NCEF Resource List: Wired and Wireless Networks in Schools
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Information on wired and wireless communications networks in K-12 schools, including standards, design, security, testing, performance, interoperability, and future adaptability.

References to Books and Other Media

Wireless School: Confused Yet?
(District Administration, Dec 06, 2011)
Web seminar covers key decisions and requirements for planning for pervasive wireless in schools; setting goals and deliverables around educational initiatives like digital curriculum, online testing, 1:1 programs and BYOD initiatives; and performance planning and capacity planning for K-12 implementations.

From Zero to Wireless in 4 Essential Steps.
Schaffhauser, Dian
T.H.E. Journal; v38 n2 , p14-16 ; Feb 2011
The way to building a wireless network that's reliable, scalable, and secure enough to support a robust mobile-learning initiative demands taking care of four imperative steps: (1) Get Physical; (2) Separate and Unequal; (3) Mind Your APs; and (4) Speed It Up.

Choosing School Control Panel Features: Simple as A, B, C.
Kessinger, Greg
(, Alpharetta, GA , Jul 2010)
Examines fire alarm technology at two typical schools. The first is a single-story elementary school, the second a college branch campus with three buildings. Wireless technology, networked panels, and the differences between a single- and multiple-building campuses are addressed. 4p.

Classroom of the Future.
(EdTech Planning Group, Mt. Kisco, NY, 2008)
Presents a video tour of a classroom of the future, featuring multiple display screens, flexible furnishings, ample size that allows for circulation, a mobile teacher workstation, abundant power outlets, wireless and video capability, sophisticated zoned lighting, quiet and locally controlled HVAC, and acoustical isolation.

Wireless LANs in Higher Education Adobe PDF
(Meru Networks, 2005)
This discusses the benefits of wireless in higher education to the students and faculty, the institution, and the IT organization. The challenges that a campus environment presents for implementing Wi-Fi technology are explored, including dense user environments throughout the campus, expansive campuses, and security issues. 6p.

Wireless Networking in Schools.
Lightbody, Keith
(ICT in Education, Jun 2004)
Compilation of information on such topics as recent advances, benefits, possible uses, selected products, technical details, health and safety, security, laptop computers, and misconceptions. Includes a glossary and a list of helpful resources.

Why Not Wireless? Adobe PDF
Prouty, Douglas
(Connected Classroom Conference, Long Beach, CA, Dec 06, 2003)
This describes four types of wireless LAN devices, discusses range and security, diagrams what it looks like, and looks at wireless health concerns. 4p.

Introduction to Wireless Technology.
Rogers, Gary S.; Edwards, John Solomon
(Prentice Hall, Jan 2003)
This book provides a comprehensive introduction to all aspects of wireless technology and networking. It covers the history of wireless communications, Wireless Application Protocol, Bluetooth, cellular telephony, public services, wireless LANS, satellite communications, and the Global Positioning System, as well as recent advances in technology. It presents all the major wireless communications technologies in a thorough and non-mathematical manner, providing the reader with the knowledge to understand and apply these technologies to organizations of all types. 560p.

Schools Elevate Student Learning Experience Through Wireless Technology.
Young, Jocelyn
(An IDC White Paper sponsored by Gateway , 2003)
This white paper presents a framework that schools can use to evaluate the benefits of wireless solutions in education. IDC interviewed and developed case studies with 10 educational institutions. Their experiences are highlighted in this paper. Includes a list of best practices for utilizing wireless technology in schools and campuses. [Free registration is required.] 10p.

The Role of Wireless Computing Technology in the Design of Schools. Adobe PDF
Nair, Prakash
(National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities, Washington, DC , Oct 2002)
This document discusses integrating computers logically and affordably into a school building's infrastructure through the use of wireless technology. It begins by discussing why wireless networks using mobile computers are preferable to desktop machines in each classoom. It then explains the features of a wireless local area network (WLAN) and its common standards. The next section provides an update on advances, developments, and concerns in seven key areas: bandwidth, interference, system design and layout, security, network administration, occupant health, and vandalism. The document then addresses the impact of WLANs on learning and on the future of school design, and issues of costs and equitable access. (Contains a glossary of terms, a comparison of wireless standards, a discussion of Bluetooth and 3G, information on one-to-one computing, and 12 references.) 12p.

Wireless Wide Area Networks for School Districts. Adobe PDF
Nair, Prakash
(National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities, Washington, DC , Dec 2001)
Considers a basic question that many schools districts face in attempting to develop affordable, expandable district-wide computer networks that are resistant to obsolescence: Should these wide area networks (WANs) employ wireless technology, stick to venerable hard- wired solutions, or combine both. This publication explores the wireless option to WAN connectivity in educational facilities, examines its advantages and various limitations, and considers interface, security, and reliability issues. The author also examines the aspects of a school district that make it a good candidate for utilizing wireless technology in creating a WAN. Final comments discuss ways to perform a building site survey before deciding to install a wireless WAN, and WAN infrastructure requirements and installation costs.(Contains eight references). 6p.

Guide to Designing and Implementing Wireless LANs
Ciampa, Mark
(Course Technology, Boston, MA, 2001)
This is a hands-on guide to planning, designing, installing and configuring wireless LANs using Cisco and 3Com equipment. 448p.
TO ORDER: Course Technology, 25 Thomson Place, Boston, MA 02210. Tel: 617-757-7900.

