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The Digitally Connected Campus

- October 18, 2017 - 0 Comments

Craig Tranter is a former educator, and now serves as a technology presenter for Cisco. This blog is the fourth in his series on advancements and opportunities in education. All views are his own. 

Let’s talk about a campus of the future. Imagine a digitally connected campus where students can access content from any device, and the campus reacts to their presence, giving them personalized, real-time updates.

Here’s an example. Take a typical student, let’s call her Sarah.

Sarah goes to a university where third-party suppliers have worked closely with Cisco to create a digitally connected campus. Here’s a typical day for Sarah if she does choose to physically go to campus.

Sarah heads to campus and arrives in the smart car park, where she’s already booked her parking space via an app on her phone.

The lighting reacts to her presence, saving money through energy efficiency and making Sarah feel safe as she moves around the campus.

As the university supports a culture of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), Sarah takes her personal device(s) and automatically connects to the university Wi-Fi using Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) to authenticate her as a user and give her secure access to all the content that she needs.

She heads to the library where she uses her ID card to get in to the secure building.

Sarah sees interactive digital displays and uses the touch screen to find a quiet area in the library where she can work in peace. Through the power of Cisco CMX (Connected Mobile Experience) Sarah is able to follow the indoor wayfinding to her quiet study space.

Sarah can look up book locations through RFID tagging, and, if she still needs help, she can request assistance using the university’s ‘Assist Me’ app to get personalized assistance to find that elusive book. Because even in this digital world, books do still exist! (For now at least!)

Having completed her task in the library, she heads through the campus and with CMX and EMSP (Enterprise Mobility Services Platform) she gets real-time, personalized notifications on nearby events that she has indicated she may be interested in.

Sarah can also pre-book her study sessions in specific rooms, which is then displayed with digital signage to show that the room is occupied.

She talks to her friends in the room and to the mentor who is attending via video, so that everyone is able to collaborate wherever they are.

At every step through Sarah’s day, she is securely connected to all the content that she needs and is able to interact with the environment around her. She can easily access different systems and the campus itself reacts to her presence.

Perhaps tomorrow it’s raining, so she decides that she can just as easily work from home and connect virtually.

Wherever Sarah is, she receives an enhanced digital experience that improves her learning.

Watch out for the next post about collaboration tools and apps.

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