A BENDIGO university professor has been nationally recognised for his use of innovative technology in the classroom.
La Trobe's senior physics lecturer Dr Russell Anderson has won an AFR Higher Education Awards in the Education Technology category.
The award recognises his Lightboard Studio - a world-first multi-function studio which features a giant plane of glass between the speaker and the camera.
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There are LED lights along the side of the glass, which makes it appear as if the lecturer is writing in mid air.
There is also a green screen in the studio, which allows lecturers to superimpose PowerPoints or other visuals in the classes.
The project was funded late last year, with Dr Anderson installing the technology at the Bendigo campus over the summer period.
Dr Anderson said he was absolutely thrilled to be recognised at the AFR Higher Education Awards.
"I was a bit humbled when I saw the other applicants," he said. "There were some other really innovative submissions that looked at helping frontline health workers.
"But it was nice to see that teaching in the pandemic had the same recognition."
Dr Anderson said the award had been well-received in his department at La Trobe, as well as the university's leadership team.
"As a national teaching award, it's really as good as it gets," Dr Anderson said. "It means we get our just recognition for being national leaders in responsive education.
"We have been adapting to new work and how we're doing things - it's not just a video chat for students, but something really immersive."
Dr Anderson said the recognition could help the university roll out the technology to La Trobe's other campuses or even other institutions.
"We're already doing this collaborative effort across Victoria," he said. "We hope to take it national."
While the AFR did not have an official ceremony for the Higher Education Awards due to COVID-19 restrictions, Dr Anderson said he would still celebrate.
"I will at least be getting on the Zoom call with my co-applicant and having a couple of beers," he said.
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