Wireless LANs
Geier, Jim
(Sams Publishing, Indianapolis, IN, 2001)
This book helps readers select wireless LAN type from a wide assortment of recent and emerging standards. The book provides an understanding of wireless LAN protocol operations and frame structures. It includes definitions of typical requirements and technology assessment parameters, abd contains case studies and implementation tips. 360p.
TO ORDER: Sams Publishing, 201 West 103rd St., Indianapolis, IN 46290, tel: 317-581-3500

Wireless and Mobile Computing -- 802.11.
Provides a definition of the IEEE 802.11 family of standards for local- and wide-area networks developed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Offers links to many related subjects, including wireless and mobile networking, Ethernet local area networks, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and news and articles about wireless local area networks.

Introduction to Wireless LANs.
(Wireless LAN Alliance, 1999)
This document introduces the benefits, uses, and basic technologies of wireless LANs (WLANs). A WLAN is is an on-premises data communication system that reduces the need for wired connections and makes new applications possible. This describes the business benefits and applications of WLANs and explains how WLANs differ from other wireless technologies. It explains the basic components and technologies of WLANs and how they work together. 10p

Network Design: Best Practices for Alberta School Jurisdictions. Adobe PDF
Schienbein, Ralph
(Alberta Department of Education, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada , 1999)
This report examines a school computer network's performance and capacity planning. The report describes a model that can be used to project WAN (wide area network) connection speeds based on user traffic, describes end-to-end performance issues, characterizes and identifies tools for online analysis, describes how network traffic has an impact on network design as well as computer architectures, and identifies industry trends. A WAN analysis is presented, describing tools, packet size, performance monitor, WAN traffic, WAN equity, shared bandwidth, cache server, multiple WAN connections, subnets, and filters. 110p.
TO ORDER: Learning Resources Distributing Centre, 12360-142 St., Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T5L 4X9; Tel: 780-427-5775

A Guide to Networking for K-12 Schools.
(Northwest Regional Educational Lab., Portland, OR, 1997)
The purpose of this guide is to provide basic networking information and planning assistance for technology coordinators and others involved in building networks for K-12 schools. The information in this guide focuses on the first few steps in the networking process. It reviews planning considerations and network design issues facing educators who need to make intelligent decisions about constantly evolving technologies. Much of the document focuses on developing a sound, standards-based network infrastructure. Material is provided on selecting wire, designing a wiring plan, and related facilities issues. This primer enables the even the "non-techie" to (1) understand network building blocks, (2) ask the right questions and know where to find the answers, (3) identify resources for network planning and design, (4) insist on a system based on standards, and (5) better evaluate vendor proposals. Chapters one through five focus on learning about networks. Chapter six outlines nontechnical considerations for making a network function well and serve its intended purpose. Appendices include a school networking needs analysis planning worksheet; sample wiring specifications; information on the OSI Seven-Layer Model; wiring guidelines for schools; snapshots of school networks; and networking resources for Northwest schools. Contains a bibliography and a glossary. 121p

Networking K-12 Schools: Architecture Models and Evaluation of Costs and Benefits. Adobe PDF
Rothstein, Russell Isaac
(Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA , Jun 1996)
This thesis examines the cost and benefits of communication networks in K-12 schools using cost analysis of five technology models with increasing levels of connectivity. Data indicate that the cost of the network hardware is only a small fraction of the overall networking costs. PC purchases, initial training, and retrofitting are the largest one-time costs for starting the network, and network support is the largest ongoing annual cost that schools must face. Over the first 5 years, support and training together comprise 46 percent of the total costs of networking schools. Costs are significantly reduced when aggregated at the district and state levels due to increased purchasing power. Using the Internet's CNN Newsroom to evaluate the benefits of K-12 networking reveal that students using CNN Newsroom placed more emphasis on the use of computers for school projects than did other students with similarly high access to technology. Lack of training and support was the biggest barrier for teachers and students, highlighting the need for school funding of the human infrastructure in addition to the network infrastructure. (Contains 48 references). 121p.

A Guide to Networking a K-12 School District.
Lamont, Bradley H.
(Thesis, Graduate College of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 1996)
Provides a step-by-step approach for teachers, technical coordinators, and administrators on how to network a school or school district. Includes information on many related topics, including necessary background work such as developing a technology plan. Explains how to develop network plans for a school district, and lists many of the common pieces of networking equipment used. Discusses future planning, and offers a comprehensive set of appendices, including samples of local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), technology plans, and acceptable-use policies.

Local Area Networks for K-12 Schools. ERIC Digest. Adobe PDF
Lederman, Tim
(ERIC Clearinghouse on Information and Technology, Syracuse, NY , 1995)
A Local Area Network (LAN) allows computing equipment to share information from any device on a network with other devices on the same network. Uses for LANs in schools include sharing printers and programs, centralized file sharing, access to library databases and catalog, cost-effective connection to external networks, electronic mail, school bulletin boards, and sending and receiving faxes. A LAN provides a school information system for administrators, teachers, students, parents and the community. School district uses for LANs include all of those uses in schools, particularly file sharing for student information, transmission of records, electronic mail and shared use of one district connection to the Internet. Common types of LANs are Ethernet and Token Ring; Ethernet predominates because it is easily designed and is composed of data transfer devices which are less expensive than similar Token Ring devices. There are many aspects of LAN design to consider when developing a technology plan for a school building or school district. These considerations include cabling medium, wiring plan, network and electrical outlets, furniture and fixture location, and potential use of space. An additional factor in design planning is the number of network connections per room; the needs of regular, special, technology, and computing classrooms should be considered, as well as the library, administrative offices and other offices. 4p.

