UTHCT adds a new interactive video classroom

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler in collaboration with the Northeast Texas Consortium (NETnet) has a new interactive video classroom in Room 113 of the Center for Biomedical Research on the UTHSCT campus, 11937 U.S. Highway 271.

The new classroom enables students enrolled in master’s degree programs in biotechnology and environmental health to pursue their studies whether they are at UTHSCT or on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus in Nacogdoches. UTHSCT and SFA co-sponsor these master’s programs. The new classroom came on line just in time for the start of the spring semester at SFA. Programs originating from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston also will be transmitted to the new classroom.

The cost to install the specialized equipment and to modify the classroom was about $50,000, which was funded by UTHSCT in conjunction with NETnet. This is the first of 10 new classrooms that soon will be unveiled across East Texas. Additional classrooms – including ones at Tyler Junior College, Angelina College in Lufkin, Paris Junior College, and Texas A&M University-Commerce – will come online throughout January.

These classrooms enable students and faculty to share live video and high resolution computer graphics among similarly equipped sites, said Dr. Mickey Slimp, executive director of NETnet. The new equipment provides a better quality signal and sharper video. Each room can be remotely monitored and problems diagnosed from any desktop computer, thus assuring much greater reliability than in some older video classrooms.

Laura Hedrick, associate director of the Biotechnology Graduate Program, is the recipient of the grant that funded the new classroom. NETnet engineers Gordon Martin and David Nichols prepared the UTHSCT site for installation. Visionality: Designs that Work, a Texas-based company, completed the final installation.

NOTICE: Protected health information is subject to electronic disclosure.