Day: September 24, 2015

Virtual Office Hours for Student Success with Blackboard Collaborate and Bb IM

What is the value of virtual office hours when you can have face to face “in person” office hours?

To be sure, there is tremendous value in the “in person” opportunities we have to communicate, build relationships, ask questions, work together, and collaborate.  However, what if the time-and-place bound activities just can’t happen or are not very practical because of a variety of challenges including: conflicting class times, traveling to different campus locations, taking extra time for commuting, and of course work schedules or other extra-curricular activities that are also important.

Enter virtual office hours with Blackboard Collaborate and IM.  To save time, best meet the needs of students, and to help manage and coordinate busy schedules to meet and communicate, holding live online office hours can be beneficial and help to contribute to student success. These sessions can also be recorded and shared with students that were unable to attend for the aforementioned reasons.

We invite you to give online office hours a try in one of your classes this semester.  You can use Blackboard Collaborate or IM (Instant Messenger) to quickly and easily connect with your students.

What do students think?  Well, here are a couple of student comments about the value of virtual office hours at Grand Valley State University:

 ”The virtual collaborate office hour appt is forcing me to set aside one hour to completely focus on the course.  Without that hour, I wouldn’t dedicate the time to really review.” – GVSU Student

“I’m looking forward to what other questions people have and are going to ask.  I’m less afraid to ask questions virtually than in the classroom or during a one-on-one office appt.” – GVSU Student

Coming soon to GVSU is a new Collaborate Ultra experience.  The following video provides a few highlights of the new and exciting features coming to campus soon!

To learn more, reach out to our IDeL team or visit our Bb help resources.

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