References to Journal Articles

Making Wi-Fi Work
Beitenhaus, Christine
School Planning and Management; , p28-30 ; Feb 2012
Whether computers are in a lab, in the classroom or in students' hands, districts are turning to wireless networks to help integrate technology into education. With this decision comes the need not only for the right equipment and space, but also concerns about bandwidth and security issues, as well as making sure a diverse team helps make decisions in new and retrofit situations.

Center Stage. The Latest in Scoreboards and Sports Lighting.
Vence, Deborah L.
Recreation Management; Oct 2011
Discusses wireless and LED technology taking the scoreboard industry by storm, and the latest trends in sports lighting. Includes key steps to selecting a scoreboard.

Wire or Wireless, Staying connected.
Rivero, Victor
College Planning and Management; v14 n7 , p54,56,58,59 ; Jul 2011

Creating a Smart Classroom from Scratch.
McCrea, Bridget
Campus Technology; May 2011
Describes new classrooms set up at South College in Knoxville, Tennessee, with new technology equipment, tools and software, including secure wireless Internet access, lecture capture software, videoconferencing tools, and sensor pads.

Clicks and Bricks: How School Buildings Influence Future Practice and Technology Adoption. Adobe PDF
McIntosh, Ewan
Educational Facility Planner; v45 n1/2 , p33-37 ; 2011
Describes six specialized school spaces that encourage digital learning and customized learning. These are secret, group, publishing, performing, participation and watching spaces.

Making Your School Future-Proof.
Dessoff, Alan
District Administration; v46 n9 , p64-67,69-71 ; Oct 2010
Discusses the installation of flexible and upgradable technology in schools. Wireless connectivity is essential, as are adequate recharging stations, ability to serve a computer for every student, energy-efficient facilities that can deliver power without extraordinary additional costs, interactive whiteboards, and cloud-computing solutions.

Energy-Harvesting Sensors Power Building Controls to New Levels of Sustainability.
Martin, Graham
American School and Hospital Facility; v33 n4 , p6,8,9 ; Jul-Aug 2010
Describes the function of self-powered wireless sensors in the control of building systems, noting their ability to be placed conveniently for building occupants and their benefits to lowering energy use.

Critical Communications.
School Planning and Management; v49 n6 , p32,34,36 ; Jun 2010
Discusses classroom-to-administration communication systems that will be effective in a variety of emergencies. Intercom systems are preferred over telephones, as they are louder and more quickly activated, including by students who might need to take over for an incapacitated teacher. Networking of intercom systems for district-wide communication is described, as is distribution to wireless devices.

Wireless CMMS: Next-Generation Tool.
Bagadia, Kris
Maintenance Solutions; v18 n3 , p9,10 ; Mar 2010
Discusses the advantages of wireless computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS), with particular attention to implementation in a facility where technicians might resist the technology. The total cost of ownership, use of the keyboard, and connectivity is also addressed.

Imagining All of Campus as a Learning Environment.
Lane, Cara
EduCause Quarterly; v33 n3 ; 2010
Key findings of this research project are that although most students own laptops and mobile devices, use of student computing centers at the University of Washington continues to be high; embracing wireless and mobile learning requires imagining all of campus as a learning environment; for the most complete service, consider pursuing a hybrid approach — offering computing centers and support for wireless and mobile learning across campus.

Door Hardware Goes Hi-Tech.
Westerkamp, Thomas
Maintenance Solutions; v17 n12 , p8,9 ; Dec 2009
Reviews the current generation of door hardware technology, with a variety of computerized features that are now largely available in a wireless mode. Advice on training front-line technicians is included.

Now More Than Ever!
Bagadia, Kris
American School and Hospital Facility; v32 n6 , p18,20,21 ; Nov-Dec 2009
Reviews historical problems with paper-based building maintenance management, and then describes the benefits of computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS). The abilities of handheld devices, the software applications that use the information they gather, wireless communication, and advice on selecting a system are addressed.

Designing Collaborative Learning Spaces Where Material Culture Meets Mobile Writing Processes. Adobe PDF
Bemer, Amanda; Moeller, Ryan; Ball, Cheryl
Programmatic Perspectives; v1 , p139-166 ; Sep 2009
Discusses how a combination of movable furniture and mobile technology, including wireless access and laptops, can enhance student collaboration in group-based writing assignments. The lab included both desktop and laptop seating areas, so the authors created a modified worksite analysis designed to evaluate team collaboration in this new layout. These material changes in the lab allow students to configure the space according to their needs, offering them some measure of control over three crucial elements of successful collaboration: formality, presence, and confidentiality. Includes 31 references.

Cut the Wires, Cut the Cost. [Wireless BAS Systems Grow Up.]
Thompson, Josh
Building Operating Management; v56 n8 , p31,32,34 ; Aug 2009
Discusses the advantages of wireless building automation systems, which avoid the disruption and expense of cabling, conduit, or other infrastructures. Both proprietary and more open standards- based systems are discussed, as is battery life, the reluctance of IT staff to open their networks to additional wireless access, and system security.

Improving Wireless Coverage.
Wiens, Janet
College Planning and Management; v12 n8 , p34,35 ; Aug 2009
Discusses means of improving wireless penetration at higher education institutions. Digital antenna systems (DAS) are described, including their hub, remote antenna units, and cabling. These systems can target select areas where coverage needs to be boosted. Advice on selecting a multi-carrier solution is included.

CMMS: Going Mobile.
Bagadia, Kris; Kossik, Ronald
Maintenance Solutions; v17 n7 , p16,17 ; Jul 2009
Reviews the use of wireless devices in facilities management that can hold more data, create electronic forms, produce reports, access the Internet, and synchronize with other hardware. Advice on selection of wireless devices covers screen size, memory, durability, keyboard, wi-fi ability, real time versus synchronized transmission, capacity, CAD and code table support, operating systems, and costs.

