Smart Classrooms - NIU - Media Services

Smart Classrooms


Smart Classrooms

The Smart Classroom Initiative is a program sponsored by the Office of the Provost to provide classrooms with advanced technology for the enhancement of students’ education.  Media Services and Information Technology Services (ITS) are charged with supporting these rooms.

For general inquiries regarding Smart Classroom technology and its use contact the Smart Classroom Trainers/Technicians.

Smart Classroom Technology
Each Provost-sponsored Smart Classroom is equipped with an equipment user guide, multimedia projector, screen, networked PC computer, document camera, DVD/VHS player with closed caption decoding capability, SMART Sympodium interactive monitor, Crestron audiovisual system control, and cabling for instructor laptop connectivity.  Most rooms also have a sound system and a direct phone line to technical support.

  • The computer in each room is connected to the Internet via NIU’s system. Clicking on the "Podium Control" icon on the desktop activates the Graphic User Interface (GUI) for Crestron audiovisual equipment control.   Login and password protection are included on each computer. Standard office software is pre-loaded for instructor’s use. Special software can be loaded if the instructor makes a request to ITS. All computers have a DVD/CD player installed and USB ports for jump drives.
  • The document camera (also known as a visual presenter or generically as an Elmo) is the electronic equivalent of an overhead transparency projector with enhanced capabilities. It can project documents, transparencies, and slides as well as 3D objects.
  • A DVD/VHS player is provided in most rooms for playing video programs. VHS is no longer supported in all classrooms, and recently re-equipped rooms have a stand alone Blu-Ray player.  Closed caption decoding is available for videos that have a closed captioning track recorded on them.
  • The multimedia projector in each room provides large screen display of the selected source (PC, DVD/VHS player, document camera, or instructor laptop).

Every effort to standardize the operation of the classrooms has been made. However, room size and changes in equipment technologies have necessitated some differences between rooms.

Smart Classroom Guides
Media Services has created equipment operation guides for each Provost-sponsored Smart Classroom. The illustrated guides describing the operation of each room’s equipment are available in the rooms as well as online for most rooms.