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Engaging Teaching and Learning Experiences Using Lightboard Technology


This Learning Enhancement project has been funded through the HEA and the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning.

PROJECT TITLE: Engaging Teaching and Learning Experiences Using Lightboard Technology
PROJECT COORDINATOR: Dr Jamie O'Neill & Ms Elanor McDonald
STUDENT COHORT: Undergraduate and Postgraduate students of the College of Business


Having been introduced to lightboard technology via the Educause network, the Business eLearning team, in the College of Business, had been aiming to procure the technology for some time. The team had identified a need from academic colleagues for a technology to capture hand written content while retaining student engagement in the classroom. This was of particular importance to those academics from quantitative disciplines, such as accountancy, finance and MIS, who created a lot of hand transcribed content for students in the classroom. In addition, some staff in these subject areas wanted an easy way to create recorded content that could be delivered asynchronously to students and consumed in a self-paced manner.

The team felt that a lightboard would be a great fit for both of these needs, as content could be easily recorded and as the tool is moveable, could be using the classroom for live transcribing, especially useful in large auditoriums.

Elanor McDonald from Business eLearning and Dr Jamie O’Neill from the Accountancy subject area in the College of Business, submitted a funding proposal for the lightboard in 2019 under the Learning Enhancement Projects from the Higher Education Authority and the National Forum.


The initial aim for the lightboard was that it would be used in live, face-to-face classes in the large auditorium in the Moore Centre for Business. Dr O’Neill had intended to use the technology in his undergraduate module, Financial Accounting 3 as a pilot for classroom use. Outside of class time, the lightboard was to be installed in the recording studio in the Moore Centre for Business, where staff could record content using the lightboard, which would be shared with students via their modules on Brightspace.

The Innovative Approach

Having achieved the funding, the lightboard arrived in July 2020, being purchased from Revolution Lightboards in the US. The lightboard was self-assembled in our recording studio over the period of 2 days. Dr. O’Neill was the first of our academic colleagues to use the lightboard, recording content for his stage 3 accountancy module shortly after its assembly. The initial plan to use the lightboard in the classroom was curtailed due to the restriction on in-person teaching during the pandemic. With the advent of the pandemic and the move to emergency remote teaching some academic colleagues moved to using the technology in order to deliver their online classes.




After the government announcement in September 2020 requiring all teaching to move online again, some academic colleagues moved to using the lightboard, in conjunction with Collaborate Ultra (our VC tool) to deliver their modules. In particular, Dr Julie Byrne moved her large undergraduate, stage 2 finance module with an enrolment of 520 students to delivery via the lightboard.

In Dr Byrne’s case she had already started to deliver the module using the lecture capture live stream but changed to the lightboard mode of delivery in the 2nd week of teaching. In order to confirm which method of delivery the students preferred Julie surveyed them at the beginning of the module once they experience both styles of deliveries and asked them to choose which one they preferred.

Students overwhelmingly opted for the delivery in the recording studio using the lightboard and Collaborate Ultra. Professor Roland Erne used the lightboard board to deliver not only his stage 3 and stage 4 IRHE modules but continued to use the tool for conference presentations and as a guest lecturer in shared module with Cornell University.


See Lightboard in use.

The Business eLearning team would be happy to share their ongoing experience of using the lightboard in the College of Business.

You can also refer to experiences of Matt Anderson at San Diego State University and Michael Peshkin at Northwestern University, who developed the tool initially, by visiting their website.