What’s the difference between Visualisers and Interactive Whiteboards?

Somebody asked for advice on the Irish Principals’ Forum about getting a visualiser for their classrooms when they already had IWBs. They were wondering was there any point in investing in the visualiser at all. I thought it might be helpful to point out the differences between the two.

A Visualiser does a different job to an Interactive Whiteboard. Both are teaching tools, in that they are generally more used by the teacher than the children. However, children can and should use them.

To summarise:

A visualiser is basically a digital camera on a stand. When you plug it into a projector, whatever is in the visualiser’s view, appears on the big screen. The teacher or child can then move the objects they need.

An Interactive Whiteboard when attached to a projector shows whatever is displayed on the computer screen. The teacher or child then can interact with what is on the screen using a finger or magic pen.

So, they both do different jobs and teachers seem to be very excited by both. Luckily (excluding the cost of the projector) a visualiser can cost as little as €80 whereas the cheapest commercial IWB starts around the €400 mark.

Last Update: Aug 17, 2017  

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