Federation University,

Ballarat Tech School
Services : Audio Visual

PROJECT PLAN AND DESIGN PERSPECTIVE

Leaping into the technological future and preparing students, parents and community members for a fast-changing 'global-world', using the latest in forward-thinking and adaptive technology is at the core of Ballarat’s new Tech School. This sophisticated, 21st-century facility is based at Federation University's SMB campus and generously spans over two floors.

When the Tech School moved into the Audio-Visual design stage MultiTek Solutions was asked to collaborate with Federation University to develop a cutting-edge AV system. MTS set to work to design an inclusive and collaborative system capable of expansion in an ever-changing world.

 Shaun Haugh, design engineer and sales manager at MultiTek Solutions, oversaw the implementation of the new AV infrastructure. Shane talks about the design perspective: "Using the Crestron NVX Networked AV System allowed an AV design that gives the technology school almost limitless flexibility in how they distribute information and interact with their young students, enabling collaboration and shared learning in ways we have never seen before."

Equipped with high-tech learning tools the school aims to foster real-world education by linking directly with various industry leaders. Programs offered by the school will be accessible to secondary students from fifteen partner schools from across the region, helping to prepare students for jobs of the future.

 Shane goes on to explain that the new learning centre incorporates a north and south end, with each dedicated to the 'key learning' areas of the school, New Energies, Advanced Manufacturing, Science, Food and Fibre, and Virtual Reality. Designated break out spaces allows each room to flow seamlessly into the other, encouraging both individual learning and collaboration across the disciplines. Each merging area is fully-equipped with the latest in display technology from LG and Epson. Information can move smoothly beyond the four walls of each learning space using the infinitely scalable and highly flexible NVX Series by Crestron.

PROCESS AND TECHNICAL APPROACH

According to Shane, MultiTek Solutions made it a high-priority to work closely with all stakeholders to ensure their technology met Federation University's specific requirements. He says: "MultiTek was able to produce a system that was not only practical for each room for day to day learning, but also for a fully integrated facility capable of distributing AV services across the facility with almost limitless flexibility."

The result is a state-of-the-art facility that is so much more than just a school. Ballarat's new Tech School is a place where advanced technology allows teachers to quickly switch between different education tools, and where students can effortlessly immerse themselves in rich media resources available at the touch of a fingertip.

Shane enthusiastically describes how MultiTek Solutions took a fresh and inventive approach to the audio-visual design process, a process that would ultimately give the tech school the fantastic results they were after. Shane narrates: "The entire project from beginning to end was one that required out of the box thinking and innovative design ideas to ensure the systems met the required brief and in a timely manner. The ability to distribute AV over a standard IT network is a relatively new one, and we were able to design and implement it due to our very close working relationship with Crestron ANZ. Surprisingly, the most significant design issue we had, was facing too many options! With a system, such as NVX, it would have been easy to fall into the trap of providing each area with every possible combination of sharing and viewing capabilities and therefore making the user interface unnecessarily messy and complicated. So, we began the process of designing a GUI that dynamically changed depending on what sources were available in nearby rooms, allowing the user in each space to share their content across nearby displays, or tap into content from adjacent areas. If in the event, a special occasion required something more complex, then a tech page is available which provides the user with the ability to distribute any source, to any display in the entire facility."

When asked about MultiTek Solutions' approach to the project, Shane goes on to explain that the process for the AV works required an immense amount of pre-planning to meet the university’s stringent deadlines. "Months of workshop testing and programming, equipment preparation and documentation was needed to ensure we could roll out and install all the equipment in the specified two-week window. The installation of all equipment was a massive feat of manpower in the final weeks of 2017, but due to the dedication and expertise of all the MultiTek Solutions' team, it was a huge success, with all systems fully operational by the December 22nd deadline."

PROJECT OUTCOMES

MultiTek Solutions has a proven, and robust track record of success in the completion of government and corporate AV projects. With their wealth of experience and commitment to the latest trends in technology, the new tech school has successfully emerged as a cutting-edge facility. The AV infrastructure designed and installed by MultiTek Solutions has delivered exceptional performance capabilities. The AV system distributes high definition vision from a single location to multiple displays anywhere in the building with integrated distributed audio and a control interface that is intuitive and easy to use.

It is hard to deny that the landscape of education is changing as we see dramatic advances in technology. Alternative dimensions of student learning are beginning to emerge as the dynamics of classrooms shift and reshape the teaching and knowledge growth process. A whole new aspect of student-centric learning is starting to take place, a metamorphosis in education is happening! The establishment of Ballarat's new Tech School will undoubtedly transform the delivery of education both globally, and in the Ballarat region.

Regarding the outcome of the project, Shane says: "I am particularly proud of the MultiTek team, we each brought our own unique skill set to this project, coupled with an endless amount of hard work and enthusiasm. The building and the AV systems complement each other, and the overall result has well exceeded the brief."

 

 

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