What is a Virtual Classroom? Its Definition, Features & Benefits | BrainCert

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Providing one-line definitions for virtual classroom platforms can be tricky. Even those who work in the online teaching industry or those who use virtual classrooms every day.
Although you can choose to define a virtual classroom as a virtual replica of a traditional classroom, we recommend that you do not do so. We believe that the virtual classroom platform is all-encompassing, and marking it as a virtual copy of a traditional classroom does not do justice to it.
That is why we decided to write this article to explain in detail the definition, characteristics and meaning of virtual classrooms. Chapter
Come on!
What is a virtual classroom? The
virtual classroom, as the name suggests, is a virtual learning environment in which students can interact with tutors online.
Contrary to popular belief, not all virtual classroom environments are supervised (synchronized). In contrast, the virtual classroom environment can also be unsupervised (asynchronous), and students can consult and view course content at their own pace without restriction.
Although the learning environment on the virtual classroom platform is usually based on network meetings, there are also dedicated virtual classroom platforms specifically designed for teaching and learning. These dedicated virtual classroom platforms are bundled with functions that provide a collaborative learning environment. What are the characteristics of the
virtual classroom?
Although the virtual learning environment originated from online meetings, the platform used in the virtual learning environment has been modified to better suit the teaching process.
These are some outstanding features of virtual classrooms.
1. Videoconferencing
The virtual classroom environment is not just a webinar – in this type of webinar, students are passive listeners when the lecturer speaks. Rather, it is a dynamic environment in which all participants can interact with each other to create a collaborative learning environment, which is equivalent to the environment of a physical classroom.
This is the advantage of having a dedicated virtual classroom platform. For example, a dedicated virtual classroom platform allows all participants and tutors to connect their webcams and microphones in series. This helps the teacher to have an indication to get visual cues on how the student is learning the lesson, while allowing the student to interact with each other. The
virtual classroom platform (such as that provided by BrainCert) uses the most advanced webRTC technology to stream audio and video content to achieve real-time audio/video streaming with lowest latency, high availability, and stable connectivity.
2. Integrated digital whiteboard
Like the whiteboard in the traditional classroom, the virtual classroom platform is also equipped with an integrated digital whiteboard, which plays a vital role in the virtual classroom environment. These interactive whiteboards allow teachers to outline ideas/concepts so that students can better understand them, just like in a traditional classroom.
whiteboards, such as the BrainCert virtual classroom, also allow content to be combined in video, image, and document formats to help teachers better communicate concepts.
3. Compatibility between devices The main advantage of the
virtual learning environment is the flexibility it provides due to the compatibility between its devices. All teachers and students need is a stable Internet connection.
4. Cloud recording
Cloud recording is a very needed feature in virtual classrooms, which allows teachers to record classroom sessions. As mentioned earlier, the virtual classroom environment can be synchronous or asynchronous. The cloud recording function on the
virtual classroom platform can help teachers record classroom sessions in real time with one click. These recordings can be stored in the cloud for students to access later.
Compared to recording a course in a physical classroom environment, recording a virtual course is like walking in the park.
5. Breakout room
The whole idea that the
virtual classroom platform is much better than the online conference platform revolves around the expansion of the collaboration features provided by the former. The conference room is one of the collaboration functions provided by the virtual classroom platform.
With the help of the meeting room function, teachers can divide students into groups to promote peer participation or brainstorming.
6. Can be integrated with LMS
Most virtual classroom platforms can be easily integrated with new or existing LMS. Although this has nothing to do with the virtual classroom environment, it is a beneficial feature of asynchronous learning.
By integrating the virtual classroom platform with LMS, teachers can easily schedule real-time courses, track student progress/participation, attendance, take exams, etc. This is especially useful for educational institutions and organizations.
7. Centralized control
Whether it is a traditional classroom or a virtual classroom, it is very important for teachers to fully control the classroom environment. This is what the web conferencing platform is missing.
For example, in a web conferencing platform, the teacher does not have the option to control the functions of the platform participants. In the case of a virtual classroom platform, teachers can fully control features such as mute / unmute the microphone and disable private chats.
Now that we have discussed some salient features of the virtual classroom environment, let’s take a look at their importance. 5 benefits of
virtual classrooms
virtual classrooms are indeed a major event in the e-learning industry. Its commendable role in democratizing educational opportunities has increased its popularity.
The following are the top 5 advantages of virtual classrooms.
1. Flexibility
Compared to traditional teaching methods of learning in a physical classroom environment, the virtual classroom platform provides flexibility for students and teachers. As mentioned above, virtual classrooms can be synchronous or asynchronous. Teachers can choose to post course content online at their convenience, and students can access the materials 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Chapter

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