Future Projection.
Villano, Matt
Campus Technology; v22 n1 , p18-20,22 ; Jul 2009
Discusses five current trends in digital projectors: 1) wireless, 2) better light and color, 3) remote monitoring and maintenance, 4) better lens shift, 5) and improved mountability.

It's All about Flex-Ability.
Grush, Mary
Campus Technology; v22 n10 , p31,32,34,36 ; Jun 2009
Profiles Santa Clara University's Harrington Learning Commons, Sobrato Technology Center, and Orradre Library. This single building provides complete wireless coverage, traditional and flexible furnishings, abundant power access, and a variety of private and collaborative learning spaces.

Case Study: Diablo Valley College Goes Wireless to Integrate with Network Security.
Vigue, Beverly
Doors and Hardware; v73 n2 , p20-22 ; Feb 2009
Profiles this institution's use of wireless locks to retrofit an older building for increased access control. Proximity card access and a key override are featured.

Off the Shelf: High-Tech Library ushers in the Digital Age at University of Nevada. Adobe PDF
Alfonso, Alex
School Construction News; v12 n1 , p16-18 ; Jan-Feb 2009
Profiles the new library at the University of Nevada, featuring an advanced automated book retrieval and reshelving system that adapts to the frequency of use, study rooms with plasma screens, wireless network, a cafe, and daylighting.

"N" is for Now!
Briggs, Linda
Campus Technology; v22 n3 , p30-32,34,36 ; Nov 2008
Discusses the advent of the 802.11n standard for wireless networks. The new standard promises dramatic increases in speed and signal coverage, and eliminates the need for wired connections in some high-bandwidth applications such as video, multimedia, sound, and even voice of internet protocol (VoIP). Examples of how the standard is being implemented at ten higher education institutions are included.

Buying Time.
Brown, Nicholas
Athletic Business; v32 n11 , p34-36,38,40,42 ; Nov 2008
Discusses features of sports arenas that can help spectators feel more connected to the event. These included center-hung scoreboards; full-range sound delivered to all seating areas, the concourses, and the restrooms; upgraded lighting; closed-circuit television; and wireless connectivity throughout the facility.

Interesting Developments.
McDonough, Andy
Campus Technology; v22 n3 , p16,18,20 ; Nov 2008
Discusses trends in digital projector technology, citing the features and installation criteria of DLP, LCD, and hybrid LCoS devices. Wireless and ultra-short-throw projectors are also discussed.

Alvord Schools Network Access Control to Improve Security.
Vigue, Beverly
Doors and Hardware; v72 n10 , p10-12,14,16 ; Oct 2008
Describes how this California school system used bond funding to place their 20 schools on a single access control network, replacing most keys with access cards and traditional locks with wireless card readers.

Preparing for the Worst, Just in Case.
Willis, Ashley
Campus Safety; v16 n5 , p62-65 ; Sep-Oct 2008
Reviews how Coastal Carolina University installed 80 wireless call boxes, accompanies by nearly 200 IP video surveillance cameras with superior coverage and image quality.

Know the Score: Scoreboard Options Run the Gamut.
Klingensmith, Dawn
Recreation Management; v9 n7 , p30-35 ; Jul 2008
Explores a wide range of scoreboard options, from the most economical flip-style models that can cost as little as $30, to the most elaborate LED screens, whose significant costs may sometimes be offset by the selling of advertising. Wireless scoreboard technology and decorative architectural elements are also discussed.

Getting Mobile.
Norris, Cathleen; Soloway, Elliot
District Administration; v44 n8 , p20-24 ; Jul 2008
Discusses the advent of handheld computers in K-12 classrooms. The properties that distinguish a mobile device from a laptop are discussed, as are some of the ways teachers have incorporated them into the classroom. Examples of successful handheld computer programs from three school systems are provided.

Sounding the Alarm.
Kneen, Jayson; Welch, Beth
The Construction Specifier; v 61 n6 , p68-74 ; Jun 2008
Discusses the evolution of simple fire alarm systems to emergency mass notification systems that increasingly use wireless technology and are more impervious to destruction by the event. Components of mass notification systems are discussed, as are applicable codes, and effective communication to occupants with disabilities.

Technology Push.
Kennedy, Mike
American School and University; v80 n7 , p16-20,22 ; Mar 2008
Reviews the evolution of technology in schools from early Internet access to current pursuit of wireless technology for classroom and administrative functions. Particular attention is given to internet-based systems for school safety and security.

A Sense of Security.
Herrmann, Michele
University Business; v11 n2 , p43-47 ; Feb 2008
Reviews features of sophisticated campus access systems, including wireless systems that avoid expensive drilling at installation, supplementation of card access with video and biometric systems, and proximity systems that do not require a card swipe.

Are We Covered?
Millard, Elizabeth
University Business; v11 n2 , p55-58 ; Feb 2008
Discusses the increasing demand for wireless coverage on higher education campuses, with students and faculty now expecting coverage to the entire campus, and institutions scrambling to extend coverage from the most popular gathering spaces to the very smallest classrooms and residence hall rooms. Technical issues, funding, and the evolution to technology that provides coverage over longer distance are addressed.

Digital Living on Campus.
Whaling, Mike
College Planning and Management; v11 n2 , p60,62,64,66,68 ; Feb 2008
Advises planners of college housing on the technological expectations of occupants, planning for evolving technology, the hardware that students typically own, and off-campus housing amenities that lure potential dormitory occupants away.

