How Wimba Classroom is Different from In-Person Presentations
Presenting in Wimba events is very different from presenting in-person. In a web conferencing presentation:
- It is easy for participants to "tune out" or become distracted by something else.
- You don't have the benefit of visual cues from participants, such as nodding heads, blank faces, or confused looks.
- Participants may feel isolated.
- Participants may be unsure of how to conduct themselves in the web conferencing environment.
- Participants may be nervous about using a new technology.
Tips for Leading Effective Events
To overcome these differences, consider implementing the following tips:
- Conduct your event from a quiet location where you will not be disturbed. Turn off your phone (unless you are using it for audio) and close applications on your computer that you will not be using during the event. This minimizes distractions. Recommend to your participants that they do the same.
- At the beginning of the event, explain how it will work. Consider using a slide to help you explain.
- Give tips on how to participate in the event.
- Ask all participants to introduce themselves at the beginning of the event.
- Ask for a brief response from participants every 5 minutes. For example, ask them to respond to a poll about whether or not they are ready to move on or ask them to indicate thumbs up (agree) or thumbs down (disagree) if they have any questions. This helps fill in for the missing visual cues and keeps the participants' attention.
- If your event goes longer than an hour, plan breaks every hour.
- Request interaction by asking open-ended questions that require the participants to verbally respond. They should raise their hands or add themselves to the speaking cue if they have something to contribute. If no one volunteers, call on someone.
- Speak slowly and clearly.
- If you ask the participants to use the eboard tools or to take control of an application, explain exactly what you want them to do. They may need instruction on how to accomplish their tasks.
Before conducing your first web conferencing event, consider scheduling a "dry run" with stand-in participants so you can become familiar with the Wimba interface and get feedback on your presentation style. Feel free to contact the ATC to request a staff member who has been trained in the use of Wimba to attend your dry run. Contact the ATC at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last modified: Apr 28, 2009, 07:50 EDT