Professor Martin Zinke-Allmang's first-year Physics class has changed drastically over the last five years. It's not the content of his lectures. It's not the room, his lecture style or even the students. It's the accessibility of the lesson that's come a long way, thanks to new software [Blackboard Collaborate] and help from Information Technology Services (ITS) at Western.
In another lifetime, University of Western Ontario Psychology professor Mike Atkinson would be teaching his classes on a beach on Bora Bora Island. Although this is not quite his reality, Atkinson is able to indulge his academic fantasy in Second Life.
The solution came in the form of Wimba Live Classroom, an interactive online education application accessed through WebCT Owl, which allows teaching assistants to conduct real-time virtual tutorials. And, the two teaching assistants don't even have to be in the same room during the tutorial.