Everyone’s Going Wireless, So Why Aren’t We?
Gravina, Robert J.
The School Administrator; May 2007
Discusses what has prevented school districts from embracing wireless technology, security measures, and existing hardware.

Toward a Future Wireless Classroom Paradigm.
Choi, Young B. ; . Abbott, Thomas A.; Arthur, Michelle A.; Hill Douglas N.
International Journal of Innovation and Learning ; v4 n1 ; 2007
The use of wireless computers in the classroom has become an increasing trend in the 21st century. This paper explains the roles and effectiveness of computers and the internet in an educational environment, as well as the importance of current technologies used in schools, including Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) and tablet PCs. The use of handheld devices will be a valuable asset to students and teachers alike in future classrooms. [Authors' abstract]

Wireless on Campus
Black, David R.
Campus Technology; Aug 2006
Wireless computing, whether incorporated into new construction or added to existing structures, can revitalize classroom instruction. In the classroom, wireless is now an essential part of providing a well-rounded education. This takes a look at how wireless computing can provide convenience, connectivity, and an air of being on the cutting edge of technology.

Wireless Laptops as Means for Promoting Active Learning in Large Lecture Halls. Adobe PDF
Barak, Miri; Lipson, Alberta; Lerman, Steven
Journal of Research on Technology in Education; v38 n3 , p245-263 ; Spring 2006
This paper reports on a study that examined the use of wireless laptops for promoting active learning in lecture halls. The study examined students' behavior in class and their perceptions of the new learning environment throughout three consecutive semesters. An online survey revealed that students have highly positive perceptions about the use of wireless laptops, but less positive perceptions about being active in class. Class observations showed that the use of wireless laptops enhances student-centered, hands-on, and exploratory learning, as well as meaningful student-to-student and student-to-instructor interactions. However, findings also show that wireless laptops can become a source of distraction, if used for non-learning purposes.

Tech U: Compressed Air. Adobe PDF
Buhl, Frank
Network Computing; , p43-45 ; Mar 16, 2006
Universities, with their compact living quarters and student-filled lecture halls, are currently facing the challenges of dense wireless deployments--channel selection, co-channel interference, power asymmetry and wireless client scalability--that enterprises can expect as their wireless networks mature.

Wireless Communication.
Pascopella, Angela
District Administration; v42 n2 ; Feb 2006
Describes the use of wireless technology in schools, with devices being used to photographically document drug dealing and gang activity, as well as to track students and identify locations of persistent security risk.

Campuses Expanding Wireless Coverage
Briggs, Linda L.
Campus Technology; 2006
As wireless networks rapidly gain traction on college campuses, more and more administrators are looking to expand their access points, upgrade to faster standards, and entice more students to use the wireless network.

What's after Wireless?
Swaim, Chuck
Educational Facility Planner; v 40 n 3/4 , p41-44 ; 2006
Describes five components of effective planning for future classroom technology, and then details six implications for future classroom technology components. These include converging networks, wired and wireless, cellular computers, and very thin appliances. Includes four references.

World Without Wires: Is Your District Ready to Go Wireless?
Villano, Matt
Technology & Learning; v26 n2 , p10 ; Sep 2005
The author presents the latest wireless equipments available in market. For starters, wireless networks offer mobility and flexibility: users of laptops, PDAs, tablet PCs, and wireless Voice over IP telephones can move freely about campus while staying connected to the Internet. There are two kinds of wireless networks: ad-hoc, or peer-to-peer networks, and wireless local area networks (WLAN). With ad-hoc networks, each computer on the network has its own wireless networking interface card and can communicate directly with other wireless-enabled computers. The WLAN approach sets up a network connection that revolves around an access point. Most access points can support as many as 30 computers concurrently, and each device services a finite range. Since the newest Microsoft and Apple operating systems automatically search for active access points, one shouldn't have to do much more than plug in an access point for it to work (older operating systems can be retrofitted to work with wireless, too, but newer operating systems work best). Wireless networking poses potential security issues because intruders don't need physical access to the traditional wired network to gain access to data.

The World of Wireless.
Millard, Elizabeth
District Administration; v41 n6 ; Jun 2005
Discusses implementation of wireless networks in schools, citing the advent of tablet PC's that recognize handwriting and several advantages of home-to-school computer access.

New in Wireless
Chretien, Wendy
Campus Technology; Feb 2005
A summary of some of the emerging changes and issues in higher education wireless networking technologies.

Unplugged Facilities.
Ahmed, S. Faruq
American School and University; v77 n3 , p369-371 ; Nov 2004
Describes three types of wireless networks: laser, infrared, and radio frequency. IEEE wireless standards and coverages are explained, and advice for retaining wired portions of the network, combining it with wireless, enhancing security, and getting a properly configured system is offered.

Can You Hear Me Now?
Ham, Eric; Warner, Jason
School Construction News; v7 n7 , p35 ; Oct 2004
Discusses the advantage of upgrading campus telecommunications to wireless. The installation is less invasive than traditional cabling, and the host campus can generally revenue from the use of the resulting network for cellular communication.

Wireless World.
Kinzler, David; Burkhardt, Jerry
American School and University; v76 n13 , p144-146 ; Aug 2004
Describes the high value of campus-wide wireless communication and the features of a successful program. These are seamless coverage, adaptability for future technologies, aesthetically acceptable installation of antennae, and appropriate capacity for peak periods.

