ABOUT WESLEY COLLEGE
Wesley College is an independent day and boarding school for boys and girls situated in South Perth, Western Australia. Wesley has 1,500 students from pre-kindergarten to Year 12, including 150 boarders. The College is co-educational up to Year 6 then boys-only to Year 12, with a unique structure incorporating a middle school for the adolescent years. When Wesley embarked on the refurbishment of their Science Building they were guided by a long term commitment to preserving the college’s heritage, whilst catering for more sophisticated technology. Specifically the college wanted a design that enhanced the educational experience by creating better connectivity in the classroom and beyond the school environments. From a science point of view Wesley’s vision was to “design our science building around environments that the students are going to go into when they leave the college, whether it’s science research facilities or Universities or other high tech workplaces”.
Wesley college required an audio visual solution for their new three storey Science Building which incorporates 8 Labs and 4 Workspaces.
When asked about what Wesley needed from the AV system for their new Science Building Ian Simpson, Head of Science at Wesley College, said “We needed a different system to what is found in traditional science classrooms”. “We needed to move from a teacher centered environment with a single point of focus, to one that is far more interactive with multiple points of focus – we were looking for something that was quite unique”.
Peter Klemm, Wesley’s Director of Information & Learning Technologies added that “multiple points of focus has been part of a discussion point about effective pedagogy (the art and science of teaching) within the college for a while, and the refurbished Science Building is the first teaching space where we could deliver a totally integrated system capable of facilitating this type of learning experience for our students”.
Ian Simpson concluded that Wesley’s needs could be summed up in two words “Visibility and Connectivity. Students should be close enough to the audio visual screens to view content easily and then connect with that screen in order to interact with the content… rather than being just passive recipients of something on a whiteboard”.
Ian Simpson noted that “In the classroom it’s still early days but students have been using screens in cluster groups around the lab and the increased engagement levels and focus have been early wins.. and I’m certain there are still a lot of longer term wins to be discovered”. Ian also noted that the system creates a more responsive learning environment where “for example we can now have three different experiments going on in the room, where different data loggers are projected on different screens.
Staff members can look at how each experiment is going from the displays around the room very very quickly….and provide quick feedback, whilst having multiple activities going on at the same time”. Ian added that the teachers “find the control panels easy to use and they like the ability to have different content on different screens at the same time. “It was a highly complex install but very easy to use. The experience of the staff so far is that the operation of the system is very intuitive”.
The College also believes the new AV system will open exciting opportunities in the future to link up with other schools and students in Australia and around the world in an interactive learning environment.
Concept AV designed and installed an integrated ‘Crestron’ system that included 3 large flat screens for each of the 3 learning areas, a 4×4 video wall that can be seen from every floor, audio outputs and wireless microphones. The system also provided touch panels for teachers to control the displays in the laboratories, video wall area and/or the workspace areas. Teachers can also send their inputs to a number of preconfigured screens. Further advanced control is supplied to the college for advanced matrix capabilities, whereby any input can be directed to any display through a network connected PC.
CONCEPT AV’S ROLE
Peter Klemm – “Concept AV did “pretty much everything – We told them what we wanted to achieve and they did all the hard yards and came back with the design, which we tweaked and clarified in a short timeframe ..They were instrumental in coming up with the solution.”
“The input, direction and design work that Concept AV put into this made a significant contribution to achieving our goals, and their installation, and project management teams have all been excellent”.
“They were also under a fair bit of pressure because we had a very short timeframe to get this done. The completion date for the building was brought forward by 3 months so there were 3 months we didn’t have to complete the system, and they did a fantastic job in having us operational for when we started having classes in here”.
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