ACCelerating Learning for STEM Students

Austin Community College (ACC) is rethinking how it is engaging students by personalizing the learning experience to prepare for the challenges of the 21st-century workforce. In the fall, ACC opened its beautiful, new campus at the old Highland Mall in central Austin.  Dell partnered with ACC to create a digital-learning environment that supports students and faculty with the tools and access they need to be successful.

ACC concurrently launched a new campus that reinvented the idea of a college campus, introduced cutting-edge technology, and overhauled a core curriculum using adaptive learning.  The campus opened with a headcount of 3,700 students.  The ACCelerator was the home of 46 sections – 750 students – for the redesigned developmental math course known as MATD 0421. 

The 30,000 square foot ACCelerator, the centerpiece of the new campus, provides access to 600+ virtualized Dell Wyse thin clients for individualized learning and small group sessions.  It also contains small group study rooms, tutoring, classrooms, and academic coaching.  Instructors from all areas take advantage of being able to schedule on-demand space for hands-on, collaborative activities using the computer resources to facilitate learning.   

Throughout the space, there are over 360 Dell Optiplex, 140 Latitude laptops, an additional 200 Wyse stations and 105 Venue 7 tablets that will run the digital library and be able to be checked-out by students and used as e-readers. Dell is also powering the back-end VMWare View VDI environment, powered by PowerEdge R720 servers, Force 10 switches, and runs off an EqualLogic PS6210XS SAN.

The new lab will give students access to campus resources and applications from anywhere through desktop virtualization technology and Dell Wyse thin and zero clients and a robust network infrastructure. Dell is proud to help ACC support the advancement of STEM for Austin Community College students with flexible, cutting-edge technology that encourages new forms of personalized and engaged learning.  Check out the new video on the ACCelerator here.

And, on March 9, hear ACC students, faculty, and administrators at SXSWedu explain how the ACCelerator is changing teaching and learning. The link to the session is here.  

About the Author: Jen Sigmund