Hybrid Lesson at its Best - Chuo University Business School

Shifting to hybrid classes from problematic online lessons during COVID-19 

Shifting to on line lessons in response to “Don’t stop learning” policy during COVID-19 

● As online lessons have many challenges, hybrid classes, with some in class participants, was considered.

In the midst of a state-issued emergency due to COVID-19, Chuo University Business School, where business professionals in various industries learn, had to plan to still welcome new students in 2020. At the first kick-off meeting held online, with a strong message “Don’t stop learning!”, the university announced a policy of shifting to online lessons and continuing to provide a place for learning. However, because of the interactive-style lessons such as group work and discussions, the online lessons with only remote participation lacked a lively communication, and the quality and depth of learning were not satisfactory. In response to this, the business school must think about the ideal way of classes in the new normal, and in July, it came up with hybrid classes, which combine online classes and face-to-face classes.

yvc-1000_z_0001_f.jpgTrial-run experiments resulted in successful hybrid classes, resolving prior problems

● Low performance of existing speakerphones made it difficult to communicate in hybrid classes

● YVC-1000 solved problems during trial-run hybrid classes

From July to September, with the cooperation of volunteer students, Chuo Business School conducted several experimental hybrid classes using existing equipment, but the sound quality of the speakerphones made by other companies was low, especially the voices sent to the remote side, which was difficult to hear and caused stress, resulting in unsatisfactory learning quality.In order to pick up the voices of students sitting away from the microphones to secure social distance, the business school tried almost all possible measures such as increasing the number of microphones but howling and echo occurred. And by using the low sound quality speakerphones, it was almost impossible to unite remote class and face-to-face class. In the mid of September, when Chuo Business School was about to give up the idea of hybrid class, a student who 3.pngparticipated in the experimental class advised that his company had just implemented Yamaha’s products and the sound quality was very impressive. Chou Business School quickly decided to conduct the experimental hybrid class using YVC-1000 demo device. As a result, it was realized that all the voice problems up to that point could be cleared, and Chuo Business School applied for an extra budget and promptly implemented YVC-1000 to its classes in the same month.

Voice quality is greatly improved, revitalizing the hybrid class idea

Connecting 5 dedicated microphones to YVC-1000 - delivers clear voices to remote side

● After receiving high evaluation from students, Chuo Business School planned to expand hybrid lessons

YVC-1000 and a webcam that showed the entire classroom were installed, and by connecting a handheld microphone for professors, the voice was clearly heard by the remote students. In addition, 5 extension microphones, YVC-MIC1000EX, were connected to the YVC-1000 and were placed among students in the classroom to pick up and deliver voices of classmates to the remote side. As a result, a natural and lively communication was made happen in the hybrid classes, clear and stable voice was delivered to both the classroom and remote participants, while howling and echo were suppressed, and there was no request for improvement from students regarding voice. The discussions became more effective, and the learning quality was elevated. Based on this success, the school decided to implement YVC-1000 and YVC-MIC1000EX in another classroom of the same size. As its hybrid classes were highly evaluated by students, Chuo Business School planned to further expand hybrid classes in the future.