LIT2T Leadership Guide

41 TO: TABLE OF CONTENTS resolution. The page also has links that will allow the staff member to easily update plug-ins, such as downloading missing or outdated software. The web browser standards established by the LearnIT2teach team will ensure that your centre’s computers are up-to-date and will be able to run most online learning resources. 8.4 Computer Room Layout Considerations The physical space in which the computers reside can affect the success of blended language teaching. Room temperature, sightlines, workstation proximity, lighting and environmental noise can interfere with learner comfort and learning. Whether the administrator has inherited a CALL room or is establishing one, it is a good idea to solicit instructor, learner and professional advice on the computer room’s physical conditions. The checklist, Appendix A6, provides a listing of considerations for the CALL lab. Actions such as changing the window coverings to admit natural light into the room can make a difference in the perception of CALL activities for learners and instructors. 8.5 Network Bandwidth Establishing a baseline or average Internet speed for computers in the CALL room allows you to determine whether the network connection is being compromised from an external source. Benchmarking your Internet speed or bandwidth serves several purposes. If the bandwidth is degraded over a long period, you can use the numbers to give your request more reliability when notifying the Internet host. You can identify peaks and valleys in Internet speed and inform instructors of these so they can schedule their activities accordingly. Online resources such as bandwidth place or Primus Speed test provide free metering. Instructors or a nominated TELL person can use the checklist Appendix A7 to monitor bandwidth speed at your centre. 8.6 Projection The data projector is a very important device when teaching in a blended mode. Instructors use it to introduce, clarify and demonstrate concepts. Without it, learners might have to gather around a single workstation to view a demonstration of a technique. The projection lamp usually determines the health of a projector. These often cost over $150, so it is important to care for the entire unit, ensuring that the bulb is not broken in an accidental drop, overheated or left on for no reason. Additional considerations include mounting, reducing brightness and managing projection time. If your projector is in a protective case and is signed out by instructors from a central resource locker, it should be assigned to a permanent location. The projector mount should be affixed to a ceiling to lessen the handling of the unit. This will give the projector and lamps longer lifetimes. To increase the lamp’s lifetime, ensure that the room is cleaned and dusted on a regular basis. Dust in the projector’s filter can cause overheating. Clean the projector’s air filter every three months by simply running the filter under a tap. Set the operating mode to economy or eighty percent of brightness. The projection will not be as vivid but the lamp will last approximately fifty percent longer. Ensure that the instructors use the remote control to turn the projector off or put it in standby mode when the projection is not required. An instructor may use the checklist Appendix A8 to help with a projector’s condition and quality.