Webinar. You’ve probably heard the term, but do you truly know what a webinar is? Do you know how webinars can benefit instructors and students?
A webinar is a meeting that takes place online where participants from various locations come together and interact as if they were face-to-face. Students are able connect with each other or meet with faculty during office hours or for content instruction. Webinar tools provide communication through audio and video, as well as through screen-sharing.
Webinars include a host (the faculty member) who organizes the online meeting and invites attendees. Attendees can include only one or two students or can include fifty or more students. Attendees can be located all over a college campus, in various cities and towns across the state or in various parts of the world. Webinar participants can join the meeting from any location with Internet access.
Webinar Tools All webinar programs are slightly different, however, they all have the same basic tools to help you meet your meeting goals and objectives. These include:
- audio and video communication
- screen sharing
- virtual whiteboard
- text chat
- session recording
A webinar is an excellent way to engage with students and support interactive learning. However, as with any technology, webinar use has both benefits and limitations in the teaching and learning process.
Benefits of Webinar Use
- introduce new content
- review content
- assessment feedback
- 1:1 or small group support
- Q&A sessions
- live presentations (by faculty and students)
- guest speakers
- office hours
- session recording for later viewing
Limitations of Webinar Use
- setting a common meeting time
- technical issues (by faculty and students)
- Internet connection/speed
- required equipment (headset/speakers)
- technical support
- preparation time (for faculty)
- learning curve (both faculty and students)
Webinar Programs Longwood University offers our community two webinar solutions: Canvas Conferences and WebEx. Contact the DEC to learn more about these tools and get started with your online meeting today!