Kentucky School System Extends CMS Collaboration Functionality
- By Dian Schaffhauser
The Kentucky Community and Technical College System
(KCTCS) said it will deploy the Wimba Collaboration Suite
across 16 colleges to connect students and educators through online video, voice, text, application sharing, polling and whiteboarding.
"KCTCS fills an important role across the state of Kentucky by providing a quality education that is both affordable and accessible to hundreds of thousands of students," said Sandra L. Cook, system director of distance learning technologies. "Our goal is to continue to expand these opportunities. Working closely with Wimba over the past several months, it is clear that the Wimba Collaboration Suite will be instrumental in helping us towards that goal."
KCTCS is the largest provider of postsecondary education and workforce training in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, with 67 campuses statewide, serving 92,000, students in credit programs and 180,000 people in continuing education programs.
KCTCS will also roll out Wimba's new academic-centric instant messaging platform, Wimba Pronto, which was announced by the company in March. Pronto allows students to collaborate in real time online with classmates, participate in online faculty office hours and gain access to campus services. Communication can be done through instant text, audio and video.
Besides Pronto, the Collaboration Suite consists of three other modules. Wimba Classroom is a virtual classroom that supports audio, video, application sharing and content display. Wimba Voice adds synchronous and asynchronous vocal collaboration to a course management system (CMS). Wimba Create allows instructors to convert Word documents into web pages with navigation and interactive features.
The suite integrates with existing university CMSs, including Angel, Blackboard, WebCT and Moodle to enable instructors to manage their course content and create customized rooms from within their CMS environment.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.