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Conducting class if you or some of your students are participating remotely

Contact Educational Technology as soon as possible to explore options that will best meet your student(s)’ and your needs. Based on our experience last year – and this year to date – here are some possible scenarios and ways to actively engage those in the room and those outside the room. Educational Technology staff will guide you through the technology options for each scenario, providing training and support – with assistance from Media Services as needed.

Scenario 1 (One or two students participating remotely)

I have one student who needs to be able to listen and actively participate. Is a robot or some other low tech strategy good for the single student?”

In this situation the remote participants could connect to our Ohmni virtual presence robots. The faculty member does not have to change anything about how the class is running. All that is needed is for the Ohmni units to be made available in the classroom so that the remote participants can connect to and control them. The experience is as close to the participant physically being in the classroom as we can achieve. The remote participants will be able to see and hear what is going on in the classroom and the people in the classroom will be able to speak with the remote participants. More than one participant can share an Ohmni when the Ohmni is connected via a Teams meeting.

Scenario 2 (hybrid class where remote participants can follow but not interact)

“I have multiple students either at the same time or they are coming in staggered across the campus so I might as well set up to accommodate multiple students. I want to be able to have most of my classes with my in-person students, but my remote students can follow along.”

We would recommend that you use Teams to include the remote participants. To do so you will use the Meet Now option and invite the specific remote participants. The remote participants will need to be in the Teams client shortly before class, so they are there to accept the invitation. You will then share your screen so the participants can see the slides/videos/documents/web sites you are sharing to the rest of the class on the projector screen. If you have a TA, you can invite them to the meeting and ask that they monitor chat in case the remote participants have questions. If you do not have a TA, then you may want to pause a few times during the meeting to see if there are questions in the chat. If you want to appoint a member of the class as a chat monitor and invite them to the meeting, then they will need to have their computer microphone muted and their computer speakers off (not just the volume set to 0) to avoid feedback in the classroom.

This scenario is most suitable for fully or partially upgraded classrooms. However, you can do this in other classrooms by requesting a portable classroom kit (camera, tripod, and microphone).

Depending on the size of the class and space, using an Owl meeting device (360-degree camera, mic, and speaker combined into one easy-to-use device) with a Teams meeting may be an option.

Educational Technology can assist in guiding you through the process and support resources developed for remote teaching.

Portable camera kits are available through Technology Services.

Scenario 3 (remote class because the campus has moved to remote teaching due to high numbers of positive cases or because a faculty member has an occasional individual circumstance)

In this scenario you will be doing pretty much exactly what you were doing when we were fully remote. You will be in your home or office, and everyone will attend class in a Teams meeting. You can create a Teams meeting in the General channel of the class team associated with your Moodle course or you can create a Teams meeting on your Outlook calendar and add the class as a required attendee. You will start the meeting and use your computer’s camera for the camera and ideally a headset for the microphone and speakers. You can then share your screen so everyone can see the slides/videos/documents/web sites you are sharing. Pause to check chat for questions or encourage participants to use the raise hand feature to indicate they have questions.

Educational Technology can assist in guiding you through the process and support resources developed for remote teaching.

Scenarios based on pedagogical considerations

“I have multiple students and my class is interactive. It’s not enough for them to hear us. They need to be able to speak and participate so we can hear them”

Depending on your teaching preference, options include

  • Ohmni robot (if 1-2 students)
  • Relocate to fully equipped room (with cameras and sound)
  • Everyone – in class and remote – on Teams meeting with cameras on and mics muted unless speaking and speakers off for participants in the classroom

“I have multiple students needing to follow along. Because I do a lot of demos, I move across the room a lot and/or student report outs across the room need to be captured. They need to see and hear me and other students at multiple points in the room.”

Depending on your teaching preference, options include

  • GoPro and wireless mic on instructor
  • In fully equipped room (with mics and sound), “show runner” assistant to switch camera views or follow along with portable camera
  • Depending on room size (e.g., Morgan 222, Kauke 141, or smaller) – Owl meeting device

Educational Technology can assist in guiding you through the process of determining which scenario best matches your needs.

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