Six Nations Polytechnic Instructor: “When I use The LightBoard, no one misses a class”

Adam Taylor and his students at Six Nations Polytechnic have discovered first-hand the benefits of groundbreaking technology for our remote teaching and learning world.

You see, Taylor, who is the Program Development Officer of Skilled Trades at the widely known academic institution in Brantford, ON, utilized The LightBoard Depot Inc. when the pandemic hit in March 2020.

Taylor and his students were sold on the technology right away.

“The world quickly changed three years ago and The LightBoard was a game-changer for myself and my students,” he says during an interview. “I just love it and my students love it, too.”

Shortly before the COVID-19 pandemic became a reality, Taylor was working at the McMaster Research Institute, and learned about the new technology that was the talk around campus.

He met with Michael Justason, the co-founder of The LightBoard Depot Inc. and his team.

Justason has long had a passion for innovative teaching methods, which led to the development of equipment and methods for live-synchronous virtual classes using a lightboard, revolutionizing online education.

Justason is the Program Chair, B.Tech. Civil Engineering Infrastructure Technology, and the Program Chair, Business and Management, and Assistant Professor, Booth School.

“Mike and his team were super helpful in showing me their technology and helping me set everything up,” says Taylor. “When I started using the technology, there was no looking back. It was a perfect solution for teaching during a global pandemic, and I still use it for remote teaching. When I use The LightBoard, no one misses a class – that’s how much students enjoy the technology as it keeps them engaged and it’s the closest thing to in-person classes.”

The LightBoard Depot Inc. is now being used by scores of professors, instructors, and professionals from an array of sectors.

“The LightBoard is a piece of glass positioned between the camera and the presenter and it allows you to draw in much the same way you would on a blackboard or a whiteboard,” explains Justason. “If I have any kind of course content that really necessitates drawing, that’s no problem. Our technology allows you to draw and effectively deliver the right content to your audience. More importantly, our technology allows you to maintain eye contact. You can continuously face an audience and it helps to maintain that relationship between the student and the instructor which can be very challenging in online teaching,” he adds.

“The students really enjoy our technology,” says Justason, “because they are engaged, and they are learning. The technology is also perfect for spreadsheets, word documents, PDFs, and videos – just click a button and the content appears together with the presenter in an interactive space.”

Taylor uses a greenscreen to compliment his classes and enjoys the fact that through Free Open-Source Software, words and content are flipped so that students can see them front on.

“It’s simple and practical technology that is really helping everyone teach and learn effectively,” says Taylor, who teaches machine shop, math, and engineering drawings. He also teaches at Mohawk College of Applied Arts & Technology.

“What I really like about it is that you don’t need a massive room to house the technology; it’s not at all inconvenient. While it may look like you are in a wide-open room, that’s not the case – the technology is compact and works in small spaces,” adds Taylor.

People using the technology across Canada have been raving about it ever since it launched on the market.

For Dr. Ned Huang, who teaches at the University of Ottawa in Mechanical Engineering, his favourite part about the LightBoard Depot Inc. is how much fun it is.

“The best thing about the LightBoard is the students and I have a lot of fun. And students tend to pay more attention when you have a connection with them, and that connection is something the LightBoard facilitates,” said Dr. Ned Huang.

Shauna Gupta, English for Academic Preparation Professor at Niagara College, knows online learning is here to stay, adding “it’s a new world and we need new tools.”

She uses technology from the Lightboard Depot Inc. in classes which has been demonstrated to increase student engagement by a whopping 70%.

“The LightBoard brings a modern, and an innovative, trailblazing cutting- edge feel,” says Gupta.

Taylor says that he will continue using The LightBoard Depot Inc. and he is encouraging everyone to try out the technology.

“It’s easy, simple and fun and is far more effective than boring power-points and slides on a Zoom call,” says Taylor. “Once you use this technology, there is no going back. You will want to use it forever.”