Button that says Implementation and takes you to the implementation page in the teacher section of the website.
Button that says Activities and takes you to the Activities page.
Button that says Videos and takes you to the Videos page.
Button that says Schedule Barrel and takes you to Schedule Barrell page.
Button that says VideoConferencing.
Button that says Nationaal Standards and takes you to the National Standards page.

Button that says Return To Epic Journey and takes you to the Main page.


After your students research the problem presented in the scenario, you have the option of conducting a videoconference between them and a very special member of the Center for Educational Technologies®.

During the videoconference your students can present their recommendations on which artifacts work best for the museum display to none other than Meriwether Lewis himself. Well, actually it's a Meriwether Lewis reenactor who works at the center. He plays the role well and brings the history of the expedition to life. The videoconference is worth the effort for your students.

If you are interested in conducting a videoconference, contact us at lewisclark@cet.edu. You must schedule the event at least two weeks in advance.

In order to conduct the videoconference, your classroom should have Internet access. From your classroom you should also be able to transmit and receive audio and video communication. This can be accomplished with an H.323 IP videoconferencing unit (for example, Sony Contact or Polycom Viewstation) or an integrated services digital network (ISDN) videoconferencing Codec (for example, PictureTel, VTel Galaxy, or ProShare) connected to the network.

An ISDN is a digital phone service. It allows you to place calls that are digital end to end as long as the person you are calling also has ISDN. Using ISDN is a little more complicated than just hooking up to the Internet. You must consider several issues:

  1. Speed — Each ISDN line supports a data transmission rate of 128,000 bits per second (128 kbps).
  2. Standards — Many ISDN-based videoconference systems have established standards in their products. This allows products from different manufacturers to call each other.
    • H.320 is used by many manufacturers as a front-end protocol to communicate with other systems. To use H.320, both ends must support it.
    • H.323 videoconferencing products are used for communicating over the Internet. Sign language conversations can fluctuate in quality on a call because the data rate is not dedicated to the end-to-end smooth transmission of data, as is the case with ISDN. However, many more deaf people have Internet and high-speed lines than have ISDN service, so availability is an important factor.
    • H.263 and H.261 are two widely used compression standards in videoconferencing that exist within the main video call standards (H.320, H.323, etc.). H.261 is older than H.263. Video performance will increase using H.263 over the same transmission rates. Avoid using H.261 unless the data transmission is very high (384k or greater) and H.263 is not available. Be sure to have H.263 support in H.320 standard. You may see H.263 for H.323 (Internet) only in some systems.
  3. Call Progress — A common frustration to the caller is not knowing if the receiving station is busy or is not answering. A display indicating the progress of the call (ringing, busy, etc.) would be a helpful feature.
  4. Self-Viewing Video — Leaving a small self-viewing video window in a corner of the screen can affect receiving video performance because of the CPUs being overwhelmed. A good example is the PC-based VTel system. The receiving window will look a lot better with higher frames per second when the self-viewing video window is closed. Some systems do fine with the self-viewing window on.

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Image of the WV Humanities Council logo.This project is being presented by the Center for Educational Technologies with financial assistance from The West Virginia Humanities Council, a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.