Othman Yeop Abdullah Graduate School of Business

WebEx Tips for Instructors

Tips for instructor use of WebEx.

Table of Contents

  • What type of meeting should you use?
  • Before the course
  • For the first session, prepare early
  • Before the session/meeting:
  • At the beginning of each session
  • During the session
  • Managing Distractions
  • Credits

What type of meeting should you use?

For consulation, use Personal Room

For course sessions, use Schedule a Meeting

Personal Rooms

  • URL (web address) which does not change and is specific to you
  • Allows you to ‘open the door’ for a specific student and ‘kick out’ a student
  • Allows you to ‘leave the door open’ so multiple students can come and go
  • If you use the Personal Room for regular course sessions it could be difficult to ensure that only current students are in attendance.

Scheduled Meeting sessions:

  • New meeting information is generated for each session
  • Ability to be password protected sessions
  • Attendees must have the correct meeting number or meeting url to join the meeting

Before the course

  • Before the first session, make sure that you have reviewed all the steps for how people need to connect their computer audio. If at any time, they are having issues connecting to the computer audio, then they should dial in.
  • Send a guide to your students ahead of time:
    o Tell them about hardware/software requirements.
    o Ask them to access WebEx before the first session to download the WebEx plug-in (they only need to do this once)

For the first session, prepare early

  • As this could be the first WebEx session for both you are your students, you may want to schedule your session to start 30 mins early. This will allow you to setup the sharing, webcam and audio.
  • This also allows the students to join in earlier. They can only join in once you have started the WebEx session.
  • Test the audio with a few early students and be assured you are all set.

Before the session/meeting:

  • Choose a quiet place to conduct the session. Make sure you advise your participants to do this too!
  • Check your equipment and test in advance -
    o Computer or notebook connected to a (preferably) wired internet connection
    o Headsets (microphone and headphones)
    o Webcam (optional)
  • Reduce your screen resolution before starting - Ideally, you should reduce your screen resolution to 1024 x 768 pixels maximum, particularly if you are sharing your screen. If a participant has a smaller screen resolution than your desktop, the participant will have to scroll around to view your screen.
  • Test audio levels - If you have time before your session, please make sure that your participants can hear you and vice-versa. Get them all to check the green tick as indication to you that they can hear you loud and clear. However, do not spend too much time doing this

At the beginning of each session

  • Start the WebEx session 10-15 minutes before class starts.
  • Advise everyone to come in early, preferably 10 mins before start time. Ask them to make use of this time to test their microphones, headsets and webcams.
  • Enable chat between participants – set it under Assign Privileges. This is useful if they encounter technical problems and cannot get your attention.
  • Monitor the chat - If you have an assistant, your assistant can do this. If you have no assistant, ask a student to monitor it and notify you of issues.
  • Request that participants mute their microphones when you start.
  • Set clear expectations - Set how you would like to take student questions, can they interrupt or there are Q&A segments midway or end of session, should they ask via chat…
  • Check if everyone else can hear and see you. 
  • Create a welcoming atmosphere - When an attendee joins a session, if they hear and see nothing, they will get panicky. You will need to setup a warm welcoming mood.
  • Background music may be useful or simply a 1st page of the slide with a picture or note like "Welcome" or "you have successfully joined" or "the session will start at 9:05AM" for example can help to alleviate their fears

During the session

  • Should you or your students experience severe audio lag or quality issues; you may switch to calling in or text chat; depending on your teaching requirements.
  • Ask "yes/no" questions to help you to gauge how the class is doing. Use it at various points to know the students are following you.
  • Annotate and point - Use the annotation tools like pencil, pointer tool or laser pointer to direct your students’ attention.
  • Collaborate - Not every question needs to be answered by the speaker or lecturer only. Just like in a real class, you might have certain highly capable students wanting to jump in and contribute. Simply check if anyone would like to respond to a fellow student question.
  • Arrange for a co-host/presenter – perhaps ask a student to do this - A co-host or presenter can handle participants’ text chat queries and simple technical issues that they may face. You will be engrossed in conducting the session, so you may not notice requests for assistance. Your co-host/presenter should attend training before the session so that he/she is familiar with WebEx and is able to assist others. This could be assigned on a rotating basis.

Managing Distractions

  • Greet a late arrival when appropriate, but keep the meeting going
  • Have a chat message explaining that participants will have access meeting notes, chat, or the meeting recording later if they need to review what they missed.
  • Ask participants to mute their audio.
  • Ask that sidebar conversations be taken offline. You can do this through both audio and private chat

Credits
Much of the above is based on the following:

University of Cincinnati. (2019, October 20). WebEx Tips for Instructors. IT@UC Knowledge Base. Rerieved October 20, 2016 from https://kb.uc.edu/KBArticles/WebEx-InstructorTips.aspx

 

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