Lots of HSS Rooms Refreshed

Clockwise from top left, 2333A, 2305B, 1128B, 1138

Clockwise from top left: HSS 2333A, 2305B, 1128B, 1138

Most of the Classroom Refresh Project in Fall Quarter 2014 took place in the Humanities & Social Science building (HSS). Five different rooms were refreshed:

  • HSS 1128B
  • HSS 1138
  • HSS 2305B
  • HSS 2333A
  • HSS 2333B

All rooms now have a touch screen control panel. This intuitive interface brings lighting options, media inputs, and volume controls together in one place. Watch a video demonstration of the touch screen control panel in action.

New brighter, more energy-efficient projectors were installed. The increased brightness makes it easier for students to see the projected media.

The refresh also included the creation of new lighting configurations. Instead of only being able to turn all lights on or off, faculty can select from a spectrum of light levels to choose the one that is right for the situation. Lighting options include presentation mode, which turns off lights in the front of the room but keeps lights on in the rest of the room. This is ideal for class situations where slides are being projected in the front of the room and students require light to take notes.

A document camera has been installed in the ceiling of each room. The camera replaces the overhead transparency projector, which could only project special transparencies. Instead, the document camera can project anything on the screen that is placed beneath it. Courses that sign up for screencasting through podcast.ucsd.edu will have document camera images included in their recordings.

Each room was cleaned after being refreshed.

Watch for more refreshed rooms in Spring Quarter 2015!

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

McGil 2315 is Awesome

McGil Hall 2315This fall, the Classroom Refresh Project entered its fourth year of improving classrooms across UC San Diego. McGill 2315 was the first room of the quarter to be refreshed.

All refreshed classrooms have a touch screen control panel. The intuitive interface makes it easy for faculty to select the media input, adjust the volume, and select the lighting level. HDMI and VGA connection cables make it easy for faculty to connect their laptops to the presentation equipment.

New lighting options were added to McGill 2315. Faculty can select the right amount of light for any situation instead of being forced to turn all of the lights on or off.

An energy-efficient projector is installed in the classroom. This projector is also brighter, which makes it easier to see the projection.

The room was thoroughly cleaned to get it ready for courses after refresh work was completed.

The Classroom Refresh Project will continue throughout the 2014-15 academic year. To find all refreshed rooms, visit the Classroom Details page and select the Search tab. Choose Refreshed from the dropdown menu.

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

The Revamped Center Hall 214

Center 214

Before Fall Quarter 2014 began, one more lecture hall was refreshed as part of the Lecture Hall Refresh Project. Center Hall 214 was the lucky room to get the latest technology.

The hallmark of a refreshed lecture hall is the touchscreen control panel, located in the lectern at the front of the hall. The panel brings together several control systems including lights, volume, and media input selection. Faculty now have all audiovisual elements in one place.

Among the controls now at instructors’ fingertips are the new lighting zones. Center 214 has been rewired to provide several different lighting configurations. One of the most popular is Presentation mode. This turns off lights in the front of the room, but keeps them on above the seats. This decreases light on the projection screen to allow projected material be easily seen while still giving students sufficient light to take notes.

To further improve students’ ability to view lecture slides and other projected media, a new digital projector was installed in Center 214. This projector is both brighter and more energy-efficient than the previous model.

One of the inputs for the projector is the document camera, found in a drawer on the side of the lectern. The document camera projects anything placed beneath it. It replaces the transparency projector that required special sheets and pens to use. Try using handwritten notes or photos with the document camera.

With the fall quarter now underway, the Refresh Project will return to classrooms. Check back for the updates on newly refreshed rooms as they happen.

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

Center 216 Is Tricked Out

Center 216Summer 2014 saw the Lecture Hall Refresh Project finish up at Center Hall. Center 216 was the first of two lecture halls in the building to receive media equipment improvements this summer.

Previously, audiovisual controls were scattered throughout the hall. As part of the refresh, all of these elements are brought together in Center 216’s new lectern. Faculty can control lights and media inputs from the touch screen panel installed in the lectern and conveniently access the DVD/VHS player located in the lectern. Laptop connections, including an HDMI cable, are provided as well.

One of the nifty features of the lectern is the document camera, found in a drawer on the right side. Everything placed beneath the camera can be shown through the projector so the entire class can see. For example, faculty can place (or even create!) handwritten notes or diagrams beneath the camera instead of doing them on the chalkboard.

A new, energy-efficient projector was also installed in Center 216. It is brighter, making it easier for students to see the image. The lecture hall also has new lighting options. The most helpful when using the projector is the presentation option. This turns off lights at the front of the room while leaving other lights on to facilitate student note taking.

