Web conferencing is a way to extend the boundaries of physical classrooms, meetings, or events without leaving the office - or losing control. Humboldt State University uses Blackboard Collaborate as its web conferencing service to provide a comprehensive collaboration and communication environment for students, staff, and instructors.
Before diving into your first Blackboard Collaborate session - as an instructor or as a participant - you should review the appropriate Getting Started and Training materials to ensure you get the maximum benefit from the software.
Blackboard Collaborate web conferencing lets you:
- Talk in real time over the web using Voice over IP (VoIP)
- Share applications and desktops
- Draw and write on a “virtual whiteboard”, and use annotation tools
- Poll participants for feedback -pre-planned or on-the-fly
- Walk through slides and visit web sites together
- Use emoticons to “virtually” raise hands, clap, or express mood
- Chat online using via text messages
- Move into virtual breakout rooms for smaller group work
- Optionally integrate webcam video into sessions to allow one- or two-way video communication
- Easily configure the features to best support your teaching or presentation style
- Record and archive events for playback at a later date
Use Blackboard Collaborate web conferencing to:
- Engage guest speakers remotely
- Facilitate research and other non-academic collaborations
- Hold virtual section meetings
- Conduct virtual office sessions
- Deliver distance education classes
- Support collaborative work between students
- Provide virtual research and writing services consultations
- Chat online with prospective students, current students, current staff, alumni
- Set up webinars and other online instructional events
Benefits of Using Blackboard Collaborate Web Conferencing
- Integrates directly with Moodle to add real-time communication and collaboration to the learning environment
- Increases retention and completion rates by creating a sense of community through real-time student-teacher and student-student interaction, even in distance learning situations.
- Eliminates geographical barriers by extending the boundaries of the physical facility to leverage limited resources, provide guest speakers and remote experts, and expand geographical reach to increase enrollment
- Build online communities to support student-teacher collaboration, encourage participation, and stimulate innovation, regardless of distance. Add-hoc virtual meetings can be set up, with or without an instructor.
- Save travel costs by reducing the need for travel by students, instructors, guest speakers, and staff from other institutions.
- Increase staff productivity by holding live virtual meetings across multiple campuses with no weather or other unavoidable disruptions
- Accommodate multiple learning styles with two way voice, chat, and a shared interactive whiteboard to create a rich and engaging learning environment that enables all students to benefit fully from sessions
- Integrate technology in the classroom to meet the needs of students who have grown up in a digital world and help instructors to adapt their teaching styles to keep students engaged and actively learning.
- Scale information and knowledge by creating reusable learning sessions, assisting class preparation, and exam review; build knowledgebases by pre-recording training on commonly-used applications or library resources
- Leverage limited teaching resources by minimizing travel time, combining students from mutliple campuses for online classes, and engaging subject matter experts to address classes from anywhere in the world
- Provide professional development by enabling live mentoring and the delivery of intuitive professional development courses