Global Classroom

How does a residential university like Notre Dame, known for its outstanding teaching, bring those strengths to the world of online education and distance learning? Elliott Visconsi, Chief Academic Digital Officer, and the Office of Information Technologies (OIT) worked together to create a new distance learning environment called the Global Classroom that resides within ND Studios’ Teaching Studio at the Martin Media Center.

The new learning space was designed to:

  • Create a space that feels familiar to instructors who normally teach face-to-face.
  • Encourage movement and energy. Instructors can teach sitting, standing, or walking.
  • Remove technical barriers for the instructors so they can focus on teaching.
  • A technical assistant from ND Studios will control all aspects of the production from connecting to your Zoom meeting, managing participants, and controlling the layout of the Zoom windows.

“Using the Global Classroom allowed me to interact with students around the world in a much more impactful way. I've used the classroom to teach an online course to Notre Dame undergraduates spread around the world participating in internships and study abroad programs. In a recent class, I had students join live from Denmark, Brussels, Hong Kong, South Africa, and right here in South Bend.”

—Dr. Mike Chapple, Academic Director, Master of Science in Business Analytics


"The Office of Digital Learning and ND Studios supported me unremittingly for the online class that I taught in the global classroom. With their support, the global classroom closed the distance between me and the students. Here, you can lean into the students and push them to their limits just as you could in a classroom on campus. I recommend this unique experience!"
-Kay Malte Bischof, Department of Philosophy

The physical space includes:

  • A large monitor for Zoom’s gallery view that is always in view even when sharing content with students.
  • Zoom’s list of participants and chat on two separate screens, that is also visible at all times to see raised hands, questions, and who’s speaking.
  • An auto-tracking camera to follow the instructor as they move around the room. 
  • A touch screen computer for sharing presentations with the ability to draw and annotate easily.
  • Standard classroom equipment: connect a personal computer, document camera, whiteboard.