Samsung Electronics America, Ltd. is helping Stevens Institute of Technology transform the classroom experience through interactive displays that streamline hybrid learning for students near and far. In these dynamic classrooms, Samsung Interactive Displays enable educators to easily collaborate with and immerse remote and in-person students in course content, thereby enhancing student engagement and learning outcomes. Recognizing the quality of innovation and the results seen at Stevens, leading higher education IT news site EdScoop presented the school with a University Technology Innovation of the Year award in its inaugural EdScoop 50 Awards on November 1, 2022.

Meeting the new normal

Located in Hoboken, New Jersey, Stevens is a premier private research university focused on preparing its 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students for an increasingly complex and technology-centric world. Priding itself on being at the forefront of technology, Stevens was already an established leader in online education through its graduate programs. At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Stevens’ professors and students therefore quickly pivoted to remote learning by leveraging existing video conferencing tools and cameras pointed toward traditional dry-erase whiteboards.

Stevens Institute of Technology is a premier, private research university with a mission to inspire, nurture and prepare students for an increasingly complex and technology-centric world

This initial setup eventually proved challenging as professors would need to come to class with multiple devices, including laptops, tablets and cameras. Some educators were leveraging digital whiteboards from various vendors that Stevens’ IT team had previously purchased. However, these devices required intensive setup and offered limited capabilities. They also featured a frustrating lag between writing on the board and when the digital text would appear, which interfered with the flow of instruction.

Stevens found an ideal solution for reimagining the online learning experience right on campus. Stevens’ IT team had previously invested in two of Samsung’s 55-inch Flip digital displays in the school’s laboratories. After setting up one of the displays in a classroom, the IT team realized that Samsung’s interactive technology could connect professors and remote learners and enable them to collaborate just as if they were in the same classroom.

The new connected classroom

Offering Wi-fi and Bluetooth connectivity, HDMI connections and screen mirroring, Samsung’s interactive display integrated seamlessly with Stevens’ video conferencing software and tools. The intuitive display was immediately attractive for professors and faculty as it greatly reduced the learning curve for adoption. They could begin teaching and presenting informational slides and videos to remote students with the display right out of the box. Professors also enjoy the ability to record entire presentations, take screenshots, save files and send them to students—all directly on the screen.

Samsung’s interactive displays feature an industry-leading realistic writing and drawing experience

“It truly is plug and play. You just turn it on, and you go. You don’t have that feature with a lot of other boards,” said Harry Ortiz, associate director of academic multimedia services at Stevens.

Samsung’s interactive displays also enable professors to annotate on the board with content mirrored directly on the remote students’ devices in real time. Students can simultaneously take notes and interact with content live on their own device’s screen. As pandemic restrictions have eased and a portion of Stevens’ student population has returned to campus, real-time collaboration through Samsung interactive displays has become instrumental to bridge remote and in-person learning. Importantly, students report feeling more engaged than ever in these connected classrooms.

Student and faculty response to the displays has been overwhelmingly positive—students feel more engaged and professors enjoy how seamless and immersive lessons are now

“Today, Stevens’ esteemed professors are able to create an immersive classroom experience where students can equally collaborate and enjoy access to the same educational resources whether they’re in the classroom or joining remotely. As universities reflect on lessons learned during the pandemic and hybrid learning becomes a fixture in higher education, schools like Stevens will distinguish themselves with an innovative mindset and the expertise and infrastructure needed to scale up a high-quality, hybrid program for students,” said Chris Mertens, Vice President of U.S. Sales, B2B Displays, Samsung.

Embracing digital signage

After realizing the impact of the interactive displays in the classroom, Stevens is now fully embracing digital displays across its campus, including by designing new classrooms and state-of-the-art buildings centered around interactive technology. New 55-inch Samsung displays have been installed in conference rooms, outside department buildings and other high-traffic areas. These displays allow Stevens to promote events, share news, raise school spirit and connect its campus like never before.

Stevens is now designing new classrooms and buildings with Samsung’s interactive technology and digital signage at their core

“You expect to have high-end technology that doesn’t just look cool. You also need to have it be functional and easy to use. For people who want to work here and for people who want to go to school here, this shows that Stevens is serious when we say collaboration and innovation are core values of the university,” added Ortiz.

To learn more about how Stevens Institute of Technology is transforming its classrooms and campus with Samsung Displays, read the full case study here.

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