Real-time Interactive Classroom

Real-time screenshotPenn State’s Real-time Interactive Classroom (RIC) is based on advanced video conferencing technology.

Anywhere a high bandwidth connection can be made through a browser, the student experiences a dynamic learning environment where the instructor and students have real-time multimedia sharing of PowerPoint presentations, documents, streaming videos, demonstration software, white boards, Flash animations, and shared annotation privileges.


The RIC provides a compelling learning environment with high-definition video and integrated audio. Up to six live simultaneous video feeds in the main session create a true online classroom experience. The video experience includes active speaker, which switches the video automatically to focus on the current speaker.

Your benefit from the technology



woman on couch with laptopStudents in accelerated seven-week courses meet online with their instructor and their classmates for two hours per week, while additional coursework and homework assignments are completed online throughout the week using Penn State’s course management system.


Cost Savings


Students enrolled in real-time interactive courses avoid costly commutes to campus. Students attend online sessions at home, the office, while traveling, or anywhere there is a high bandwidth connection. There’s no complicated software to install or costly hardware to purchase. VoIP (Voice over IP) is used, so the student does not incur costly telephone toll charges.




Real-time interactive courses are Penn State credit courses taught by Penn State faculty. Students benefit by having live access to faculty and their classmates.  Labs, help sessions, and instructor office hours are available online to support the student’s progress in the courses.