AV solutions in education in 2019

Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) returns to Amsterdam in February 2019, allowing educators to share best practice around AV solutions

AV technology is a key enabler of superior learning outcomes for every educational institution. In a fast-moving environment, staying abreast of what’s possible today, and what will be possible tomorrow, is essential.

Fundamental principle

That fundamental principle of achieving superior student achievement through engagement has remained at the heart of technology developments. Inevitably, education is taking its cue from how corporate organisations are deploying new audiovisual (AV) solutions. The ‘huddle room’ is a prime example.

“Fixed AV is still being installed into traditional higher education spaces, but increasingly we’re being asked for moveable interactive touchscreens located in smaller meeting rooms and break-out areas,” says Ashley Helm, Business Development Manager for Clevertouch at AV solutions provider Sahara.

Large flat screens have become increasingly commonplace in education, being installed in environments where previously the projector ruled. They became popular for their lower cost of ownership, environmental friendliness and ease of installation, but the projector market has moved on considerably since.

“Lamp-free projection is becoming the norm, particularly in the mid to high-end market,” says Alan Garratt, Senior National Account Manager at Casio UK. “Good green credentials are also becoming more of a must-have rather than a nice-to-have.”

Important advantages

As Trevor Maloney, Product Manager Visual Instruments at Epson UK points out, projectors can still have important advantages: “Projection continues to demonstrate steady demand from the education sector,” he says. “Classrooms still use flat panel displays, which are too small to give students optimum readability; our research shows that 61% of students in an average sized classroom can’t read content on even a 70” display.”

But if the screen or display is typically the focal point of a learning environment, it’s networking that becomes the key enabler of what’s possible – and that too is seeing rapid development.

AV technology is a key enabler of superior learning outcomes for every educational institution. In a fast-moving environment, staying abreast of what’s possible today, and what will be possible tomorrow, is essential.

“There is increasing demand for flexible AV over IP technology to equip new learning spaces in universities,” believes Julien Bussell, International Sales Manager at WolfVision. “These learning spaces comprise multiple workstations and screens where students sit together in small groups, working together, and moving content freely between the different screens in the room.”

Bussell also sees growing use of wireless technology as the BYOD (bring your own device) phenomenon becomes more widespread in secondary and higher education.

Mission critical

It could be said that audiovisual technology has become no less mission critical for educators than it is for other industries. That’s why over 80,000 AV professionals headed to the RAI exhibition centre in Amsterdam for Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) 2018, the world’s largest trade show of its type.

ISE also provides leading conferences and professional development. Show co-owner AVIXA has teamed up with the SCHOMS community for professionals working within UK higher education, and the European University Information Systems organisation (Eunis), to deliver a higher education AV conference. On 5th February, the What’s Next…Higher Education Integrated Experiences Design half-day conference will feature sessions discussing classroom design, the implementation of AV/IT systems, and exemplar use cases from around the world.

“It’s critical that specifiers in education do their research before they make a decision,” adds Helm.  “Get it wrong, and it will cost more than just the cost of the equipment; it will have a long-term impact on an institution’s ability to meet its teaching requirements and the demands of its digital savvy customers. That opportunity for research is what ISE is all about.”

Real attraction

ISE provides the opportunity to look beyond the school walls to see how other organisations are taking advantage of the newest AV developments.

“It’s a chance for those responsible for procurement in educational institutions to get to know the technology that will define their roadmap and fit their specific needs,” says Holger Graeff, General Manager of Vivitek EMEA. “More importantly, it will help their students to achieve the most out of the learning experience that the institution provides.”

ISE 2019 takes place from 5-8 February. To find out more, visit www.iseurope.org.