A/V Control Challenges in the Classroom

Many classrooms in today's schools contain multiple electronic devices which are used as teaching aids. Projectors, HDTVs, document cameras, audio reinforcement systems, and other devices are now commonplace. One of the major problems facing this technology enriched environment is the ability to control the features of each device. Since each device has its own separate remote control, the number of remotes has grown to an unmanageable level.

Using each individual remote control for devices in the classroom greatly increases the complexity of the A/V system. Since each classroom set up is connected differently based on the available features and inputs, each device in a classroom may have a remote control that requires a unique startup sequence. This may increase the time it takes for a teacher to perform a given function. For example, to play a DVD the teacher must locate the remote for the projector and the remote for the DVD player. The teacher must then locate the power button on each remote to power on the devices. The input on the projector may need to be switched to the input used for the DVD player.

Finally, the teacher must locate the play button on the DVD player's remote. Training faculty on how to use an A/V system that is controlled by each device's remote control can be difficult. A teacher must learn how to operate the remote control for each of the devices within their classroom. If the teacher switches rooms and equipment in the other room is different, then the teacher must be trained a gain on all of the remote functions for the devices in the second room. This can be stressful for the teachers as well as the training/support staff.

The solution to these problems is a classroom control system. A classroom control system allows all of the devices in the classroom to be controlled from a single panel. The single panel is typically a wall plate with a touch panel or keypad designed to control specific functions. The wall plate is commonly mounted in an accessible location within the classroom, which eliminates the possibility of the controller being lost. A classroom control system eliminates this complexity by offering the option to program multiple commands to a single button. For example, to play a DVD, the teacher goes to the classroom controller mounted on the wall, presses one button which will turn on the classroom's projector and DVD player, then switches to the appropriate input simultaneously. The teacher then presses the play button on the controller to play the DVD.

Many classroom control systems offer customizable buttons, allowing the installer to choose a common format or placement of buttons for an entire school. Each classroom within a school, regardless of the equipment in the room, could have a control system that is identical. This means that a teacher could be trained one time and would be able to operate the A/V system in any classroom throughout the school.

This white paper is for informational purposes only and is subject to change without notice. C2G makes no guarantees, either expressed or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness or reliability of the information found in this document.