How Video Analytics Enhance the Student Experience and Improve Campus Safety

Colleges and universities are taking a data-driven approach to campus safety and enhancing the student and faculty experience. 

  • January 5, 2023 | Author: Patricia Schnaidt
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Education institutions have long used video cameras as part of campus safety operations, but with advances in AI and computer vision, video becomes an even richer source of insights that can be used to protect people and property on campus and keep the community informed during incidents. Real-time video analytics are increasingly instrumental to improve people’s experiences on campus. 

Improve Campus Safety

Advances in video analytics can help universities prevent crime, provide campus safety with greater situational awareness and keep the community informed during an incident. Advances in video analytics software, surveillance cameras, live mapping and indoor positioning systems, and sensor data allow campuses to identify specific behavior patterns or suspicious activities. 

Understanding how people move through campus can improve safety. People loitering in a campus parking lot after hours may suggest criminal activity. With the data to identify traffic patterns that indicate dangerous roads, the university can gain insight into where accidents are more likely to occur and take steps to minimize legal and financial risk. Identifying dark areas of campus or unlit crosswalks can provide insight for increased lighting – and with the addition of smart lighting, it can add to sustainability efforts. 

Enhance the Campus Experience

Video analytics can be used to improve the campus experience for students, faculty and staff. 

Understanding where people are and how they move across campus in real time can be used to manage crowds at large events like football games or concerts. If the entrance to the stadium is blocked – a potential safety issue – the university can dispatch offices to disperse the crowd and provide a better, safer experience for everyone. 

Video analytics can help schools optimize the use of facilities like classrooms, lecture halls and shops by measuring traffic patterns and building occupancy. Understanding the patterns of how people move within buildings and around campus and where students hang out or study can give the university insight that can help them better support student engagement and optimize the use of facilities. Drivers can be alerted to available spaces in parking garages – or be redirected when lots are full.



Curtain University Makes a Smart Campus a Reality with Video Analytics

Curtain University created a smart campus in Perth, Western Australia to provide a better student experience, increase campus efficiency and safety, and enable data-driven research. With the help of Hitachi Vantara’s solutions, Curtain University collects and analyzes data based on the movement of students and staff as well as the physical environment, including heating, air conditioning and lighting. 

Curtain University uses the Hitachi Vantara Smart Spaces solution to make better use of more than 300,000 square meters of facilities. The university uses the data generated from cameras and other sources to generate contextual information about the life of students and their activities, the day-to-day realities for faculty and staff, and activity patterns in lecture halls, libraries, offices, parking garages and shops. It can then make more informed decisions about its classes, operations and future requirements. Cameras, along with facial recognition and face-matching technologies, allows individuals to be located in specific rooms, which has helped reduce testing fraud and cheating.

How Hitachi Vantara Can Help

Universities and colleges can leverage Hitachi’s smart spaces and video intelligence solutions to enhance campus safety, optimize the use of campus space, and improve the experience for students and faculty. 

With Hitachi Vantara’s Smart Spaces and Lumada Video Insights solution, universities can increase campus security with less resources, creating an integrated command center for proactive insights and quick response.

The Hitachi Vantara solution integrates video, IoT data and other event sources to create a holistic view of cameras, call boxes, and other assets for greater insight into areas that are susceptible to after-hours vandalism or when packages are left in public areas. By analyzing campus social media posts, universities create a picture of threats and student sentiment in real time. With improved situational awareness, safety offices can quickly locate a person of on campus. Analysis of historical data can predict future traffic congestion, maintenance issue and areas of potential crime. 

Protecting Privacy

Personal data protection is also a fundamental right, and as the use of video and analytics grows across college campuses, cities and other places, privacy protection is even more important. Privacy controls are built into Hitachi Vantara solutions to prevent wrongful access at all levels. People’s bodies are pixelated so personally identifiable information is not visibility, and use of raw footage for investigations requires verification and is tracked to ensure compliance. 

Learn more about the Hitachi Vantara Visualization Suite.


Image credit: Hitachi Vantara

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