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Western University of Health Sciences Plans for Hybrid Fall with Mediasite

California and Oregon health professions students watch Mediasite lecture videos over 1 million times to date

MADISON, Wis. — August 18, 2020 — Western University of Health Services is nearing 1 million Mediasite views from its students, due to a massive online learning bump during the spring campus shutdown. A significant portion of those views came from students since March alone.

The health professions university, which has campuses in Pomona, Calif. and Lebanon, Ore., pivoted swiftly to virtual learning with a mix of video lectures and collaborative Zoom and Microsoft Teams calls, all available in its learning management systems Blackboard, Canvas and Elentra. As the new school year quickly approaches, the university is planning for all possible scenarios with Mediasite at the heart of its teaching and learning strategy.

“We are planning for a hybrid approach,” said Amber Schaefer, Educational Technology Administrator, Western University of Health Sciences. “Some of our courses can be conducted completely remotely, however much of our medical curriculum is hands-on. We are working on expanding synchronous teaching to multiple classrooms to allow for greater social distancing, combined with supplemental on-demand lectures.”

A Mediasite user since 2017, the university’s vast library of lesson videos already available to faculty – 65,000 – contributed to their quick move to virtual learning. Instructors created or repurposed 14,200 of those in that short time period.

Prior to the spring campus closure, Mediasite captured many in-person lessons in classrooms. Instructors recorded supplemental content for flipped instruction and they uploaded videos created from other tools into Mediasite, ensuring all content is available in one robust, searchable online portal. In addition, Mediasite captured demos, simulations, grand rounds and student work from labs, complete with multiple video feeds to show complex topics.

“I hear from students all the time that they review Mediasite recordings immediately after class if they want to review what their instructor said. Students will contact faculty right away if they don’t have the recordings. These videos are an essential study tool for our aspiring medical professionals,” Schaefer said.

Schaefer continued: “It’s been amazing how everyone has pulled together to ensure our students are successful during this new reality. We were lucky enough to already have Mediasite and other collaborative tools up and running when the pandemic first hit, and that made all the difference.”

“While it is difficult to predict what the next school year holds for campuses, having a strong mix of technology in place ensures that students and instructors will be able to pivot and react to any scenario,” said Elizabeth Collins, SVP of North America Sales, Sonic Foundry, maker of Mediasite. “Western University of Health Sciences is a fantastic example of a highly successful online learning initiative. Instructors are effectively delivering engaging video lessons to students, who are in turn using them as important study tools after class. Everyone learns differently, and in this new blended environment, it will be more important than ever that students can go back and review lessons – rewinding, fast-forwarding and pausing to take notes. We are proud to continue to be the trusted solution for the university during this uncertain time.”

Mediasite is a highly-automated and integrated video platform that facilitates hybrid learning in this new digital-first world. Trusted by 1,700 schools in 65 countries, Mediasite quickly and cost-effectively scales the capture, management, delivery and search of live and on-demand streaming videos. Mediasite’s solutions create the most engaging, data-rich and personalized learning experiences possible as students and instructors collaborate from a distance.

About Western University of Health Sciences
Western University of Health Sciences (, located in Pomona, Calif. and Lebanon, Ore., is an independent nonprofit health professions university, conferring degrees in biomedical sciences, dental medicine, health sciences, medical sciences, nursing, optometry, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, podiatric medicine and veterinary medicine. WesternU is home to WesternU Health, where the best in collaborative health care services is offered.

About Sonic Foundry®, Inc.

Founded in 1991 and headquartered in Madison, Wis., Sonic Foundry (OTC: SOFO) is dedicated to transforming how the world works and learns through innovative and scalable technology solutions. Sonic Foundry’s brands include Vidable® and Global Learning Exchange® which help unlock a smarter, more connected world for learners, workers, and entrepreneurs everywhere. For more information visit


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Media Relations Jaimee Pitt Community & Events Manager 608.216.7592
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