Technology can’t fully replace in-person teaching, but it is already becoming an effective means of delivering content and retaining students’ attention. Physical presence is no longer a requirement if a professor can stand in front of students in full body format from a different city or even country.
“Over the year of the pandemic restrictions and even before them, we experimented a lot with hybrid formats, combining real and virtual spaces. At first it seemed impossible to recreate the convenience of the classic format of lecture theatre work. But we found a solution: if a lecturer is standing in front of the camera in their “home studio” and their whole body is visible, then after editing their image can be projected onto the wall of a lecture theatre just like a full holographic projection. This makes the feeling of presence much stronger than just a classic ‘talking head on a screen’. The projection becomes a window allowing the lecture theatre to continue outside its walls, and even into the studio of a lecturer in another country,” said SKOLKOVO’s Digital Transformation and Innovations Director Anatoly Stoyanovsky.
He also said that the School will continue to actively improve its new educational experience by collecting feedback from students.
“We have already started giving pilot lectures in this format, with the first one taking place on our EMBA programme today. There is still lots to be done to ensure maximum student engagement, but we can see this effect already,” Stoyanovsky explained.
He added that the standard anticrisis format used by educational organisations around the world during lockdowns cannot be called effective.
“When you have a professor just sitting in front of their laptop at home and giving a lecture on Zoom to a screen in the lecture theatre, the contact with the audience is bad, there is almost no feedback and energy is lost. We never liked this approach - it’s too basic and widespread. The new solution we created through our experiments is optimal for everyday use. We also have a lot of ideas for developing this format further, especially for collaborative work between lecturers on campus with an online audience,” Stoyanovsky pointed out.