Wireless Takes Off
Villano, Matt
University Business; May 2004
As a variety of new wireless communication applications become available across North America, technology officials at academic institutions are exploring all sorts of innovative ways to incorporate them into the telecommunications landscape. At some schools, such as Marquette, this has meant a newfound reliance on a familiar device--the cellular phone. At other schools, the trend has sparked an effort to incorporate voice and data into wireless personal digital assistants (PDAs) and other, surprising devices and objects. At still other institutions of higher education, the push has led to trials of some of the most cutting-edge wireless technologies anywhere on Earth--802.16 broadband wireless, wireless Voice over the Internet Protocol (VoIP), and new wireless communication technologies driven by radio transmitters smaller than the period at the end of this sentence.

Examining the Wireless Classroom.
T.H.E. Journal ; Mar 2004
This entire issue of T.H.E. Journal explores aspects of wireless use in education. The feature article, "Finding Waves: Techniques for a Successful Wireless Site Survey," provides a primer for the three most common methods of designing a campus-wide WLAN. There is an update on wireless technology, as well as information on using wireless telephones to assist in school safety and communications. In addition, three applications stories chronicle different experiences with wireless technology at St. John's University, The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools in North Carolina, and the University of Memphis.

The Ever Changing Campus: Pedagogy, Technology, and Facilities. Adobe PDF
Lidsky, Arthur J.
Facilities Manager; v20 n2 , p22-25 ; Mar-Apr 2004
Explores the relationship between pedagogy, technology, and facilities, emphasizing advances in wireless and Internet communication. Effects on the design of classrooms, laboratories, administrative spaces, and libraries are described.

Overcoming Wireless LAN Management Challenges
Borthwick, Justin
Syllabus; Feb 2004
Case study of how the University of Wyoming rolled out wireless local area network (WLAN).

Teacher Connections.
Fickes, Michael
School Planning and Management; v42 n10 , p26-27 ; Dec 2003
Describes ways that wireless, cordless, and two-way radio systems can be used by teachers for security and communication with administration staff. The installation and operating requirements of various systems are outlined.

Wi-Fi Poses School Health Risk, Suit Against Illinois District Argues.
Borja, Rhea R.
Education Week; v23 n8 , p9 ; Oct 22, 2003
A group of parents and their children has sued a suburban Chicago school district over the use of "Wi-Fi," or wireless fidelity, alleging that the technology's radio waves may pose serious health risks to children. District officials vigorously defend the use of Wi-Fi, and the technology industry maintains that Wi-Fi is safe. [Free subscriber registration is required.]

Implementing Wireless Technology in the Classroom: The iPAQ Project.
Juniu, Susana
College Planning and Management; v6 n10 , p38-39 ; Oct 2003
Describes a pilot project at Montclair State University that used handheld computers for the wireless delivery of academic course content and assignments.

Wireless Classrooms: Evolution or Extinction?
Strauss, Howard
Syllabus; Oct 01, 2003
"With wireless we do not need classrooms at all. Students do not need to come together in the same spot at the same time to learn. Classrooms are an unfortunate compromise on the best way to deliver education. They exist because we lacked the technology to have each student learn in the ever-changing way and place that suited each student best. The promise of wireless is a paradigm shift that would begin the extinction of classrooms, courses, and free learners to learn everywhere - no longer tethered to a classroom."

Going Wireless.
Swanquist, Barry; Barza, Joel
American School and University; v76 n2 , p40,42,43,44 ; Oct 2003
Describes furnishing issues which arise when schools use wireless networks. Emphasizes coordinated planning of furnishings, power supplies, flexibility and security.

No Strings Attached.
Joyner, Amy
American School Board Journal; v190 n9 , p50-52 ; Sep 2003
Wireless networks allow students to access technology when and where they need it. Describes a wireless network at a Florida magnet high school, methods of training teachers to use the new technology in their classrooms, and problem solving. A sidebar lists wireless resources.

Wireless Schools.
Madsen, Jana J.
Buildings Magazine; v97 n8 , p54-55 ; Aug 2003
Discusses the advantages of using wireless networks in today's schools, which helps bring more computers into the classroom and gives instructors the flexibility to take learning across campus, community, and the World Wide Web. Using Radio Frequency, today's wireless local area networks (LANs) are as reliable as traditional wired LANs and can be implemented in a number of applications, varying in scope and scale.

Wireless Protection.
Conforti, Fred
American School and University; v75 n9 , p36b-36f ; May 2003
Discusses wireless access-control equipment in the school and university setting, particularly the integrated reader lock at the door with a panel interface module at the control panel. Describes its benefits, how it works, and its reliability and security.

Are School Networks as Safe as We Think?
Enderle, Jerry
School Planning and Management; v42 n4 , p38-41 ; Apr 2003
Discusses issues of security for school computer networks, including protection against viruses and hackers.

Rethinking Wireless
Villano, Matt
University Business; Apr 2003
As wireless LANs grow on campuses across North America, academic technologists strategize for the challenges of the future. This discusses why to go wireless, designing a network, managing a network, securing a network, and planning for the future.

P.S. 69, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Architectural Record; v191 n3 ; Mar 2003
Describes the title school building by Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates, including the educational context and design goals. Includes information on the architects, manufacturers/suppliers, and construction team; a general building description; and a commentary on the design. Also includes the floor plan and photographs. It is the first New York City public school built with a wireless computer network. A translucent canopy, cantilevered from the curved façade, guides children through the entrance and into the atrium’s open, light-filled space. Upper-level glass-block floors allow natural light to reach the spaces below. [Free subscriber registration is required.]

A Sensible Approach to Wireless Networking.
Ahmed, S. Faruq
School Planning and Management; v41 n11 , p23-25 ; Nov 2002
Discusses radio frequency (R.F.) wireless technology, including industry standards, range (coverage) and throughput (data rate), wireless compared to wired networks, and considerations before embarking on a large-scale wireless project.

