2 The lecture series
3 Statements on IT provision
3.1 University Management
3.2 The Department
3.3 The Students
"Digital Futures": A Case Study in a Faculty of Art & Design
3 Statements on Lecture Theatre I.T. provision
3.2 Faculty of Art & Design: Department of Visual and Performing Arts
3.2.1 Joint Statement by Professor Simon Lewis (Head of Department of Visual
and Performing Arts) and Mr David Hughes (Coordinator of Department of Visual & Performing Arts Electives)
No separate statement was forthcoming from 3 Faculty sources invited to
contribute - Dean's Office, Faculty Administrator's Office, Faculty IT
Committee. The joint statement by the Head of Department and Electives
Coordinator outlines the Departmental structure and the particular concerns and
demands of administrating and coordinating the demands of courses with an
over-riding concern for and with 'the image'. It also details technical
developments which have occurred and draws comparisons with 'a model lecture
theatre'. Note that Mr Hughes was not in post during the period of this Case
Study and his appointment from February 1998 was partly in response to some of
the organisational and logistical difficulties recorded by Electives in
Semester 1; he is Module Leader for Contemporary Studies (a lecture based
Report on IT Provision in Lecture Theatres
With Specific Reference to the Needs of Visual and Performing Arts and the
Bonington Lecture Theatre, Nottingham Trent University.
The Department of Visual and Performing Arts is made up of a number of named
degree courses: Fine Art, Photography, Photography in Europe, Contemporary Arts
(including performance, dance, visual arts and music),Theatre Design and
Television Production Design. The IT needs of lecturers within the department
are quite particular. Essentially, the accumulated subjects of scrutiny,
intellectual and formal interests of the named degrees demands that there is a
very wide range of media available to assist in the delivery of lectures. It is
the case that almost all the lectures conducted in the Bonington Lecture
Theatre, the department's main lecture venue, require more than one item of
audio visual equipment.
It is not possible, however, to extract IT straightforwardly from this range of
multi-media audio visual teaching aids as though it were a special case.
Currently it stands alongside other more traditional media as a carrier of
images and information. However, it will become increasingly important and
dominant as it becomes the primary medium for image, information and event. In
future, the digital medium will, most likely, carry all the information
currently carried in analogue, print or photo-chemical media. The connections
to the Internet, the bookless library (library without walls), on-line
'dialogues' and research facilities make computers an essential element within
this suite of resources to support the delivery of lectures and workshops
The main element dealt with across the department is the visual image, whether
moving or static. This ranges from video documentation of one-off site specific
work all the way over to a projection of a 35mm slide of an existing piece of
2-dimensional painting. However, it is frequently the case that in core, degree
programme lectures or in departmental electives, it is necessary to move
between the visual image, the video image, recorded sound and, increasingly, a
Web site or CD-ROM. Any lecture concerned with interdisciplinary will usually
make reference to sound, video, performance and static visual art or
installation work. Consequently, a flexible system for moving between these
sources is necessary.
Increasingly, as all this information moves towards the digital medium, all of
these images and documents will be held within and generated from within
When Dr Smith's Digital Futures elective module ran earlier this academic year,
most of the resources needed had to be brought in and plugged through the video
projector temporarily. We are now in a position in the Bonington Lecture
Theatre to provide all the requirements of that module and other lectures
demanding multi media support, through a suite of permanently installed items.
This suite comprises computer with zip and CD-ROM, video players, monitors and
projector, 35mm slide projectors, two 16mm film projectors and cassette and
reel to reel audio. DAT and CD players are still brought in on a temporary
In the Lady Djanogly Lecture Theatre in the new Boots Library, there is a model
lecture theatre which suggests what the current state of affairs should be
within our main departmental lecture theatre. The entire system is operated by
the speaker from a touchscreen console which co-ordinates tape, DAT, Minidisks
and CDs in a sound stack, two slide projectors which operate singly, in tandem
or in phase through the agency of a slide dissolve unit, a Wolf Visualiser
which operates as both epidiascope and OHP, a video projector through which all
the digital sources can be routed and an Internet connected Pentium 200
computer which can run Powerpoint and interactive CD-ROMS.
The main difference at the moment between these two lecture theatres is the
ability of the speaker to control the whole suite of technical resources from
the lectern through a touchscreen and items of hardware such as DAT's which are
not permanently installed in Bonington. Caught between being funded by the
Faculty and Academic Accommodation, funding for developments in the lecture
theatre are slow, but they do progress and in terms of IT, the Bonington
Lecture Theatre can now function very well.
Prof Simon Lewis, Head of Department of Visual and Performing Arts & Mr
David Hughes, Coordinator Departmental Electives
3.2.2 Statement by Mr Gerry Young, Principal Technician Department of Visual
& Performing Arts with Faculty responsibility for the Bonington Lecture
Mr Young's statement is primarily concerned with the quality of
presentation (for students and staff). He briefly relates the development of
IT equipment in Bonington, its upgrades both recent and projected.
From: Gerry Young :Ext 2377
To: Barry Smith :Ref
Date: 30 April 1998
IT Provision in Lecture Theatres.
