Blended Learning Recommendations

This document gives recommendations and considerations for synchronous and asynchronous instruction to provide a quality experience for students attending online or viewing the recorded content later.

Classroom Information and Support

Grainger College of Engineering Room Information:
For additional eLearning or Engineering AV support, submit a help request to

Technology Enhanced Classrooms supported by Technology Services: for classroom equipment listings or to request training.

In Class Activity
Alternatives for Blended Learning Environment
Additional Considerations
Using Laser Pointer or Pointing Device
Use a digital pointer so that it shows up on the screen for anyone viewing either in class or online.

Make sure to test optional devices in classrooms prior to class to ensure everything works as expected.

Using Black or White Boards
Use a digital writing surface so writing is captured for viewing online.
  • Document Camera: works like a transparency projector
  • Digital Writing Surfaces
    • Some classrooms are equipped with pen or touch displays. See the AV Room List for equipment in each room.
    • Bring your own device: iPads, Microsoft Surface products, or other PCs with touch screens.

In lecture capture equipped spaces, the presenter camera cannot capture blackboards, whiteboards, or projector images with sufficient quality for remote learners.

Text/Image size, contrast, ambient room lighting, and outside lighting can all effect the camera's ability to capture this content.

Lighting is critical for camera recording, please leave as many classroom lights on as possible.

Passing Physical Examples/Walking Away from Lectern
  • Show the object in detail on the document camera for the remote learners before passing the example object out to your students in class.
  • Staying in the general area of the lectern helps ensure your presentation is fully captured.
Moving around the presentation area or through the classroom can be energizing and engaging for in-person students, but this makes it more difficult to capture the class for online students.
Class Q&A or Discussion Ceiling mics are available:
  • Ensure mics are not muted.

Proper microphone placement is critical for quality audio recording.

We recommend placing the microphone centered on your chest approximately 3-5 inches (the width of your palm) below where your collar bones meet your sternum.

Not all clothing is conducive to this placement and we recommend using a lanyard or ribbon if your clothing does not suit this placement.

No ceiling mics available:
When there are no ceiling mics to capture audience discussion, consider alternatives:
  • Repeat questions so they are captured by the microphone.
  • Use a discussion tool outside of class for students to discuss.

For synchronous environments it is helpful to enlist a moderator for the online students. Online students could use the chat to ask questions and the moderator can relay those to the live classroom.

For asynchronous, leverage the discussion tools to engage students from both the in person and online sections.

Multiple Displays to Show Different Content Most of our lecture capture hardware is not capable of capturing multiple screens of content.

Most rooms only capture the primary screen, generally:
  • If there are two displays: audience left display is recorded.
  • If more there are more than two displays: the center/largest screen is recorded.

  • If you must display different content on different screens for blended courses, please be aware of what the remote students are able to view.

Ensure that the AV system is on for all recorded classes. 

If your instruction does not require the use of the projector, many room systems can be started as “Audio Only” or Video Mute/Blank options may be used.

Either option stops displaying the content to the projector and recordings, but leaves video displaying on confidence monitors for notes or other instructor-only reference material.

Using Zoom For rooms equipped with conferencing, ensure the Zoom settings are correct and that no other devices in the room are connecting to the conference call.
  • Utilizing multiple, co-located devices or the use of improper settings can cause significant audio problems including feedback, squealing, and echoes.

  • Please see this article for how to check your setting in Zoom for specific Engineering rooms:

Check your room setup and schedule a training to test out Zoom in a classroom prior to class time. 

Additional equipment and configuration may be needed depending on the room capabilities.

Keywordsblended learning AV classroom online   Doc ID111532
OwnerMelissa W.GroupEngineering IT
Shared Services
Created2021-06-08 10:18:56Updated2023-05-01 10:53:45
SitesUniversity of Illinois Engineering IT
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