Laptop Lessons.
Cook, Glenn
American School Board Journal; v189 n7 , p12-16 ; Jul 2002
Case studies of school districts investing in large-scale purchases of laptops for their students, including Henrico County Public Schools in Virginia, Oklahoma City Public Schools, Quaker Valley School District in Pittsburgh, and the state of Maine. This discusses training issues, security concerns, and costs.

Wireless LANs: New Solutions for Today's Schools.
Greaves, Thomas W.
School Planning and Management; v41 n2 , p18 ; Feb 2002
This article gives several compelling reasons for using wireless commuications in the classroom, describes the three major components of a wireless system, and explains the importance of properly planning for wireless LAN implementation.

Secrets of Wireless Technology Planning: Simple Things Done Well.
Bowers, Paul
College Planning and Management; v4 n7 , p38,40-41 ; Jul 2001
Presents the key principles and practices that guided Buena Vista University (Iowa) safely through its wireless technology planning process. Principles and practices covered include linking information technology to institutional missions with clearly articulated goals; recognizing the human above and before technology; and seeking workable strategies, not final solutions.

TI's 802.11g Specifications Taken Out of Running
Liu, Bob
Internet News; May 16, 2001
Reports actions taken by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers on a specific component of the organization's evolving 802.11 family of standards. These standards shape the way that data is transmitted over wireless networks, and they foster the development of products that will help wireless networks distribute data between users quickly, securely, and affordably.

Home and School Technology: Wired versus Wireless.
Van Horn, Royal
Phi Delta Kappan; v82 n8 , p571,641-42 ; Apr 2001
Presents results of informal research on smart homes and appliances, structured home wiring, whole-house audio/video distribution, hybrid cable, and wireless networks. Computer network wiring is tricky to install unless all-in-one jacketed cable is used. Wireless phones help installers avoid pre-wiring problems in homes and schools.

What We've Learned about TCO.
Fitzgerald, Sara
School Planning and Management; v40 n1 , p84-87 ; Jan 2001
Presents the latest thinking on Total Cost of Ownership in educational technology and the management of its long-term costs. Areas examined include the costs of retrofitting to accommodate new technology and upgrading into wireless technology, and how infrastructure affects tech support.

The Unwired Classroom:Wireless Computers Come of Age
McKenzie, Jamie
From Now On: The Educational Technology Journal; v10 n4 ; Jan 2001
Based upon personal visits to schools over four months, the author and editor of "From Now On" discusses the role of wireless laptops in K-12 schools. The author outlines their ease of use, flexibility, and potential for integration with curriculum and various teaching styles. The article concludes with a discussion of technical issues and a list of online resources.

What Broadband Means for Schools.
Moore, Bob
School Planning and Management; v40 n1 , p79-82 ; Jan 2001
Explains what a computer network broadband connection is and how having one benefits educational facilities that have implemented telecommunications. The importance of using an application service provider is discussed along with suggestions to help schools get started in adopting broadband communications.

Technology Calling.
Day, C. William
(Primedia Intertec, Overland Park, KS, Sep 2000)
American School and University; v73 n1 , p40-41 ; Sep 2000
For local-area networks (LAN), wide-area networks (WAN) and PCs to function most effectively, schools need a single districtwide communications system that is compatible with their existing infrastructure, but at the same time is capable of evolving to embrace new technologies. To do this, schools must fundamentally re-engineer the independent nature of their existing networks—voice, data, video and Internet. Administrators should be looking at combining and consolidating them into one comprehensive connection.

Wired Versus Wireless. Adobe PDF
Meeks, Glenn; Nair, Prakash
PEB Exchange; n40 , p22-24 ; Jun 2000
Debates the issue of investing in wiring schools for desktop computer networks versus using laptops and wireless networks. Included are cost considerations and the value of technology for learning. Suggestions include using wireless networks for existing schools, hardwiring computers for new construction, and not using computers for elementary education.

Getting Wired for Wireless: The Student Laptop Revolution.
Butterfield, Eric
School Construction News; v3 n3 , p18-19 ; May-Jun 2000
Presents a director of information technology's insight concerning the reasons his school district went wireless, including funding and cost issues. Also discussed is the decision making on going from 3-megabit cards to 11-megabit cards, renovating versus new construction, providing laptops to the students, and the benefits of laptops in large campuses.

Wireless Andrew.
Fickes, Michael
College Planning and Management; v3 n5 , p45-47 ; May 2000
Describes the use of the Internet and laptops help Carnegie Mellon University students carry out sophisticated research anywhere on campus. How the university became a wireless community is discussed.

A School Connectivity Primer
O'Donovan, Eamonn
Technology & Learning; v20 n9 , p20-26, 28 ; Apr 2000
Overview of Internet connectivity describing various networking options. Technologies discussed include the Ethernet, the most widely used technology to connect computers in school buildings; wireless technology, which has become popular ways for schools to establish or expand their local area networks; T1 and T3 lines, which are fast phone lines for connecting to the Internet; Internet access via satellite connections; Internet via cable modems; digital subscriber lines; and broadband technology.

Wired vs. Wireless
Fielding, Randall
School Construction News; v3 n2 , p25-26 ; Mar-Apr 2000
Presents a debate on which technology will be in tomorrow's classrooms and the pros and cons of wiring classrooms and using a wireless network. Concluding comments address the likelihood, and desirability, of placing computers throughout the entire educational process and what types of computers and capabilities are needed.

