Many people are now well up and running with using Collaborate for online teaching so here are a few additional tips and ideas for moving forward with your online teaching:
Before your session
You can schedule a session in Collaborate and send the link out in advance to your participants – remember you can’t enter the session or upload files until the start time so allow early entry in the settings to give yourself time to prepare.
Send students the guest link to the session – this will effectively give them a short-cut to the session and make it easier to access. Tutors should access the session via the Blackboard module to ensure you have moderator permissions.
You can also send the guest link to external people such as guest lecturers – once the session has started you can then “promote” them to enable them to present.
Send a reminder an hour or so before the session is due to start with the guest link embedded again.
During the session
Remember to use the record function so your session is available for those who couldn’t attend.
If you find the connection is poor turn off your webcam to save bandwidth. It’s also a good idea to ask students to turn off their cameras and microphones while you’re presenting to save bandwidth and prevent background noise. If students are having trouble hearing you they can dial in using a phone.
If for any reason your session drops out – don’t panic! Make sure you close your browser down completely, then go back into the session again – if you don’t close the browser you may still be logged on in another window.
Breakout rooms are great for group work – here’s the Blackboard help on using breakout groups:
Unfortunately the TEL Unit don’t have capacity to investigate individual student issues however our ‘Getting Started’ video can be found here:
General help for students is provided by Blackboard here:
After the session
Recordings won’t be available immediately after the session as they can take a while to process, however you can access your recordings from the burger menu on the top left hand side of the virtual classroom page.
You can also access a register to see who attended the session and how long they were signed in for. From your sessions page change the filter to all previous sessions:
Click on the button at the end of the session you want to access and choose “View reports”
For more general guidance on remote working IT have produced this useful guide: