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Take and Try Resources for Check-out

If you’ve thought about experimenting with a new educational technology or trying a different teaching technique, the Center for Teaching can help. We offer educational technology equipment and teaching resources to Vanderbilt faculty members and other instructors for academic use, free of charge.


Below is a list of equipment we offer for check-out.
Click on each item to learn more about the equipment and for ideas on how you might incorporate it into your teaching.


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Zoom H2n Digital Audio Recorder

This recording device has five built-in microphones and four different recording modes: X/Y, Mid-Side, 2-channel surround and 4-channel surround. Other advanced features include automatic gain control and onboard and effects like compression, limiting and low cut filtering. Perfect for recording a two or three person podcast interview.

View Larger Blue Snowball

With this simple USB microphone, you can capture studio-quality audio for voice, music, and multimedia productions. It features a simple plug-and-play operation, which means you don’t need any extra equipment—just plug right into your computer and start recording audio.


Audio can be used in numerous academic contexts, from music and language instruction to archival recordings of lectures. Making audio content available online can be an excellent way to reach students, who can listen from any location and at any time via the Internet. Students increasingly expect this content to be available to them, and, fortunately, the means of distribution are increasingly becoming easier to use.

Use it to provide audio supplements to your online environment.

  • provide students with a study aid they can review after lecture
  • enable students to review the lecture in preparation for discussion and debate
  • demonstrate a task, procedure, or complex concept that would benefit from multimedia presentation and/or the ability to watch repeatedly
  • use on an ongoing basis as a reference for students

Use it as a tool for students projects or assignments

Learn even more about creating audio.


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Zoom Q2n Digital Video Recorder

The Q2n features a 160-drgree wide-angle lens and 10 presets that allow you to record in a wide range of environments, including low-light locations. It fits in the palm of your hand so it’s small enough to carry anywhere. It records up to two hours of footage on two standard AA batteries and the intuitive controls and simple one-button recording make this camera easy to use. Footage is recorded directly to a removable miniSD card (included).

View Larger Canon VIXIA HF M31 Camcorder

This camcorder provides special effects options and allows for more complex camera operations, like the ability to zoom in and out or perform camera moves. You can record up to 12 hours of crisp high definition video to a 32GB internal flash drive. It's compact and easy to carry around. It has 3.28 Megapixel full HD resolution and is great to record field footage or a classroom lecture. Your recorded footage is transferred to your computer via a USB cable.

View Larger Canon XA25 Camcorder

For those wanting to produce a more complex video, you might choose this compact, high-performance professional camcorder. Equipped with a shotgun microphone and additional XLR microphone input, this camera provides an uncompressed signal at 1920x1080 resolution, suitable for editing a professional-looking video production. Footage from this camera is recorded directly to a removable standard-size SD card (included).


Videos are a great way to supplement your course content or provide resources for those who want to know more. Using Brightspace, you and your students can easily upload and share videos for class. Learn more about using media in Brightspace. You can also create your own channel of YouTube videos where you can list all of the videos you’d like them to watch, as well as create and upload your own original video content.

Use it to present content.

Use a ‘flipped classroom’ approach and have students watch a mini lecture before class so you can begin the class session with questions, discussions, or activities based on the video.

Use it to promote student interaction and debate.

Post videos that voice opposing viewpoints about your topic and have students comment on the video, as well as other students’ comments by using the blogging features within YouTube

Use it to promote student exploration and critical thinking.

Have students build your supplementary video database by assigning them the task of coming up with one or two great video examples and defending their choices.

Learn more about creating and using video.


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AAXA Technologies P300 Pico Projector

This tiny 5.9" x 3.9" x 1.6" size projector can project a 120" image (in low light conditions). Our kit includes a remote and mini desktop tripod. The projector can operate via the built-in rechargeable battery pack or power adapter. You can connect HDMI, VGA, Composite A/V along with Micro SD and USB readers. The unit also has a built-in speaker for audio.


These tiny, battery operated projectors allow you to present from any location inside or outside of your classroom.  Consider how you might use this to expand the walls of your classroom, or to create activities for students where they can project an image, presentation or multimedia project from any location in the room.

View Larger 9"x12" Dry Erase Lapboard Kit

This dry erase lapboard it includes markers and erasers for up to 48 people. (Note: the kit transports in two zipper packs.)


Dry erase boards can be used in individual, whole group, or small group instruction.

Use them to have students think-pair-share.

Start by writing a problem on the board and have students solve the problem on their own boards without help. Then have them share their answers with a neighbor to check accuracy and give it another try, if needed. In this simple exercise of posing a question or problem to the class, giving students time to consider their response (think), and then partner with another student to discuss their responses (pair) and then being asked to report (share) their conclusions and reasoning to the larger group can be used as a starting point to promote discussion in the class as a whole. The inclusion of “think” time and the initial opportunity to talk about a response with a single peer reduces the anxiety some students feel about responding to instructor prompts.

Use them to have students draw a concept map.

Concept maps are visual representations of the relationships between concepts. To have students create a concept map, identify the key concepts to be mapped in small groups or as a whole class. Ask students to determine the general relationship between the concepts and to arrange them two at a time, drawing arrows between related concepts and labeling with a short phrase to describe the relationship. By asking students to build an external representation of their mental model of a process, this approach helps students examine and strengthen the organization within the model.

Learn more about active learning strategies.

View Larger VisualsSpeak Visual Facilitation and Icebreaker Kit

VisualsSpeak is an Image set that contains 200 photographs that have been tested and used across a broad spectrum of processes. that have been analyzed for the underlying visual language and their ability to move conversations forward, get people engaged, and help spark new ideas and understandings.

The kit includes user manual that gives you an overview of suggested methods, as well as specific examples of how to use it in a variety of contexts.


The brain processes pictures faster and in larger chunks, so we can further open the possibility of making leaps in our thinking by using images. Using VisualsSpeaks can help you facilitate thinking on virtually any topic in a more visual way.

Use images to increase participation.

Using a visual-based tool can help facilitate engagement. When one person “gets it,” the others are soon to follow. Even people who had no inclination or desire to participate are much more inclined to do so when others get actively involved.

Use images to help connect the dots.

Images help participants get below the surface quickly, giving groups the ability to make associations and connections to information that is not always directly accessible. This linkage allows them to take leaps in their thinking by getting them out of literal, analytical mindsets.

Use images to level the playing field for non-native speakers.

If your class consists of non-native speakers of the dominant language, then using images gives them another way to express themselves. The photographs will allow these participants to literally show their thoughts and give them ways to communicate other than just in words. This has the added benefit of helping them feel included and empowered to share more.

Use images to inspire storytelling.

Stories are the basis of communication regardless of culture. Even financial reports are stories told in the language of mathematics. Images can help unlock the inner storyteller in your students.

Use images to increase learning through fun.

Searching through stacks of images is a process that invokes fun. They will compare and share stories about them, and engage in creative dialogues and find new ways to express themselves. Don’t ever doubt the power of increased learning through having fun.

Use images to help students break out of habitual patterns.

It is easy to fall into routines of thinking. Most of the time this is very helpful, but it can also tip into patterns that do not allow for new possibilities. Using images to spark associations can lead students to new ideas and insights that are beyond what we think about with words alone.

Learn more about how you might use the VisualSpeak image set.

View Larger Wacom USB Drawing Tablet

The Wacom Intuos Creative Pen and Touch Tablet connects directly to your computer via a USB cable. It has a pressure-sensitive pen and multi-touch capabilities that let you sketch, doodle or draw with a familiar pen-on-paper feel. It has a multi-touch surface allowing you to control, zoom, scroll and position your work using intuitive gestures by both left and right-hand users.


Do you spend too much class time facing the blackboard, rather than your students? Using a tablet can help you work through a problem, draw a diagram or chart, or make notations in clear view of all the students while facing the class.

Use it where you might typically use pen and paper.

Draw charts, graphs, or illustrations. Work through math equations. Mark-up text documents or images. Couple it with software packages like PowerPoint or your web browser and circle, highlight, or annotate whatever is on your computer desktop. You can also save these drawing, figures, and annotations and share them electronically with students or post them along with other course content on Brightspace.


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Breakout EDU Escape Room Kit

Breakout EDU is an immersive learning games platform. Use this kit to turn your classroom into an academically focused escape room and facilitate games where players use teamwork and critical thinking to solve a series of challenging puzzles in order to open the locked box.

This kit is designed for between 8-15 players. The kit comes with an access code to the Breakout EDU platform with 500+ games you can use - or design your own.


Escape rooms activities capitalize on a popular entertainment trend. You can use an escape challenge to  facilitate cooperative learning as they work together to solve a series of puzzles in order to “break out” of a room.

Use it to build team work skills.

Because of the game’s time parameter, students must quickly decide how best to work together to solve the problems posed by the game.

Use it to build critical thinking skills.

While some directions are given, students are largely left to themselves to prioritize and analyze a series of problems to be successful.

Use it to help students build skills relevant to the course.

By creating challenges that require students to draw upon knowledge or practice skills relevant to the course content, students can actively apply important concepts and information talked about in class.

Resource Reservation Request Form

Zoom H2n Digital Audio RecorderBlue Snowball USB MicrophoneZoom Q2N Video RecorderCanon VIXIA CameraCanon XA25 CameraMini Video ProjectorDry Erase Lapboard KitVisualsSpeaks KitWacom Drawing TabletEscape Room Kit




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When you pick up the equipment, you will be asked to sign the following Terms of Use Agreement.

I agree that I will:

  • not loan out the equipment to another person; if another person uses my equipment, I agree to accept financial responsibility for any loss, theft, or damage by negligence.
  • inspect all equipment at the time of check out and report any defects or missing pieces I find to the person processing my check out.
  • be liable for any damage or missing pieces of equipment not returned.
  • report any and all damage that may have incurred while in my possession upon return of the equipment.
  • return equipment to the CFT in person, with all included accessories, before closing on the due date.
  • call or come in person to the CFT if I would like to request an equipment renewal. (For most equipment, this would extend the due date by an additional 7 days from the date of the renewal request. All renewal requests are approved based on current equipment availability.)
  • return overdue equipment immediately.
  • clear all equipment memory of pertinent data before returning any equipment to the CFT. (All of the data will be wiped from the equipment upon return. The CFT is not liable for any lost files.)