Join the Wireless Revolution.
Coburn, Janet
School Planning and Management; Oct 1999
Information to help make the decision on whether or not wireless computer networks are the right solution when retrofitting older buildings. Defines wireless, provides reasons for choosing wireless networks, describes different methods of data transmission including infrared and satellite, and describes two case studies.

Managing PennNet.
Fickes, Michael
College Planning and Management; v2 n10 , p28, 30 ; Oct 1999
Discusses the management of one of the most advanced campus networks in the United States at the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia). The bandwidth requirements it uses, how advanced applications are addressed, and some insights on its infrastructure are examined.

Smart Networking Decisions: A Kase Study.
Sturgeon, Julie
School Planning and Management; v38 n8 ; Aug 1999
Describes one decision-making approach for quickly implementing a communications network into a school district. The use of volunteer labor for wiring installation, computer selection focusing on standardization to aid in troubleshooting, and an intranet system to achieve efficiency and learning opportunities for teachers and administrative personnel alike are discussed.

Three for the Price of One.
School Planning and Management; v38 n7 ; Jul 1999
Describes how one school district installed a high-speed data network infrastructure that included a free telephone system and video. The asynchronous transfer mode system chosen by the school district is described, along with its telephone and video components.

National Science Foundation Wireless Field Test for Education Project
(Old Colorado City Communications, National Science Foundation, Colorado Springs, CO, 1999)
This project systematically field tests the technical characteristics of a selected variety of wireless devices and digital radio nets which can be integrated into types of telecommunications networks, including the Internet, which link computers, sensing devices, control systems, servers, LANS and WANS operated by individuals, classrooms, schools and colleges. Includes project plans, progress reports, regulatory issues, demos.

The Evolution of the Wide Area Network.
Buchanan, Larry
Multimedia Schools; v6 n1 ; Jan-Feb 1999
Examines the fast pace at which wide area network (WAN) technology is being utilized by schools in the Poudre School District in Fort Collins, Colorado, which presently operates local area networks (LANs) in each of its schools. Explores strategies for better utilizing and distributing network resources, including software and hardware products, teacher training, and the planning, selection, and implementation of a wireless WAN.

Protecting Against Failure.
Hammond, Edward; Hall, John
American School and University; v70 n12 , p126-128 ; Aug 1998
Examines the need for power reliability when educational facilities incorporate communications infrastructures. Telecommunications equipment placement and environmental conditions are addressed as are the integrating of cable trays and conduit systems, developing surge-suppression, and building grounding systems.

From LAN to WAN: A District-Wide Vision.
Detmer, Barbara
MultiMedia Schools; v4 n5 , p14-16 ; Nov-Dec 1997
Describes a high school media center's plans for changing their computer configuration from a local area network to a district-supported wide area network to share resources. Topics include interlibrary loan; networking CD-ROMs; cooperative planning; computer printers; access from remote locations; and Internet access.

Wide Area Wireless Computing
Rysavy, Peter
Network Computing; Sep 1997
Explores the benefits of wireless local area networks (LANs) and wide area networks (WANs). Examines various types of WANs, including cellular systems, paging networks, and dedicated wireless WANs. Discusses a planning process that helps users evaluate general requirements such as coverage and operating costs. Highlights the key issues in working with wireless data, and examines protocols and interfaces, hardware and wireless middleware, as well as testing and integration issues.

Creating Common Knowledge: School Networking in an Urban Setting.
Carlitz, Robert D.; Zinga, Mario
Internet Research; v7n4 , p274-86 ; 1997
Discussion of the use of wide area computer networks to facilitate community-building and educational reform in elementary-secondary education focuses on a project in Pittsburgh called Common Knowledge: Pittsburgh that is seeking to develop new environments for teaching and learning. Guidelines for other school districts are presented.

Technology Infrastructure: A Primer for Principals.
Gigli, Ann
Principal; v76 n3 , p10-11 ; Jan 1997
Explains for principals' benefit the basics of technology infrastructure, necessary components, local area networks, wide area networks, and tips for networking a school's computers. Successful models often incorporate a mix of central-office and school-based technicians, secondary students in vocational programs, and community volunteers.

The Lingo of the LAN (or WAN)
Buchanan, Larry
MultiMedia Schools; v3 n5 , p48-50 ; Nov-Dec 1996
More educators could effectively communicate with network designers and installers if they understood the technical vocabulary related to computer networks. Terms associated with local area and wide area networks--building materials, connection strategies, network traffic control, and protocols--are defined. Advice is given for planning school system networks.

Building a School District's Wide Area Network
Mastel, Vern L.
T.H.E. Journal; v23 n9 , p69-75 ; Apr 1996
Describes the development of a wide area network (WAN) in the Bismarck Public School District (North Dakota). Topics include design goals, network infrastructure, implementing library access, sharing resources across platforms, electronic mail, dial-in access, Internet access, adhering to software licenses, shareware and freeware, and monitoring the WAN.

Guidelines for Creating a Network--a Case Study.
Herndon, John; Yarrow, John
Learning and Leading with Technology; v23 n5 , p31-33 ; Feb 1996
Describes the creation of a wide-area network for school districts based on one developed at the Carrollton-Farmers Branch Independent School District (Texas). Topics include conducting a needs assessment, selecting hardware and software, issuing a Request for Proposals, management capabilities, network installation, the bidding process, the contract, and evaluation.



Due to lack of funding, the National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities is currently available only as an archived site. As of September 1, 2012 no new content will be added or updates made. We regret the need to take such steps, but should funding become available, we look forward to reinvigorating NCEF and providing this valuable resource to the educational facilities community.

If you have questions or are an organization or company wishing to support the continued operation of this industry recognized resource please contact Institute President Henry Green (, 202-289-7800).