eLearning & Video Conferencing

E-Learning has become one of the fastest growing technology revolutions for the past five years. The efficiency to acquire new knowledge, and ability to adapt new skills to a changing digital market can make a huge difference expediting the organizational success. One of the tools to acquire new knowledge is online video conferencing or video chatting.

For the past five years, online educational sites such as https://www.khanacademy.org/  and  http://www.educator.com/ both offer excellent educational content, regardless of the fact that one is a non-profit organization and the other is a for profit orgnization. Online educational platforms offer great flexibility for students to study subjects at their convenience, however, it is still one way communication gateway. Students can watch tutorials online, but there is still a lack of real time communication between students and teachers.

A few years ago, Skype became one of the most popular desktop video chat program in the market. A few years later, Facebook and Google integrated desktop video chat technologies into the browser platform. It allows users to video chat with friends using only their browsers without the need to install plugins and third party softwares. It greatly boosts the flexibility and ease of video chatting online, and broadens the accessibility among various devices.

Below are some online video chatting programs available for public use.

1.) https://www.facebook.com/videocalling

2.) https://videolink2.me/start

3.) https://www.google.com/tools/dlpage/hangoutplugin

While video chatting technologies are getting more sophisticated, it also brings great opportunities and new hope to the online E-Learning community. By incorporating the online video chat functionality into the browser, educational website can directly set up real time Q&A sessions to better help students with their subjects. This reduces the delay between questions and answers and can greatly expedite the learning progress.

Web chatting functions are available for web developers, and they can integrate video chatting functionalities into their websites by utilizing WebRTC protocol (Web Real Time Communication). It is a protocol that allows developers to write real time multimedia applications such as video chatting without third party plugins. It also requires extensive knowledge of JavaScript API to develop native RTC applications.

What has your eLearning experience been with integrated video functionality?

Additional Resources about WebRTC:

http://www.webrtc.org/

http://www.webrtc.org/reference/native-apis

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WebRTC