Before the show floor opened at InfoComm 2022, a variety of tours of Pro AV technology in action were taking place around Las Vegas. One of those is of the University of Nevada Las Vegas, where guests can see an innovative hybrid learning design and a cutting-edge theater come to life.
RebelFlex is UNLV’s unique twist on the hybrid learning environment, which began its development roughly six months into the pandemic. With just three months to install and implement the technology, RebelFlex was up and running to very positive results. It is currently used in 73 rooms on campus—more than 60 of which are learning spaces with the remaining rooms for departmental use.
The InfoComm tour begins with guests split into two classrooms. They are brought together via Webex to experience what those in-person and remote learners see during the school year. A Vaddio PTZ camera is in the back of each RebelFlex classroom, enabling those at-home learners to have the same view as in-person. A WolfVision document cam at the podium enables teachers to bring whiteboards or presentations directly to the student with a simple press on the touchscreen. The classrooms are miked with Sennheiser’s TCC2 ceiling mics and teachers are provided with lapel mics in order to focus the sound on their voice, both of which are monitored by Sennheiser’s Cockpit. The Inogeni Share 2, Panopto lecture capture and a Crestron 8x8 AV switcher, processor and 10-inch touchpanel (monitored by Crestron Fusion) bring the RebelFlex experience together for a flexible synchronous and asynchronous learning experience.
Teachers were put through a three-phase training program to learn the system. The training consisted of a pedagogical approach to engage remote students; what Andy Borts, instructional technology support specialist, called “tech prep 101” to familiarize teachers with Webex, touchscreens, microphones and other technological elements involved with RebelFlex; and lastly a hands-on phase to understand how the first two training sessions came together in real time. Thus far, remote learners appear to be more engaged than ever before and able to learn on their time.
Tour guests are then invited to a theater/classroom that, although heavily used for film studies, is more than prepared to handle general purpose learning in a fully immersive audio and visual experience. The state-of-the-art theater, which was revamped in just over 100 days, let guests feel the experience with a Dolby Atmos Cinema Processor and a 4K Barco Laser Digital Cinema Projector, which can easily change dimensions to accommodate 3D, theatrical movies or film class productions. Guest shouldn’t forget to put their 3D-glasses on as the whole experience is brought to life for tour guests with a 20-minute display on the 26-x 14.05-foot Stewart Filmscreen “Director’s Choice 300” screen, which was the largest of its kind when installed.