College students are in the zone

thisisoxfordshire: Travel and tourism students Rosie Morton, left, and Amy Lynch with coach Laura Stephenson Buy this photo » Travel and tourism students Rosie Morton, left, and Amy Lynch with coach Laura Stephenson

NEW £1m state-of-the-art technology has been unveiled at one of the county’s biggest colleges.

Students at Oxford & Cherwell Valley College (OCVC) are now able to benefit from 11 ‘learning zones’ across the college’s four sites.

Each zone is kitted out with iPads, laptops, Apple TVs, wireless headphones and the ability to video conference with other students.

College bosses say the facilities mean all students have access to the very latest technology.

Five zones are at the college’s Oxford campus, with six more in Banbury and Bicester.

Travel and tourism student Rosie Morton, 18, from Wheatley, said: “The learning zones offer a more relaxing environment in which to do individual study and research.

“They also give everyone access to the same facilities, which is good. It means that no-one is disadvantaged when it comes to technology.”

Fellow student Amy Lynch, 17, from Thame, added: “The zones give you more motivation to study during free periods because you have access to the most up-to-date technology.

“We have been using the iPads to look at job opportunities after we finish our course, to explore the types of career we could move into.”

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Vice principal Ian Francis said: “As a further education provider we want to equip our students with contemporary skills.

“That includes being able to use the latest technology and harness its benefits to improve communication and the way information is accessed and presented.”

The areas also include internet access and air play printers and keyboards. It is hoped video conferencing will allow students from different campuses to communicate and work with each other.

A member of staff for each zone will support students using the technology. Mr Francis said: “These are technologies being used in business and we want our students to leave college with high levels of digital literacy.

“The new learning zones will not only improve students’ learning as they study with us but also help to give them the edge over their peers.”

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