I feel that there are two aspects to this, the first is the matter of the
presentation of lectures. Current software (such as Powerpoint) enables a
lecturer to present information in a very professional way and in a form that
has much greater consistency than hand-written work on chalk or whiteboards.
Preparation of the ?slides? for these shows is relatively easy and quick,
certainly much more so than the traditional 35mm slides, and in most cases
requires no external professional input, it can be done by the lecturer
Equally important in an Art & Design environment is the presentation of
students work. With the increasing importance of digitally derived or
manipulated imagery within our students work it is vital that facilities are
available within our Lecture Theatres ( and in general teaching and seminar
rooms where possible) to display this work as part of a teaching programme.
This aspect requires that we have an IT facility which is at least as powerful
as the machines used for the generation of the work in the first place.
The Bonington Lecture Theatre was equipped with a Barco data projector about
four years ago, this was the best model available at the time, capable of the
highest resolutions and scan rates available, and remains up to date in its
capabilities. Efforts to compromise the specification at the time of purchase
were resisted. A computer has been installed recently which should cope with
the work that is being produced at the present time and should be good enough
for the foreseeable future. The computer is a PC compatible, but most
application software in use in the Faculty is available for both PC and MAC
formats, with file format commonality, so there should be no problem with work
generated on a MAC. The facility is available to plug in a MAC relatively
simply when required.
Care needs to be taken in the future to keep the facility up to date and
foresee as far as possible any improvements needed, perhaps this could be a
regular agenda item for the Faculty IT group. At the moment we have only one
portable projector in the department capable of limited data projection for use
in other teaching areas although a second is under consideration. The
price\performance ratio is still coming down for this equipment and we need to
keep an eye on the possibilities of extending this provision.
3.2.3 Statement by Mr Des Gearing, Bonington Lecture Theatre
Mr Gearing outlines the developments which have taken place in the Bonington
Lecture Theatre, the provision during the 'Digital Futures' series and
anticipated future developments. The statement concludes with a List of
Bonington Lecture Theatre equipment (as of February 1998) prepared by Mr
TECHNICAL I.T. SUPPORT FOR THE DIGITAL FUTURES LECTURES
The Digital Futures' series of lectures were delivered in the Bonington Lecture
Theatre which is one of sixteen lecture theatres at the City site of Nottingham
Trent University. The projection room of the theatre still contains analogue
audio sound and older systems of visual projection which are still used on a
regular basis. The challenge has been to incorporate the latest digital
technology into a user-friendly multi-media facility to accommodate the diverse
nature of the faculty of art and design.
Bonington Theatre has been transformed in the provision of information
technology digitalsupport for lectures. It now has, as its centre piece, a
Barco 800 graphics video projection system which is capable of receiving
analogue video and digital information from a variety of different sources such
as U-matic and SVHS video cassette recorders and P.C. or Apple Macintosh format
The Barco projection system is permanently installed and displays its
presentations on a motorised screen approximately 5 x 4 metres in size, which
is installed at the front of the lecture theatre.
The provision of such equipment was vital to the delivery of the Digital
Futures series of lectures as it provided both innovative and informative I.T.
digital information by linking via an interface to a laptop P.C. situated at
the lectern to the Barco projector system and linking the laptop P.C. to the
University network system which, in turn, incorporates access to the internet.
With the variety of software available from the P.C. and linking to the
internet, this gave the widest possible access to digital information
technology and displayed it on the large screen giving maximum visual impact to
The theatre also incorporates a four-speaker stereo sound system which, when
linked to the P.C. at the lectern, facilitates the use of compact discs played
via the computer to compliment the visual aspects of the lectures, as was the
case in this series of lectures.
The Bonington Theatre continues to evolve and it is envisaged that by Easter
1998 a new lectern will be installed which will have a permanently installed
P.C. with CD and zip drive and a video cassette recorder. This will alleviate
the need to temporarily connect computers at the lectern and will complete the
range of IT support available in Bonington Theatre.
Technical Specifications for the Bonington Lecture Theatre: April 1998
Hi grade Axion PV fitted with a P200 200 MHZ micro processor and composite
video output was provided via a PVZTV graphics card port utilising RS232
protocol (bytes are sent with 8 bits, no priority, stop bit, at 4800
The interface between computer and projector was provided via an "inline" 2080
computer composite video interface for PS2 computers and has an operating
frequency of 65KHZ to 90KHZ which is fed to the barco projection system in RGB
and sync format.
The barco 800 projector used a remote controlled video and data source selector
(RCVDS 800) which makes it possible to select any of 10 sources connected to
the projector, communication cables used were RSZ32/422 which communicates
between projector and the RCVDS 800.
Projector specifications were set and used as follows:
scan frequency horizontal 15-90KHZ autolock
vertical 45-120 KHZ autolock
Retrace time horizontal 2-5 seconds
vertical 200 seconds
RGB Bandwidth 6MHZ phase lock looped
Optical Resolution 10 1p/mm
Light Output 825 Lumen at 10% peak white
575 Lumen at 20 peak white
CRTS High definition liquid cooled 8" CRTS
Lenses High definition full colour corrected F1-06 hybrid lenses.