Many of our Longwood students live in rural areas, or areas where cell and internet service is not optimal. Asking students to be on a Zoom or similar style tool webinar/conference call (live streaming) requires a lot more bandwidth and stable connectivity than some students have.
Is this really a problem?
Yes, ITS and the DEC have worked with several students to verify their connectivity issues. Here are some of the valid reasons a student may be facing challenges:
- Other family members (sometimes the household wage earners) are also required to be online for remote work
- A hot spot or device with cellular connection (cell phone, iPad, tablet) is only as good as the carrier connection it is tied to
- Some students have no option other than satellite for internet. Satellite is not good for streaming and experiences connectivity issues for many reasons, including cloudy/windy days
If synchronous (at the same time) streaming video and/or web conferencing like Zoom or Webex are a required part of your course, please also make sure that
- You are recording and posting the recording so students can access it at a later time
- You upload lecture notes
- You adjust your method of counting participation points to allow for students who may not be able to attend synchronously
If you would like help with specific students in your courses, please email your college associate dean with the student’s name and your course(s). ITS and the DEC will work with the student to determine the extent of the issues and provide you with accurate information (and support in course design, if needed) to help you ensure the student is successful.
Recommendations that are given to students:
- Reach out to your faculty to communicate you situation
- Ask if recordings are an option as they require less bandwidth than live streaming
- Turn off your video (video of you to be sent), join the session with audio only
- Mute your audio when not speaking to lessen the bandwidth you are using
- If you are able to go to a public library, they normally have available wifi
- If you are near to campus, the Greenwood Library is available