This post contributed by John Born, SFU
Brent McIntosh and Terri Bateman recently gave a T.E.L.L. session about the success and challenges of implementing Microsoft Lync at their institution, North Island College.
Before the upgrade to Lync, the original web conferencing system at North Island College was an Interactive television system they had been running since 1990. They also had several remote parallel systems that could be used for smaller conferencing sessions, but these systems required technicians to provide physical support at their 4 campuses. To avoid having to worry about transportation for technicians, North Island College started to look closer at Lync to help solve their web conferencing issues.
They originally had Lync 2010 already in place at the campus, but it proved to be complicated, because of an incomplete integration with other software and phones systems they were using. The new Lync 2013 with a web client solution helped solve a lot of these problems.
Brent and Terri explained that Lync 2013 allows users to use “presence indicators” for their personal profile, and is proving to be a great resource for collaboration across their campuses for those that didn’t necessarily have a lot of expertise with technology. Users like the ease of Lync web conferencing to quickly reach colleagues, students, and outside users for collaboration. Collaboration is further extended for users with the ability to bring in a document and mark it up together, as well as collaborate directly in One Note. A great benefit is that Office 365 is free for students at North Island College.
Even with the new changes of Lync 2013, Brent and Terri, are looking forward to a new branding of the Microsoft tools as “Skype for business,” which will allow instructors, students and externals to be presented with a more familiar interface.
Please note: Brent and Terri would like to send out a special thinks to Zack Chang, and his Technical powers for setup and integration at North Island College.