In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting changes in academic structure, the Utah State Classroom Technology Team spent the summer preparing over 180 classrooms for hybrid teaching.
After campus was closed in March, the six-member Classroom Technology Team purchased and installed high-definition cameras and microphones in classrooms, equipping faculty members to teach their classes in person and online through Zoom. Additionally, the equipment will allow faculty to record their lectures for students unable to participate during scheduled class times.
“Each room needed three cables from the teaching console to the back of the room where the camera is located, and new wireless microphones were installed,” said Shane Thomas, campus director of Classroom Technologies & Academic Media Productions. “To compliment the new cameras and microphones, the classroom control systems had to be reprogrammed to include the camera controls.”
Funding for the new equipment was provided by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, a $2 trillion economic relief package that was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Donald Trump on March 27. USU received $17,428,745 from the CARES Act, 50 percent of which was required to be distributed directly to students.A full list of USU classrooms and their accompanying technology setups can be found online.