to online learning only in March. Moving forward, academic leaders and administrators wanted to have greater flexibility in the way teaching could be delivered. By the Fall 2020 term, the University had the necessary technology in place so that all classes could be presented in-person, online, or via a hybrid learning model. Technology included Blackboard Collaborate for web conferencing, Echo360 for video learning and student engagement, and various tools for test authoring and proctoring.

To ensure that every lecture and presentation was recorded, the university equipped every general-purpose classroom with Echo360 Universal Capture. Every class is now automatically recorded in 170 learning spaces. Instructors merely have to enter the room and teach. This led to a dramatic increase in the number of videos recorded in Echo360 and other uses of the platform compared to the previous year. Echo360 was able to reliably scale to accommodate the exponential growth in new users and to meet the unprecedented demand for video.

“We have nearly doubled the number of users on the system,” says Gleckler. “Classroom captures and video views have increased by nearly 7 times and polling responses have more than doubled. Throughout it all, Echo360 has constantly grown with us as we ramped up from the Spring to the Fall term.”

August 2019 August 2020
Classroom Captures 318 2,134

40 live

Number of Users 7,120 13,347
Video Views 9,387 66,425
Polling Responses 3,829 9,081

Technology Helps Turn Adversity into an Advantage

Joining Gleckler on the webinar were two University of Toledo instructors who shared how Echo360 helped them keep students engaged during online learning.

Before the pandemic hit, Dr. Holly Myers who teaches in the University’s nursing program, only taught her classes in person. Now, she records her lectures with Echo360 and uses its student engagement features to assess student learning and understanding. She analyzes how students respond to her questions and this helps her adjust and tailor her classes to meet the needs of her students. Echo360 polling questions help her bridge the gap between what she is teaching and what her students are learning.

Raymond Jackson, an adjunct professor at the University who teaches an introductory communications course is one of the hundreds of new Echo360 users Gleckler and her team trained. He described how his students now are able to record and submit video presentations using Echo360. These student-created videos serve as a video-based assessment— student presentations that had previously only been done in a physical classroom are now being done online with Echo360.

“As we prepared for the Fall term, over 200 instructors completed our online teaching certificate course,” says Gleckler. “To help both students and faculty prepare for the term, we created virtual orientations using Blackboard and Echo360. We also streamlined help-desk processes to speed up technical consultation with faculty members when they requested it. Echo360 is vital component of our capability to deliver an effective and engaging online and hybrid teaching and learning experience. It’s helped us turn adversity into an advantage.”

These are just some of the highlights from the webinar and we invite you to watch the recording. The presentation is full of recommendations on how to help your faculty effectively transition from in-person to online and hybrid instruction.

View the webinar, Mobilizing Remote Learning in Traditional Teaching.

Learn more: From campus video management, lecture capture, online and hybrid learning and more, contact us to discover how Echo360 can help transform the teaching and learning experience at your institution.

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