The next time you visit Center 216, check out these great new features for yourself!

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

HSS 1330 is the Latest Refreshed Lecture Hall

HSS 1330Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) 1330 is the second lecture hall this summer to be refreshed with new audiovisual equipment.

Central to the refresh is the new projector. It is brighter and more energy efficient than the model previous installed in HSS 1330. Not only will this projector make it easier for students to see slides and other projected media, but it will also contribute to UC San Diego’s sustainability efforts.

One of the devices that can be displayed by the projector is the document camera. Anything placed underneath the document camera is projected for the entire class to see. All of these projected images are included if faculty sign their course up for screencasting as part of UC San Diego’s podcasting service.

All of the projection inputs are selected through the touch screen control panel installed in the lectern. This control panel brings together media input, lighting, and sound controls in one place for the convenience of faculty.

The lighting options are also an addition to the lecture hall. HSS 1330’s lights have been programmed with several configurations that allow faculty to choose the right amount of light for class activities. Low lighting is available for showing video in class. Bright lighting is available for class discussions. Dimmed lighting in the front of the room and full lighting in seating areas can be used for showing lecture slides.

As in every refreshed classroom, HSS 1330 was cleaned after the completion of installation work.

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

ACMS Aces: Kris Formica

Kris FormicaUC San Diego has more than 100 general assignment classrooms and lecture halls. Each of these rooms is outfitted with audiovisual (AV) equipment that enhances learning. This equipment is maintained, supported, and refreshed by members of the Classroom Technology Support team. Kris Formica, Principal Electronics Technician, is part of this expert team.

“We oversee the installation and upgrade of all the technology in all the [general assignment] classrooms and lecture halls on campus,” Kris said. “We’re responsible for making sure they’re operating and functioning at all times.” Accordingly, Kris is involved in the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project. The project replaces outdated AV equipment in general assignment lecture halls and classrooms with up-to-date equipment. Kris builds the racks that hold new equipment and programs the touchscreen panels added to rooms as part of the refresh project. Kris also uses his skills to perform AV installations for departments, upgrading meeting rooms and other presentation spaces. One notable project that Kris recently worked on was to program the Prebys Music Center’s AV system so it can be controlled by iPads instead of relying solely on the booth controls.

Sometimes AV issues with classroom equipment can be complex. To decrease interruptions during classes, Kris has an audiovisual equipment setup in his office that is identical to the equipment deployed in refreshed classrooms across campus, which allows him to “recreate almost any situation.” Working on these issues remotely allows Kris to troubleshoot problems without interrupting lecture or having to squeeze his work in during the break between classes. He can also swap out a piece of equipment that is not working properly with one from his office so classes can proceed as normal while he fixes the equipment in his office. Kris also uses the AV equipment in his office to test out new ideas without interrupting classroom use.

Kris is an extensive reader of classic literature. He recently read The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and is currently working his way through Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess and A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole are among his favorite books.

Before coming to UC San Diego, Kris once worked in the kitchen of a comedy club that served dinner to guests before the start of the shows. “It was the East Coast/New York circuit for comedians so we had some huge headliners,” he said. Kris still enjoys cooking even if he no longer does so professionally.

Thank you, Kris, for everything you do to keep the media equipment in UC San Diego’s classrooms and lecture halls in top condition!

ACMS Aces is a series of articles that highlights the dedicated employees of Academic Computing & Media Services at UC San Diego. Keep checking back to find out more about the people behind the magic at ACMS!

Updated Classroom Details Page

Solis 104The Classroom Details page is a valuable tool for faculty and TAs at UC San Diego to learn what equipment is available in general assignment lecture halls and classrooms across campus. The page has recently been updated to reflect the progress of the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project and reorganized for easier use.

Most notably, new room attributes are listed for lecture halls and classrooms. Chalkboard & projector use can now be listed as “limited” for configurations where the projection screen covers some, but not all, of the chalkboard. Additionally, rooms are no longer limited to listing only one lectern type. Some rooms have both a free standing lectern and a tabletop lectern and previously displayed only one lectern configuration.

Links were added for resources that must be requested in advance, such as podcasting and screencasting, assisted listening devices, and wired microphones.

Classroom information was recently updated for all classrooms to reflect the progress of the Lecture Hall and Classroom Refresh Project. Updates will continue as more rooms are refreshed. More information about the project can be found in this video.

The Classroom Details page is a joint effort between Facilities Information Systems (FIS) and Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS). If you have suggestions on how the page can be improved, please email classroom-support@ucsd.edu.

