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Phase One of VcAlberta.ca Launches
vc_logoPhase one of the VcAlberta.ca site went live the first week of October. Feedback and suggestions are now being solicited from the Alberta learning system. The site is being demonstrated to several committees and groups such as ACET, ACTIC, STAG, and TAG.

The aim of the current site is to provide a framework that allows the videoconferencing community in the Alberta learning system to participate by providing feedback to current content on the site and to produce and submit their own content in the form of articles, FAQ's, annotated links, and news of what's going on in the learning system.

By involving those involved with videoconferencing in the province, this site aims to be one of the mechanisms that will help build a community of videoconference users that includes teachers, administrators and technical staff.

The cornerstone of the site is a 'YellowPages' directory of videoconferencing facilities in the K-12 and Post-Secondary institutions in Alberta. The directory makes it easy to find a facility, learn who the person responsible for the facility is and how to contact them, and what the technical capabilities and dial information is for the facility.

The site is a work in progress and there are many features that have been identified and are being built. They will be rolled out and included on the site as they are completed. Please provide you feedback as to what's good; what needs improvement; and what's missing.


The goals of the site are to:

  1. Increase the number of videoconferences in the learning system
  2. Improve the quality and experience of videoconferences
  3. Build a community of videoconferencing users across the provincial learning system

The Alberta Videoconference Gateway will have four major benefits:

  1. Raise the profile of videoconferencing in Alberta educational institutions - By collecting information about who has the facilities to videoconference among Alberta educational institutions, and raising awareness of this within each institution, the project will raise the visibility of videoconferencing. In making institutions aware of sites they can connect to, this Web site will inform researchers, educators, and administrators who they can collaborate with using videoconferencing.
  2. Build support for SuperNet and increase its usage - This gateway will promote research and educational collaboration within the Alberta learning system, and will facilitate and provide support for videoconference collaboration that exploits the capabilities of SuperNet. The increased number of videoconferences that result from this Web site will increase SuperNet usage. The web site will help educators discover SuperNet and the opportunities it provides.
  3. Make it easier to connect - The gateway will make it simpler to organize videoconferences. It will inform people they can videoconference with many institutions using their institution's equipment. It will also provide valuable information from the technology standards and standard solutions' work that is currently underway.
  4. Improve the videoconference experience - Institutions have various videoconferencing capabilities and different levels of experience in hosting a videoconference. As more sites connect with each other, a community of users emerges, and these users can work together to improve the videoconferencing experience. Experienced sites that have learned how to make a successful videoconference can educate and mentor less experienced sites.

By collecting tips and tricks and other educational materials, institutions will have a resource to improve their facilities and the quality of the videoconferences they host. The videoconferencing gateway will encourage more institutions to acquire videoconferencing capabilities, or improve their existing capabilities.

This site, and its tools, will provide an opportunity to create a formal/informal videoconferencing users community/group that would meet periodically via videoconferencing to share best practices.

For more information, please contact
the This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
at the University of Lethbridge.

 

CRDC, University of Lethbridge