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Case Studies - Education / Kansai University Elementary School Cromer Public School

Motivation for Installation

The Kansai University Elementary School was established in 2010 as the university's first elementary school. The Elementary School was considering the introduction of an exchange learning program that would aim at improving the communication skills of the students under the concept that "international understanding = cultural exchange." In the past, cultural exchanges with Hawaiian schools were conducted using videophones, but the images appeared grainy, it was difficult to see the facial expressions of the other students, and poor sound quality and delays made it difficult to hear pronunciation, which is one of the most important aspects of language learning. In addition, the phone line would often disconnect, making it hard to conduct classes. In order to solve these problems, the school began to search for a new system. The opportunity arose to view a demonstration of the HD Visual Communications System at the Panasonic Center in Osaka. Impressed by the lifelike ambience, which made it feel like everyone was right in the same room, school staff soon started considering the concrete aspects of introducing the system.

The Kansai University Elementary School upholds a basic philosophy of cultivating strong and agile levels of humanity in people while helping them to maintain high ethical standards and dignity. As a model school for the remote international exchange class support system, we have received the cooperation of Cromer Public School. During our fourth grade English classes (twice a week on Mondays and Thursdays), we hold real-time conversations with students from Australia by connecting the HD Visual Communications System for the first 15 minutes of the 45-minute class.

System Selection Points

Compared to conventional videoconference systems, the strong point of the Panasonic HD Visual Communications System is that it is extremely high in quality and provides an extremely high level of realism (high image and sound quality, plus minimal interruptions). Teachers who actually operated the system on-site provided very positive feedback. They said it was very easy to use, and because there were no bothersome procedures like logging in for each connection, the system was ready to use as soon as they turned it on. In addition, the system was praised for its convenience as it lets you connect with people by simply calling them when the class begins. Students lose motivation if a system is too complicated to set up, so while image quality is important, connecting and disconnecting the system are also vital points.

(Kansai University Elementary School in Japan)
Students from both schools interact.

(Cromer Public School in Australia)
It almost feels like everyone is in the same room.

Installation Effect

Conversing with overseas students while watching each other in real-time has greatly increased the students' motivation. One student commented that there is a huge difference between this method and simply reading books and watching package media, both for learning English and for developing an interest in and an understanding of a different culture. In particular, it is essential in a language class that the other person's voice, including pronunciation, be clearly audible. It is also vital for elementary school students to include gestures in their communication and to be able to read the emotions that other people relay through facial expressions. In that aspect, we are extremely satisfied with the high image and sound quality that the HD Visual Communications System brings to our overseas exchange classes. Also, after connecting and conducting an exchange lesson, a video recording and distribution system is used to do an immediate review. This is an important part of retaining English skills.

Mr. Umemoto
Head of the Educational Theory
and Elementary English Dept.
Kansai University Elementary School

System Configuration and Operation

Installed System

  • HD Visual Communications Unit (KX-VC500 + Boundary Microphone)
  • HD Camcorder
  • Digital Video Camera
  • Plasma Display
  • A lecture recording and distribution system (sold only in Japan)