WebEx Goes Social on the University Level
November 21, 2012
By Michelle Amodio
, TMCnet Contributor
Cisco (News - Alert) has been busy with the launch of its latest version of WebEx, the Web conferencing solution for virtual sharing, and recently went social for higher education.
The latest inception of WebEx, aptly known as WebEx Social for Higher Education, uses the cloud so that students can stay on top of their classes even when a life instance prohibits their physical presence. The new platform combines social networking, content creation and real-time communications so that professors can record lectures for later access, initiate curriculum setup, access course registration and manage courseware.
“A student who needs to return home mid-semester because of chemotherapy can even present a paper and take questions from the professor and classmates,” said John Tuohy, education solutions manager at Cisco.
“Fortunately, not being able to come to the classroom no longer has to interrupt continuity of learning,” added Dr. Greg Mathison, manager of education solutions at Cisco.
WebEx Social for Higher Education integrates WebEx Social, WebEx Meetings and WebEx Messenger, and is delivered through the Cisco WebEx Collaboration Cloud. WebEx Social, which formerly had been called Cisco Quad, is an enterprise relevant products/services collaboration platform that integrates social networking, content relevant products/services creation and real-time communications.
Cisco worked closely with academic leaders from Duke University, North Carolina State University, Case Western Reserve and University of Chicago on the development of the WebEx Social for Higher Education offer to ensure its applicability and effectiveness in the education sector. All four institutions have been piloting the system, with Duke readying to extend it throughout its community over the next few weeks.
"We're always looking for open, affordable and easily extensible collaboration tools that can help to bring our vibrant and diverse community together, even when they are separated by time or place. Cisco was willing to work closely with us to truly understand the needs of the Duke community, and to find ways to meet those needs through the WebEx Social for Higher Education offering. As a result, we're bringing something unique and powerful to Duke, and by extension to higher education more broadly,” said Tracy Futhey, vice president for information technology and chief information officer, Duke University.
Since it’s still in the testing stages, there’s no definitive availability date.
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Edited by Rachel Ramsey