Students learn from ‘authentic’ session with Canadian Museum of Nature Scientist

Audio and video ‘outstanding’ quality with support of ORION connection

A biology class at Dr. John M. Denison Secondary School in York Region recently took part in a live demonstration by a research scientist at the Canadian Museum of Nature via videoconference connected over ORION.

Since both the school and the Canadian Museum of Nature are connected to ORION (and the Museum is also connected to CANARIE), the students enjoyed a smooth videoconference session.

“I was very impressed with the quality of both the audio and video throughout the session,” said Steve Smallwood, the science teacher who arranged the videoconference session and Learning Lead with the ABEL Program. “At no time was there any noticeable drag or jitter that might result from high latency. It was as if our guest presenter was standing in the room with us the entire time. The ORION connection that supported this event is outstanding.”

The session, titled Sea Lampreys: Sampling and Classification Techniques, covered life history, collection methods and fieldwork, and identification techniques.

Feedback from the students was positive. One student commented, “It’s better to hear concepts from an actual expert than from a textbook.” Another student said that, “the researcher had actual specimens to use (therefore we were able to appreciate the details) and his research is really current – happening right now – so that makes it more interesting.”

“Claude Renaud [the Museum research scientist who led the session] did a great job relating to the students, supporting his presentation with a PowerPoint and actual specimens of various organisms. It was an authentic experience and I look forward to more opportunities in the next school year,” said Smallwood.