Peterson 104 Starts Summer Refreshes

Peterson 104The Classroom Technology Support unit in Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) stays particularly busy during the summer as the Classroom Refresh Project continues. Peterson 104 is the first classroom to be refreshed this summer.

The 75 seat classroom has two modern projectors, which display a brighter and clearer picture. The projectors use less energy than their predecessors and are part of UC San Diego’s efforts to achieve a sustainable campus. New projection screens were also installed during the refresh. One projector is used to display media from the DVD/VCR player or laptop and the other is used in overflow situations in conjunction with Peterson 110.

Peterson 104 now includes a touchscreen control panel that makes it easy for faculty to control audiovisual inputs, lights, and media volume all at once. Among the new features are several different preset lighting levels that allow faculty to choose just the right amount of light. This includes presentation mode, which turns off lights in the front of the room while keeping lights on above the seats so students can take notes. Wired connections for HDMI and VGA are available on the wall to make it easy for faculty to connect their laptops to the projector.

The classroom also features a document camera installed in the ceiling. This handy camera replaces the overhead transparency projector. Faculty can still write by hand underneath the document camera, but without having to use costly transparencies and special pens. Other items, like photos, can be placed beneath the document camera, allowing everyone in the lecture hall to see them in detail through the projector. Everything projected by the document camera is also captured by ACMS’s screencasting service that can be set up by faculty in advance of class.

After all of the new equipment was installed, Peterson 104 received a full cleaning to ensure the hall is ready for faculty and students to use.

ACMS is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

HSS 2305A: The Final Refreshed Room of Spring 2014

HSS 2305AThe Classroom Refresh Project wrapped up for Spring Quarter 2014 with Humanities & Social Sciences (HSS) 2305A, which is ready to go for summer session classes.

From the first moment you step into HSS 2305A, the benefit of the refresh is apparent through the new lighting options. Rather than a simple on-off switch, HSS 2305A now features a number of choices that give the right amount of lighting for the circumstances. Ever been frustrated that darkening the room to see projected material meant that all the lights had to be turned off making the rest of the room too dark? Lights at the front of the room near the projection screen can now be turned off independently from the rest of the room. Intermediate light levels also allow occupants to supplement the room’s natural lighting and reduce energy consumption.

Another energy efficient feature of HSS 2305A is the new projector installed in the room. Not only does the projector use less energy than the previous model, but it is also brighter. This makes it easier for students to see slides, images, websites, and other projected media on the new projection screen.

One of the things that can be projected is images or objects through the document camera installed in the ceiling of HSS 2305A. Faculty no longer need to purchase transparencies and special pens to project notes for the entire class. Instead, they can write by hand with pen and paper underneath the document camera and the whole room can see.

A VHS/DVD/Blu-ray player was also installed as part of the classroom refresh.

The lights, media inputs, and media volume are controlled by a touch screen control panel installed in the front of the room. This single point of control makes it easy for faculty to control all of the audiovisual elements in the room during class with minimal interruption of instruction.

After the room was refreshed, Facilities Management gave the room a full cleaning to make sure that it shines and sparkles for its occupants.

During the summer, Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS Blog) will refresh five lecture halls to be ready for the start of the 2014-2015 academic year, including HSS 1330. Keep checking in with the ACMS Blog over the summer to see the lecture halls as they get refreshed.

ACMS is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom and Lecture Hall Refresh Project:

The New HSS 2152

HSS 2152The Classroom Refresh Project is a five year project that improves general assignment classrooms across UC San Diego. The latest classroom to benefit from the project is Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) 2152.

Every refreshed classroom has a new touch screen control panel. The natural interface makes it easy to manage the classroom’s audiovisual equipment. Users can switch between projector inputs, control the room lights, and adjust speaker audio levels using the touch panel.

HSS 2152 has a new, brighter projector that makes it easier to see images and slides. The projector is also more energy efficient than the previous model, reducing UC San Diego’s energy footprint.

The room’s overhead transparency projector was replaced by a document camera mounted in the ceiling. This technology is more versatile, allowing faculty to project any object, not just transparencies, so the entire room can see.

Reprogrammed room lights now give faculty several options for illuminating the classroom. Instead of just turning all the lights on or off, the new configurations let faculty choose the right amount of light for each situation.

Facilities Management gave HSS 2152 a full cleaning at the conclusion of the installations to ensure students and faculty have a fresh learning environment from the very first day of classes.

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is proud to raise the quality of classrooms and lecture halls throughout campus through the Classroom Refresh Project in conjunction with Administrative Computing & Telecommunications (ACT) and Facilities Management.

More information about the Classroom Refresh Project: