Videoconferencing transmits two-way interactive live video and audio simultaneously between two or more sites. It provides the opportunity to meet face-to-face with colleagues, or conduct courses, seminars, or meetings. With videoconferencing you can see, hear, and interact with others hundreds or even thousands of miles away. In addition, you can combine this technology with multiple types of media — text, graphics, and objects on a document camera; computer graphics; videotapes; and web sites. Participants without videoconferencing equipment can also join via audioconferencing using a phone handset or speakerphone.
There are four main types of interactive videoconferencing. In each type, a location with the appropriate equipment is necessary:
- Satellite videoconferencing is one-way video usually delivered from an origination site via satellite to multiple remote sites. Telephone, fax and/or keypads supply the means for interaction.
- Compressed videoconferencing uses a CODEC (compressor/decompressor) to compress the television audio and video signals, from an analog to a digital signal for transmission via ISDN phone lines or the Internet.
- DS 3 videoconferencing provides full motion, two-way video, voice, and data communications that are transmitted over a fiber optic network.
- IP videoconferencing allows locations to connect to videoconferences via the Internet using the H.323 standard.
Connections for videoconferencing can be either point-to-point or multipoint. Multipoint connections require the use of a bridge. Some bridges offer a variety of options that may include combining different types of systems at one time. Advance testing is required for connections to sites that have not already been certified. Training, scheduling, and technical assistance are critical for effective videoconferencing. Training should include an understanding of the equipment, practice with using the equipment, and skills to adapt content materials - well before a first session.Consultation and assistance for planning a videoconference, becoming comfortable with the equipment, designing the instruction, selecting and creating visuals, and developing feedback and evaluation techniques are offered by the ICS Instructional Design Team. ICS interactive videoconference services are available for use by any governmental, educational, or non-profit agency or department.
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Training for Videoconferencing Website
ICS Instructional Design Team
View the Video: "Videoconferencing by Design"
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Last Updated: April 2006