Tokyo University of Science embraces hybrid learning

July 20, 2022

How we helped

Challenge icon

The Challenge

  • Tokyo University of Science needed to enhance the learning experience for its on-site and online classes, as it embraced ‘HyFlex’ education
  • Laptop cameras didn’t capture good enough images for students to see the whiteboard or teacher clearly
  • Unreliable microphones meant students had to keep adjusting the volume as well as hearing feedback
Solution icon

The Solution

  • PTZ cameras provide professional Full HD images that show every detail of every lesson
  • Five ceiling-mounted, beamforming microphones clearly pick up whatever the lecturer and students say
  • An AI-based video analytics appliance automatically moves cameras to follow speakers, while handwriting extraction ensures writing on the whiteboard is always visible
Outcome icon

The Outcome

  • Higher video quality provides a more immersive online experience, helping remote students focus and learn uninterrupted
  • With no handheld microphones there’s no need to spend time disinfecting equipment, so classes can start promptly and flow naturally
  • With true HyFlex capability, now there’s no limit to the number of students who can join a class
REA-C100 Edge Analytics Appliance

REA-C1000 Edge Analytics Appliance

Intelligent, AI-based video analytics unit

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4K pan-tilt-zoom camera with 40x zoom

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Compact 4K BOX-style camera with 25x zoom

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MAS-A100 Ceiling Microphone

MAS-A100 microphone

Ceiling microphone with speech reinforcement

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Looking to make education more connected and engaging? Speak to our team today.

Future lessons could be more like entertainment. Sony’s AI technology would control our cameras so they follow the speaker and offer a variety of angles, automatically. Meanwhile, our microphones would create the clearest audio possible, thanks to machine learning technology.

Prof. Hideki Wakabayashi
Tokyo University of Science

HyFlex learning in the middle of COVID-19

In the Summer of 2020, amidst COVID-19, Tokyo University of Science embraced HyFlex lessons. By teaching face-to-face and online at the same time, the university hoped to provide a consistent but flexible learning experience for students. But images from the initial cameras weren’t clear, meaning students couldn’t see the teacher or the whiteboard properly. And time was frequently wasted adjusting the volume and sensitivity levels on video conferencing microphones.

Lecturer using edge analytics for hyflex lessons
SRG-X400 and SRG-XB25 installed on lecture room ceiling

Full HD video and high quality audio

Working with Sony, the university chose new remote PTZ cameras that could clearly capture teachers, students, the whiteboard and a projector screen. The cameras are controlled by an AI-based appliance that moves them automatically and makes sure any writing on the whiteboard is clear for every student. For audio, five ceiling-mounted microphones capture everything said within the room, as well as amplifying conversations over speakers.

Immersive learning, in person and online

With high fidelity audio, every student can hear the teacher more clearly. Full HD video brings online learning closer to a real-world experience, especially as AI-based auto-tracking keeps teachers clearly visible as they walk around the classroom and speak with students. Previously, handheld microphones were disinfected every time they were used, so ceiling mounted microphones save time in every lesson. And the university is able to offer truly flexible learning for any student.

Lecturer presenting class in full HD without losing quality