The wonder of webinars
By Clive Young, on 15 February 2011
Last week the LTSS team ran our first webinar as part of the ViTAL project, using the Adobe Connect sysyem. ViTAL is an academic community funded by ALT and HEA to address the growing interest in using digital video and media in tertiary education in the UK and beyond. It is led by UCL, Imperial College and Lancaster University. We are keen to establish an active community but in the current financial climate it is difficult to find funding for live seminars and workshops. ViTAL is therefore supported using the Ning social networking software and now, for the first time, webinars hosted by Lancaster University.
During the one-hour session LTSS experts Rod Digges and Jason Norton intitially gave a short Powerpoint presentation on how UCL has rolled out the Echo 360 lecture capture system. Clive Young acted as the moderator, supported by Imperial College and Lancaster University colleagues. The audience, some 30 individuals from all over the UK, asked questions using a chat window and also in the Q&A section by audio. Everything worked very well technically, the sound was clear and the chat window acted as an interesting ‘back channel’ to pick up the concerns of the audience. We also had ‘snap polls’ throughout the session and the response was very positive.
The whole session was also recorded and can be found here. We felt this method would work very well for short seminars, presentations, distance learning and ad hoc training. It was easy to set up, very interactive and great fun to do!