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Industry Leaders Discuss Biggest Topics in Audio/Visual Technology

The Office of Information Technology’s Andy Borts and Frank Alaimo participated in expert panel discussions at Wolfvision’s Virtual Collaboration Experience.

People  |  Jun 16, 2020  |  By Nicole Johnson
Computer on top of a lectern inside a classroom

Technology inside a classroom at UNLV. (Rakitha Perera/UNLV OIT)

On June 15, Andy Borts and Frank Alaimo, both from the Office of Information Technology, participated in the Virtual Collaboration Experience powered by Wolfvision as leading experts in audio/visual (AV) technology for higher education.

Borts sat on a panel with four other technologists to discuss lecture capture solutions. The instructional technology specialist gave insight on how Panopto has transformed the way instructors present content to their students. 

“We (UNLV) introduced Panopto two years ago,” said Borts. “Because of its flexibility and ease of use, the platform empowers instructors to teach wherever and whenever. They can record course content in their office using a webcam, in a classroom with lecture capture equipment, or on a beach with their phone.”

Borts sees more instructors adopting the lecture capture technology in their teaching practices. It could be due to the fact that Panopto is a robust tool that captures content, not just lectures.

“I see instructors use Panopto to present good content - like step-by-step dance routines and architecture software demonstrations - to students in a more constructive way. Plus the video-on-demand feature allows students to choose when and how they want to view the recording.”

Borts continues to work with instructors to improve their technology experience whether they are teaching on campus or remotely. 

At the end, Borts left the other panelists and conference attendees, who streamed the event, with some advice.

“Always listen to instructor feedback,” he said. “They’re experience using the technology can help you improve the tool for others.”

Alaimo, senior AV systems specialist, joined a group of AV professionals from Stanford University, the University of Notre Dame, and the University of Southern California to discuss future-ready hybrid classrooms. 

He gave insight on how UNLV and other higher education institutions are prioritizing technology.

“We’ve seen a shift in thinking among faculty,” said Alaimo. “They’re embracing technology more, which helps us evolve for the next generation of classroom technology.”

Alaimo is on the forefront of designing and building these advanced technology spaces on campus. Most recently, he helped renovate an area of the UNLV Faculty Center into a production center.

“It now has breakout areas and spaces where faculty can record their lectures,” he said. “They can also get training on different technology like Panopto and Webex from our instructional technology experts.”

Alaimo hopes he can transition other rooms into production spots as the demand grows.

“For now, we’ll use this time to assess what faculty need and don’t need, making technology improvements as we go.”