Digital signage in schools is an effective way to communicate messages to students and staff. Although this is commonly seen in retail environments, educational facilities can also take advantage of the benefits this technology provides.
Schools, colleges and universities all need to be able to clearly communicate any updates to their students and staff to ensure that learning is not disrupted. Unlike paper posters on bulletin boards, which can be easily missed and ignored, digital signage will catch the attention of anyone walking by. In fact, 96% of students notice digital signage immediately and can recall its content. This is likely why nearly 70% of colleges in the US have installed digital displays.
By using digital signage you will be able to better inform your students of important school information which they will be more likely to retain than if you were using traditional print media. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of digital signage in schools and why you should be using it.
One of the main factors holding many schools back from implementing a digital signage solution is the initial cost. Budgets are often quite tight which makes this a tricky hurdle to overcome when you are looking at available options. However, it is possible that adding digital signage could save your school money.
The average school in the UK will use 1 million sheets of paper a year and spend £60,000 on photocopying. While in the US, an average school spend $3,000-$4,000 monthly on paper, ink and toner. A digital display doesn’t require paper or ink to function, so you’ll not have the continued cost of replenishing them to produce the content of your communications.
Hardware such as video walls or freestanding kiosks, like seen below, just require a one-off payment and then you can display any content you have prepared. You can also change the content displayed freely without the required printing and copying costs. It won’t take long for you to have saved the amount you spent buying your display.
To get the most out of your screen you’ll want to link it to a digital signage platform. This is a tool that helps you to schedule and create your content. There are both free and paid options available, more on digital signage platforms will be explained below.
Depending on the digital signage software you choose to use you’ll find the usability and features available will vary. The best platforms are easy to use, which means anyone at your school could use them to produce and display content. For example, if a teacher wanted to remind students of their homework assignments, they would be able to create a message to be displayed on screens near their classroom.
PeakSignage is a good example of one of the best digital signage software when it comes to ease of use. A big part of this is the drag-and-drop editor, seen below. You choose a widget from the selection menu, this could be an image, video stream, social media feed etc, and then drag that onto the canvas and place it where you’d like it to appear. Then you just need to select the specific image, for example, and it will appear. Once your design is ready, you can instantly display this on any of your chosen screens.
You’ll also be looking for affordable options that fit your school’s budget. There are various free and paid digital signage software that can provide you with everything you need for the budget you have in mind. If you are looking for guidance on which solutions to look out for, check out this blog post that lists seven tools that could help you bring digital signage to your school.
Increase your reach
Something you may have noticed with your paper and printed communications, such as leaflets and posters, is that your students and staff don’t take notice of them and they fail to effectively communicate your messages. Are your students likely to read printed handouts or take them home? A significant reason behind this is that how people consume media has changed. In 2020, the average person spent 474 minutes a day viewing digital media. Your students are accustomed to digesting information on a screen rather than through printed materials.
Smartphones will be the most common method of viewing media for your students, so providing a similar experience will help to increase the reach of your communications. A digital screen, video wall or freestanding kiosk, shown below, all offer this, as they are essentially just bigger versions of smartphone screens.
On top of this, placing a digital screen in a place that was typically empty will immediately draw the attention of your staff and students. The brightness of the screen and the movement or animations in your content, which a digital screen can provide and print media cannot, will further help to make your content stand out and your messages much more memorable.
With traditional print media, if something changed suddenly or you noticed an error, you’d have to wait for new versions to be printed. This would mean either leaving the originals up and providing your students and staff with incorrect information or taking them down and not communicating your message at all during this time.
A digital signage solution allows you to adapt quickly as there is no need to wait for printing. If your content needs to be changed, you can quickly access your signage software and update the content. For example, if there is a sudden room change for a lesson you’d be able to create a message to be displayed on the nearest screen to the original classroom to inform students and staff of this change. The screen would then immediately update to show your new message. You’d have no downtime while the content changes. As a result, you can reduce any disruption to learning that would have been caused in this situation by providing up-to-date information to large groups quickly and easily.
Another benefit of using digital signage schools is the ability to schedule content. For example, if you have a school assembly at 11 AM you would not want your screens to display messages about this after that time. The scheduling feature on your chosen digital signage software will allow you to set when the next piece of content begins to be displayed on your screens. You and your admin team won’t have to take the time to adjust the content as it will automatically update according to what you have scheduled. You can also change your schedule at any time meaning you can be flexible in what content you have lined up, unlike print media which locks you in once you have gone to print.
Improve learning of current affairs
Depending on the size of your screens you may have room to include a range of content at the same time. A good way to utilise any extra space on digital signage in schools is by including world news content. This can be done in a few ways such as a social media feed of national and local newspapers, streams of news channels such as Sky News and BBC News or a news ticker along the bottom of the screen. You’ll be able to add these using your digital signage solution, for example in PeakSIgnage you’d simply need to drag the appropriate widget onto your content canvas and then link your chosen news source.
Having this content in place will help to keep your students informed of current events and can help to spark debate and discussions in class. In addition, this gives your students real-world context to the topics they are currently learning about.
Ready to add the benefits of a digital signage solution to your educational facility?
You can find out about our digital signage platform, PeakSignage, here.
LamasaTech is a leader in digital display technology with over 12 years of experience. We support customers across a range of industries including retail, military and defence, government and public sector, technology, hospitality and education, contact us today!